End of the novel

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End of the novel

Post  Eric Gaidin on Thu Jun 25, 2009 10:22 pm

The end of this book is filled with such promise, both from a story standpoint and from a writing standpoint. Jordan has left himself open to a zillion possibilities. As a writer, I wonder how he decided to take the specific path that he took for book two. This is one of the most difficult aspects of writing that I've come to recognize--once you write something, and you believe it to be really good, where do you take it from there? There's a certain fear involved, a fear of potentially ruining what you've already grown to love. However, I really don't think that Jordan could have given in to that fear, if he experienced it: the end of this novel demands more to be written. The story almost seems to tell itself. I'm curious if Jordan ever gave any interviews were he spoke about this aspect of writing. Was he ever worried about messing it up? Was he ever concerned whether or not he was telling the right story? The best story that he could tell? It would be interesting to look at first drafts of that final chapter of Eye of the World--was Rand maybe recognized by the warriors at Tarwin's Gap? Just think of the ramifications if Rand was identified on the battlefield. I think overall Jordan handles such a large story--the scope is positively daunting--as a skilled horse-team skinner. The skinner is not truly reponsible for making the horses pull the cart, the horses do that on their own, but the skinner is responsible for tight turns and subtle direction changes. Jordan's story feels as if it takes off on its own. He just guides it here, subtley maneuvers it there, and the end result is legendary.

One other important note here is how fast Rand takes to the sword. Lan watches him train inside Fal Dara in the last chapter, and makes a comment that he must slow down because he cannot become a blademaster in a couple of weeks. It made me pause and ask, why would Lan want Rand to relax a bit? Lan knows what Rand is, and I would think then that Lan would expect Ran to increase his training ten-fold. Rand's responsibilties, plus his need for self control, are mounting considerably since his battle with Aginor and Ishamael. Therefore he needs to increase his training. Lan walks away from Rand here, however, I think he should have pushed him harder. Rand's tougher than most of them realize, I think, yet the fact that he battled two of the Forsaken and won is proof enough of his mettle.
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Re: End of the novel

Post  Uncle Mart on Mon Jun 29, 2009 12:26 am

As the novels progress we start to see Lan as a very wise man, not just a remarkable swordsman. Maybe Jordan was hinting at that here. Think about it Eric. It's much easier to train your body than your mind. Perhaps Lan was saying that to be a blademaster you need to know when and why to use your sword, not just how. Maybe Lan was telling Rand to slow down so that his mind had time to absorb everything.

Just food for thought.

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Re: End of the novel

Post  Eric Gaidin on Mon Jun 29, 2009 9:21 am

Having trained in martial arts for 15+ years I completely understand what you're saying. However, Lan knows what Rand is. He knows what Rand must face and also knows of the brief timetable on which Rand must learn an extraordinary amount. Lan's not perfect (just look how he ticks off Nynaeve most times during their initial secretive courtship) and so I honestly think that Lan could have done more as a teacher here. It's a missed opportunity. I identify missed teaching opportunities nearly daily in my line of work too. Sometimes they're unavoidable, but still important to recognize.
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Re: End of the novel

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