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Brandon Sanderson Lecture 2: Plots by outlining (2/5)

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In this lecture, Brandon describes his preferred method of generating cool plots and stories. Next up: Plots by discovery at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r4ei-2ar68U. See the entire class in one place with notes at http://www.writeaboutdragons.com/home/brandon_w2012/ Help us caption & translate this video! http://amara.org/v/CVfa/
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Text Comments (96)
MountainRain (5 months ago)
I love how he just throws out gummy bears like dog treats
Arch Linux (6 months ago)
I like how he coughs repeatedly and hands people gummi bears with the same hand
BadWolfKnight (7 months ago)
OMG girl who's bad at catching stuff.. don't say 'like' so many times.. you are going to be a writer for god's sake.. Articulate! Form questions in your head before asking!! Good questions though. Great lectures. Exactly what I needed to hear today.
timevampire83 (7 months ago)
Brandon Sanderson is T H I C C
Darkstar (8 months ago)
A-fucking-mazing Brandon Sanderson is such a bro. I really want to read Mistborn now.
Mist Spirit (9 months ago)
I love the hat. That really makes that a good look.
Greymort (1 year ago)
I disagree with one point. Names are very important to me. Have it memorable and stand out to people. I love amazing names for things. For example. Mordor, shire aragorn, frodo, gandalf, voltemort, draco malfoy, legolas, wraith king of angmar. I spend alot of time coming up with names. They also have to fit with the story as well.
dead awake3 (1 year ago)
When he says a romantic subplot, you should ask yourself what things need to happen for this end to be good/special. It hit me, I thought of the same thing my first time writing. I might be a natural. If I get published Ill let you all know
SotraEngine4 (1 year ago)
If you are bilingual, and you have several countries, is it ok to have one of the languages in one country and the other language in the other country? Like English in one country and perhaps Spanish in another? Or do you absolutely have to make new languages?
Mark JN (1 year ago)
Summary: "The way that I generate books" Mist on road; brilliant stained glass windows. Headings: "Plot" ; "setting" ; "character" Character: "Character is one or two lines with their major passions and conflicts. I won't go to far into who they become." Plot: "I plot backward and write forward." Outline: "Make it awesome first and then force it to make sense. Start with the coolest moments, actually scenes. Work backward. What has to happen BEFORE such scenes. What things will have to occur first? Outline backward, write forward." "Naming stuff isn't important." Setting can divided into physical and culture, which would exist with or without the people. "Don't think you have to do it all."
berniemacsgreatesthi (1 year ago)
Those big ass pants -_-
Benjamin Lehmann (1 year ago)
This guy is great! I love the content of these videos - so clear and insightful! Many thanks!
Stitchpuppy01 (1 year ago)
Nobody take Space Penguins! That's mine now!
Cole Kash (2 years ago)
he described the dark tower so good there with all those things crammed into one story lol
Stratocaster893 (2 years ago)
Hey, I want a gummy bear.
Mr S (2 years ago)
brandon is a fantasy writer like his prophet joseph smith...
Franchesca (2 years ago)
all i ask is for is a better mic so we can hear the quetions as will as his answers great job
The Ramen Man (2 years ago)
OMG these are great! :D so glad i found tbis channel, maybe now my Role Playing campaign will have a good plot! XD
James Etling (2 years ago)
You are making this up as you go along. Awesome writer though, love the advice and knowledge you give along the way.
Sam (2 years ago)
Lol even that later on in schooling you get gummy bear rewards :D
MinnesotaLG (3 years ago)
If you guys are getting rattled over a man coughing and tossing out gummy bears you'd have a really hard time behind the scenes at most restaurants you go to.
Carlos Emanuel Martins (2 years ago)
true story .
John Lance (3 years ago)
One of the things I've always liked about Mr. Sanderson's work is that he knows how to build heroic characters with interesting flaws that don't regress into the tired "anti-heroes" that spill out of every book I seem to open these days (seriously, if you finish a book and think that everyone in it was an awful person that you would never want to meet, that is a bad thing). I'll have to check out the rest of these videos and see how he builds his characters so that he doesn't get trip up by this tendency to make everyone (and everything) "gritty".
unstaible child (1 year ago)
we just got gritty dont bash it yet! well bounce back to adam west batman and superman
J.C. Henry (3 years ago)
I wish I saw these videos 4 years ago. Well better late than never. I agree with commentator below me, these vids are great.
