Patrick Rothfuss Reread

Rothfuss Reread: Making a Mask for Patrick Rothfuss, Part 2

My obsessively detailed reread of Patrick Rothfuss’s Kingkiller Chronicles is over, but we want to keep on talking about the books. I’m going to post the occasional continuation post when the last one gets too long or if there’s something to say.

Spoilers for all of The Wise Man’s Fear and The Name of the Wind—these discussions assume you’ve read all of both books, and frankly they won’t make the slightest bit of sense if you haven’t. But we welcome new people who have read the books and want to geek out about them. This post is full of spoilers, please don’t venture beyond the cut unless you want them.

Abbreviations: NW = The Name of the Wind. WMF = The Wise Man’s Fear. D3 = Day Three, the forthcoming final volume. K = Kvothe or Kote when I can’t figure out what to call him and I’m feeling Kafkaesque. MT: Myr Tariniel. D = Denna, 4C = Four Corners, CTH—that thing I can’t spell! IID3Y = Is it Day Three Yet?

Useful links: The Sleeping Under the Wagon post. The reread index. The map. The timeline. Imaginary Linguistics.


So, Pat was GoH at Vericon, and Ada Palmer made him a wonderful Cthaeh mask, and he confirmed for me that it is pronounced cuh-tay. This mask was RobbYuan’s idea—well done Robb! Note the butterflies. I think it’s great. And Pat seemed really pleased with it.

He wasn’t going near any spoilers, as we’ve come to expect. He did confirm that he is revising D3 and it may be a while, and that he has a Bast and an Auri novella forthcoming, as well as the Laniel one. He talked about his writing process, how he takes a long time getting from first draft to what we see, complicating and recomplicating, weaving everything together and getting to the kind of levels of density we all love and appreciate. I mentioned how I had a line in one of my books “Time is rent from the worlds” and how impossible it would be to translate—though it has been translated—and I said pretty much everything in his books is like that, and he agreed, and talked about his translator forum and the kind of help he gives translators.

On a really panel about music and poetry in text, he said that he couldn’t play any instruments and everything about music in the books is made up. He writes poetry—well, we know that!—and he has had other people set things to music, but he hasn’t had all that much experience even with that. He just creates the illusion of music through the text. My considered reaction to that was “Wow.” And yes, he certainly does. I’d have sworn he had played a lyre with a broken string. But apparently not.

Jo Walton is a science fiction and fantasy writer. She’s published three poetry collections and nine novels, including the Hugo and Nebula winning Among Others. She has just published a collection of her posts, What Makes This Book So Great. She has a new novel My Real Children coming out in May. She reads a lot, and blogs about it here irregularly. She comes from Wales but lives in Montreal where the food and books are more varied.


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