In the fourth part of our five-part Reddit AMA recap, Christopher discusses the power of true names, Eragon’s gold flower appearing in the future, Angela’s backstory in Book 5, progress editing his sci-fi novel, and much more!
Last month, Christopher took to the popular internet community Reddit to host an AMA, or “Ask Me Anything,” allowing readers of the r/Fantasy sub-Reddit to submit questions for the author to answer!
We released what we then believed to be a three-part series recapping the incredible amount of questions and answers from the event… but Christopher surprised us by returning two weeks later to answer an additional eighty questions! We’ve compiled two more posts, bringing the series total to five, to be be released today and tomorrow.
Here’s a summary of what you may have missed in the first three recaps:
- Part one: new details on the original ending of Inheritance, Book V hints, a surprise appearance from author Brandon Sanderson, and much more!
- Part two: unpublished ending of Inheritance, the gender of his upcoming scifi novel’s main character, his favorite video games, heaps of writing advice, and more!
- Part three: a future Alagaësia story following Angela, deleted Eragon/Arya romance scenes, his ideal involvement in a movie reboot, when he’ll tackle Book V, and more!
And now, on to part four!
u/MaiCastiblanco asked: “1. The “true name” of each person seems to me something more complex on many ways. On the case of Murtagh, his name’s change seems effective until the moment he fully understood how was his change and why. His love love for Nasuada might trigger his understanding, but if it is love which makes that truly “change” happen, I don’t think it was only Nasuada’s love that made him change. He was risking his life since he met Eragon, and maybe he didn’t fully understand it, but still I’m guessing that his love for his friend (later became on his brother) would start his change. Am I right on that?
2. My brother wants to know if the spell that Eragon and Umaroth used to hold the Eldunari for the travel to the battle with Galbatorix (Inheritance) was created by Tenga. In the book said that the spell was created by a wizard but it wasn’t specified.”
u/galunid asked: “Could Eragon possibly learn a sorcery at some point? What is Eragon doing right now?”
u/WitchofRoses asked: “One of the many questions that have bugged me, is not knowing what happened to the golden flower. Did it germinate in the end? I would love to find out as it’s a question that bugged me for years!”
u/RenaisseanceMan13 asked: “Who, and what is Angela? She is such an important character but we never really learn a lot about her origin, her powers, her weaknesses, etc. Also, why didn’t you expand Nasuadas and Murtaughs relationship, in “Eragon” it seemed as though their relationship was going to grow and change, but it didn’t.”
u/derdeedur asked: “I’d like to ask several questions about the new sci-fi novel: What gender and age is the protagonist? Will this be a stand alone book or a series? Will the aliens (if any) be humanoid or completely alien? Will there be any element of magic, and if so how do you plan to draw a clear distinction from both the Inheritance cycle and Star Wars in that respect?”
u/Sarres asked: “Will your next sci fi book be a apart of a series or is it a standalone?”
u/Jangchi asked: “1. Do you think your sci-fi book will be published this year? 2. You have revealed to us, briefly, that Arya/Eragon would be together. This was also foreshadowed when Angela said that he would have a romance with that of noble blood. Anyways, back to the question. How would you do it? I am not asking for the exact way as I know you would say no comment or simply not answer the question. But if it is pondered, Eragon was destined to never return to Alagaesia. That would mean in order for them to be a couple, Arya would abandon the elves. Which like you say many times is not part of her character. And if they were to eventually marry then that would make Eragon the elf king. However that would not work either for he is not even a full elf. I do not wish for the specific answer, because I know you will say No-comment. But this question dwells in my mind and it would be really upsetting for it not to be answered.
u/Ro6279 asked: “1. If Galbatorix had not existed, what would Rhunön have done with regard to making riders’ swords, with the amount of brightsteel very less?