Bish Fish (3 years ago)
Guys, you can hear plastic rustling when he goes in the bowl for the gummy bears. They're probably in little packets. Also, that graph isn't a parabola. But that's okay.
HyperToxBox64 (1 year ago)
diefacingourfoes Yeah, the chances of him throwing a single gummy bear across the room and the other guy being able to catch it are quite low. It's just like how you would order "one chip" from a takeaway when you mean a box.
Bish Fish (3 years ago)
I would read the space penguin book tbh.
Liamthegreat2008 (1 year ago)
I would at least watch the clips of the movie with the space penguins
shaitarn (2 years ago)
I was just thinking the same thing!
Christian Shiels (3 years ago)
I'm loving these Videos. Seriously and Truthfully loving these.
Onyxianz (3 years ago)
So many people saying how digusting those gummy bears must be and so few saying how great these videos are.
Kami (3 years ago)
+Onyx ianz You are my hero. 
Onyxianz (3 years ago)
Kami (3 years ago)
+Onyx ianz (Onyxianz) "I'll take this chip...!"
Mionysus (4 years ago)
* All the students who ate the contaminated gummy bears eventually died of the flu :'(
Máté Kovács (1 year ago)
And become zombies afterwards.
Claire Bolda (4 years ago)
As a writer and an etymologist, I was expressly sad that writers aren't supposed to spend a lot of times on names, although I know it's good advice.
MountainRain (5 months ago)
Claire Bolda they aren’t supposed to spend all week on it, but it’s alright to go a little in depth
Nexus Wolf (1 year ago)
I'd say that he was talking more about giving basic structure and substance to the world first before going for names. Writing comes down to your personal touch as well. If your speciality is etymology, surely giving it that touch will just make it all the more original. Brandon is giving advice on a general basis, not specifically. Then again, this comment is 3 years old lol
HyperToxBox64 (1 year ago)
Claire Bolda Agreed. I spend a lot if time creating clever names or just ones whose meaning or etymology matches the personality of the character. I feel as though if you're not bothered enough to come up with a good name for a character, then they probably aren't important enough to deserve a name.
Chris Foote (4 years ago)
Dorky hat? No problem. Mom jeans? Fine. Tossing gummy bears to students from the hand you've been coughing into for the last half hour?  Might want to rethink that.
Contessa Adella (29 days ago)
Yeah.....but it’s “Brandon Sanderson cough” on those bears.......makes the students better writers!
Máté Kovács (7 months ago)
@Lukas Sprehn What I wanted to say is that people aren't made out of marshmallows. Unless Brandon has colera, which (well) developed countries usually vaccinate against, then they were fine. The fact that there are no plagues and such rampaging through eastern europe indicates that this level of (un)sanitary conditions is still "bearable". You are also not helping less developed countries. You are helping countries that didn't develop at all. Eastern europe just gets dissed every time they make hard decisions, and are laughed at when following their traditions.
Lukas Sprehn (7 months ago)
+Máté Kovács We can't help others if we don't help ourselves. If everyone in our part of the world got sick, we wouldn't be able to help sick in less developed countries.
Máté Kovács (1 year ago)
And now think about hygiene level in other, less developed countries, like the various slavs for example. They happy if the teacher don't vomit his stomach alcoholic contents on their desk.
Stettafire (2 years ago)
As a student I can say one thing fairly safely... We don't care O_O I mean you need to see the state of our kitchens
marcus thatcher (4 years ago)
Dude I love your books, but ditch the mom jeans...
Jennifer O Burghardt (4 years ago)
I love these videos and I am very grateful for them.
snapefangirl (4 years ago)
space penguins!
Eleanor (4 years ago)
I've perused many books about writing but this is *exactly* what I needed. Thank you!
trevork1980 (4 years ago)
Wow, is it possible for her to say "like" one more time? I hope she writes better than she speaks or the class is a waste of time.
unstaible child (1 year ago)
like you now what like in a story like generally developing like a like
thomasofthearkt (2 years ago)
Okay I just heard her second question. Yes every other word was "like". I hope you're right she doesn't write the same way she speaks
thomasofthearkt (2 years ago)
I sometimes drop "like" too many times if I get nervous talking in front of a group of strangers.
trevork1980 (4 years ago)
Dan Gee (3 years ago)
God damn it... didn't even see that -_-
Noah Hill (3 years ago)
And you removed the extra "m" that made the whole thing funny bro!!!!
