SF & Fantasy

Ask Terry Brooks: September Post


For many years the only chance a fan had of speaking to Terry was to meet him at tour events or conventions. Now with the establishment of this website, Terry will accept two questions from each fan per month. On the last day of the month, five questions will be randomly drawn. Terry will answer these five questions and they will be posted monthly for your enjoyment.

Below are the questions selected last month and Terry’s answers! Enjoy!

Note: This section may contain spoilers!

Greetings All,

Been out of the road with the new book, Wards of Faerie and had a chance to meet many of you. I will be out again starting Monday to Anderson’s in Naperville, outside Chicago; then on to Boswell Books in Milwaukee on Tuesday; B & N West in Madison on Wednesday; and B&N on North Snelling in Minneapolis on Thursday. Hope to see a few more of you then.

Judine continues to take pictures and blog about the events, so look for that on the website. Many of you have sent in pictures you have taken, and we try to run as many of those as we can. It really is good have a chance to see everyone. Makes the touring effort worth all the work.

Still, time and tide waits for no man. Nor does Ask Terry. So for those few minutes I have before setting out again::

Houdini Derek writes: In the final Landover book, will we learn of the fairies interest in Ben Holiday and family? It seems that has never really been spelled out.

Terry Brooks replies: All the way back to Magic Kingdom for Sale, we have known that the fairy world and its denizens have a special connection to the Kings of Landover. Some of it has to do with the office they hold, some with their possession of the medallion which allows them to move back and forth between worlds. I have not written about it in depth, and that is an area I might want to do something more with in the future.

Anonymous writes: Mr. Brooks, did you already have the story for The Wishong of Shannara in mind as you were writing The Elfstones of Shannara? Wil Ohmsford experienced the change but did not know how it would affect him? Did you know it would lead to the wishsong?

Terry Brooks replies: I did not have the story for Wishsong in mind until after Elfstones was done and I began thinking about where to take the story. Subconsciously, I imagine I was planning to do something with the effects on Wil Ohmsford of using the Elfstones when he had no business doing so. Elfstones are an Elven magic, and a half-blood is not supposed to use them ever. By then, I was also trying to do something with my ongoing premise that use of magic always exacts a price from the user. If you are not a qualified user, then the price would be more severe. Thus, the wishsong and its consequences.

Wesley Bell writes: I was wondering why we haven’t seen the wishsong in the Elessedil line after Wren Elessedil? Granted she did not have use of the wishsong but had been an Omsford with that genetic predisposition?

Terry Brooks replies: No explanation for this has been offered. Except that we know the magic is fickle and tends to skip certain generations and certain members of different generations. So far, it has bypassed the Elessedils. But you never know.

Seth H. writes: You said in your recent interview with Lev Grossman that you nearly always know your ending for a single book, or a series of books, near the start of your process. Is this true for the brain-exploding novel of drop-dead, epic awesomeness that you’ll hopefully write before you die that ends your adventures in the Four Lands? Do you have an idea of how you’re going to end a saga of 20-30 mind-absorbing books?

Terry Brooks replies: Yes. But no details are available. Only that it will center on a resolution of the ongoing conflict between science and magic.

Jonathan S. Hare writes: Love your work Terry. My question is about the Ellcrys. Amberle was only the second Ellcrys. With how long the first lived, why is she failing already? The first survived the time of Faerie, the rise of man, the destruction of the old world, and well into the time of the 4 Lands. Amberle seems to have lasted just a little over 1,000 years, give or take a century.

Terry Brooks replies: This is a good point. In my mind, the longevity of the trees was not uniform, and each was subject to the vicissitudes of its time. This is another area I have not addressed specifically, except to say that you never know about the Ellcrys. It lives as long as it lives, and that timeline is not predictable.

Okay, gang, back on the road! Hope to see many of you!

Back next month,

To ask your own questions of Terry Brooks, visit his website at www.terrybrooks.net!


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