2. Are there any other deleted/removed scenes from the cycle? If yes, could you share them with us?
3. What is the average life span of a dwarf?
4. Who would win in a fight to death between Fäolin and Eragon(without the eldunarí and other sources of energy)?
5. I guess I’m hoping for too much :p, but can you tell us a new fact from book V?”
u/Keralamacha asked: “We all know that Eragon finds Arya beautiful but how does Arya find Eragon before and after his transition?”
u/MaiaCastiblanco asked: “On your last Q&A (April 27) you explained that, without the Eldunaries, Eragon was equally powerful as an elf Rider. However, now he has “the word”: the truly name of the ancient language (Murtagh, Eragon and Arya have it, I believe…). That “word” is not making him more powerful than an elf Rider? 2. Why Eragon had visions about his future? 3. Brom showed something to Sapphire about the massacre in Doru Areaba in order to convince her to wait while he was talking with Eragon (first book when Eragon was about to run away from Carvahall), what was that?”
u/CallMeTheMo asked: “Have you considered creating the Liduen Kvaedhi?”
u/ddljsrk asked: “Let’s just say Faolin came back alive.. Who would Arya choose? Eragon or Faolin?”
u/Mahinama asked: “What did Arya want to say to Eragon before he fought Murtagh?”
u/TheBlackAngelCRO asked: “Is the reason that Eragon can’t return to Alagaesia the same as why are they (cant remember the name of a grup now) writing Domia abr Wyrda?”
u/steuby asked: “1. If you could change just one thing in the whole Inheritance Cycle, what would it be? 2. Would you rather see the series be remade into a movie or TV show (think Game of Thrones)? 3. What’s the best part of being an author? What’s the worst?”
u/shagfried asked: “I just was wondering what your favorite scene was in the books. Mine would have to be when Eragon was forging Brisingr but next to that is Arya becoming a Rider.”
u/Hadippaoye asked: “When Eragon and Arya were sword fighting, why does Eragon feel that Arya was testing him? Was she testing him or was it just his imagination and if she was, why, cause she rejected him so why would she test him and for what? Another question related to Arya: what made her decide to reveal her true name to Eragon? That and her reaction to Eragon’s departure makes her cry which does indicate she likes him right???? Pls say yes… but why did she decide to show by doing something so… radical, life-changing dare I say, when at first, when Eragon offered to tell her his true name, she was horrified by the responsibility? Why does she send so many mixed signals?? Does she like him or not?? How was her relationship with faolin as in was it as strong as her relationship with eragon or stronger? She kinda avoids answering eragon when he asks her if she loved him… Y??”
u/Homindid777777 asked: “1. Was the geography of any real-world place an inspiration for the overall geography of Alagaësia (i.e. not just specific areas)? 2. Sorry if you’ve answered this before, but does the scifi book take place in the same universe as Alagaësia? 3. I know that you created an outline for all the books before writing them. What was your biggest change from the outline to the finished books, aside from splitting the third book in two?”
u/ColossusxCSGO asked: “1. Why is El-Harim so dangerous? 2. Galbatorix’s sword (from vrael) was from the original Eragon, wasn’t it? Your hint of light v dark in the future suggests to me that the sword will get into the hands of another dark character. 3. Tenga is the most powerful character, right? :D”
u/ibid-11962 asked: “1. In the books, Arya mentions humans and elves having a relationship, but it wasn’t said if these relationships resulted in offspring. Would the child be immortal, like an elf? How about other relationships among the four major species (human, urgal, elf, dwarf)?
2. Can you tell us anything new about Tenga, son of Ingvar?
3. How about Angela? (I’m not asking for anything earth-shattering, just senseless trivia.)
4. Why did Eragon leave in a ship? Why not fly? How did he even know that the far east was uninhabited?
5. How big was Shruikan?
6. Was the woman Angela talks about in Eragon as having been able to talk to Solembum Eragon’s mother?
7. Is a rider, who lost their dragon still immortal, or do they just possess extremely long life?”
u/andyroo1256 asked: “Does Eragon ever repay Horst for the meat? Or is that self-resolving when he assists with Hope’s catlip (which by the way was a brilliant way to remind us readers that the riders are not just war machines)? Does Jeod ever get a ride on Saphira? Lastly, you’ve been giving us some mixed messages recently. What with starting your sci fi stuff, hinting at a fifth book, or another book based on Angela. Me asking this is like a human questioning Umaroth, but if you need a break from the Inheritance cycle why not just tell us you will be dedicating yourself to full time sci fi? or have you not decided?”
u/owloy asked: “1. Are there any sub-species/different types of dragons in the world of Eragon?
2. Also about the world – any jungles anywhere? With Jaguars the size of Shrrg??
3. Do you think Murtagh and Thorn will visit Eragon and Saphira in the east at some point?
4. If you were a magician in alagaesia and were able to fully believe in anything you set your mind to believe in, would you be able to lie? Like if you convinced yourself you were a pink elephant, stated so in the ancient language, then in the next moment truly believed you were human, state so too? Sorry if this is a weird question
5. Do you think there are any widely believed misconceptions about the magic/the ancient language in alagaesia? Among experienced magicians, like the elves, as well? And if so, what are those misconceptions?
6. In what major way do Thorn and Murtagh’s personality differ?
7. Will we meet Valdr again in any future book?
8. Will King Orrin cause major trouble for Nasuada in the future?
9. Does Alagaesia stretch very far north?
10. Umaroth warned Murtagh and Thorn about an area where “the ground grows black and brittle and the air smells of brimstone” – does this have anything to do with a wild dragon? Or several wild dragons?”
u/scotzorz56 asked: “Curious though, you been lifting? You’re looking pretty shredded these days.”
u/td260 asked: “Who’s your favorite Doctor?”
u/SirMuffinIII asked: “During the writing of the Inheritance Cycle were there any times where you couldn’t think of anything else to write? If so how did you come up with it? Also, who are your favourite authors?”
u/PowerMetalPaladin asked: “Do you hold any personal spiritual/religious/philosophical beliefs that are alluded to in your books?”
u/dfedy asked: “What motivated you to write these books? What was your inspiration? Lastly are you planning on releasing a new book soon?”
u/JustHere4AskTh1ngs asked: “When I read your books I found a few things that seemed familiar to me. Have you been to Barcelona? Is Dras-Leona inspired by Barcelona? Helgrind by Montserrat? When visiting Barcelona, did you visit a Caffè located next to Gracia? I think that I remember you, but maybe I’m just wrong.”
u/ChickenCurry_ asked: “Say you had to tell a story but instead of a novel, you get to direct a video game with a AAA game studio at your command. Do you feel like you’d be able to overcome limitations in such a scenario, given that writing has limitations such as how every reader has a different visual library /imagination (and other things)?”
u/redheasidence asked: “Was wondering what you were reading when you were fifteen that you loved the way I loved your books?”
u/mylhu1011 asked: “I’ve been engrossed in fantasy novels since I was in elementary school, and your series was not a disappointment in most ways. However, I did notice a lot of parallels between the plot lines, characters, and character developments of the Inheritance saga and the Star Wars saga. Are you aware of these parallels? If so, what was your reasoning for having them in your series?”
u/permanerd asked: “As a serial first chapter writer, I was wondering about your process. While I know no book is totally written before you start, do you find the main story points come to you in a flash of inspiration or does the story unravels as you write?”
u/brackenish1 asked: “I recently had my girlfriend of a couple years break things off. It stings a lot and I thought about writing something, a kind of timeline/story of the relationship. It seems like a spur of the moment thought and I wanted to know if you thought the experience would be cathartic or if I’m just clinging to something I should let go.”
u/EmelieJensen asked: “My biggest dream is to write a book and use my imagination. After months of thinking I finally got the right idea to my story, inspired of my favourite books and stories. But sometimes I think it is hard to write and to create a whole new world. I just want to ask you if you have some advice for a young writer/reader to continue writing until the end because I love to write, and I want this idea to become a story one day?”
u/canernm asked: “Do you think that writing is only an option to those who have a talent for it, or someone not as talented in this could write a good book?”
u/Kefale asked: “1. What books have influenced your character and mindset the most? 2. What philosophies and religions do you find interesting? 3. Do you have any experience with lucid dreaming? 4.(Certainly already answered) How do you motivate yourself to keep writing? 5. Would you rather die in the next 5 seconds or live forever (and see all your family members and friends see dying)?”
u/Fantasy_mage asked: “How did you create the ancient/dwarf/urgal language? Is it a combination of different languages or made-up?”
Be sure to check out parts one, two, three, and five of Christopher’s AMA round-up!