Dan Gee (3 years ago)
(You missed the exclamation mark bro)
Noah Hill (3 years ago)
Either my joke went over your head, or yours is going over mine.
Dan Gee (3 years ago)
+Noah Hill "TURN OFF YOUR PHONES MORONS!" - There, I fixed that for you also.
oriac1212 (4 years ago)
Yikes! I can't help imagining a plot where the bubonic plague is spread via coughed-in (18:58) hands that toss gummy bears to students.  The floor is the least of their worries.
Jessica Lindly (4 years ago)
Why did you start writing? There, I asked a question. Where is ,y gummy bear!!!!
Garran of Vagnol (3 years ago)
That is a magnificent hat.
kira rl (4 years ago)
I wonder what people having classes after them think when they see all those gummy bears on the floor
PrideOfFantasy100 (4 years ago)
I love how the only insults to Sanderson is about his hat and weight. It's called WoT series character Mat and having kids. Any parent will know you gain weight after you get kids, whether you want to or not.  Also, this is good... It's solid info that is helpful to any writer. And remember, guys, there are exceptions to every rule, so there are going to be exceptions to what Sanderson says. 
MountainRain (5 months ago)
You phrased it like he was the pregnant one lol but yeah that makes sense. Parents prob wouldn’t have had enough time to focus on their diets. Some people lose weight too
FocusMrbjarke (11 months ago)
PrideOfFantasy100 none of my parents are fat nor most of any other parents I know of
Mary Ann Millhouse (5 years ago)
Thanks for these wonderful classes. I'm at this point I'm an independent writer with higher goals. I feel by watching these classes that I'm on the right track. Can't wait to watch them all.
Kevin Stoy (5 years ago)
The man is a genius.
yelsaewnor (5 years ago)
this is made of awesome
Aaron Heil (6 years ago)
As terrible as that hat is, it does help me find which videos go in order.
nipponaihito (6 years ago)
Totally came to Sanderson from "The Way of Kings" and loved the reference.
ChequeWriter (6 years ago)
Jeff Ragsdale (6 years ago)
Oh, I know. lol I took it the right way. :-)
David Bankson (6 years ago)
I'm not claiming this is a fashion show. This was in response to someone asking about it.
Jeff Ragsdale (6 years ago)
Were Brandon wearing a jacket/blazer, the hat would work. Then again, this is a lecture - not a fashion show. :-)
Jeff Ragsdale (6 years ago)
Someone needs a day or two with one Carson Kressley.
Jill Jackson (6 years ago)
As much as I adore him, I don't think I'd eat a gummy bear after he coughed all over his hands....
JamSamJackx (6 years ago)
He giving out gummy bears as he coughs all over his hands?? No one thinks thats gross? Good video otherwise hahaha
Aluenvey (6 years ago)
I usually write maybe three pages of world building, write about ten or so character profiles, and then write down the top five worst things to happen to each character.
David Bankson (6 years ago)
It actually is a pork pie hat, and it just so happens that Robert Jordan commonly wore a sombrero cordobés.
SamuelDaram (6 years ago)
thank you to 'WriteAboutDragons' for sharing these Brandon Sanderson videos.
Fredward Alexandru (6 years ago)
I have a hard time outlining, but I cannot write coherently without a firm grasp of where the story is going. Without an outline, I usually find myself feeling lost and confused after the first ten thousand words or so. Sometimes it feels good to the let the story flow through me as if I were channeling some mystical tale from time immemorial, and other times it feels like putting a pen in a panda's hand and expecting him to write works that rival those of Shakespeare.
NimlotSRV (6 years ago)
"It's the law of being in college; if it's free you eat it, doesn't matter if you like it or not, or where it's been." ~ Brandon Sanderson
Running Thru Flowers (6 years ago)
WriteAboutDragons: Thank you for uploading all of these! ...I actually did want a gummy bear thrown at the camera.... it would make me feel like I'm actually in the class.
Todd Greener (7 years ago)
Links to the next video are good, but I would really like videos uploaded in order or playlists of entire lectures in order on the channel site.
Write About Dragons (7 years ago)
Earlier this year. This is taken from the Winter 2012 Class.
Ben Love (7 years ago)
I like the hat. I was trying to describe it to a friend of mine...
Ben Love (7 years ago)
And, why the hat?
Ben Love (7 years ago)
How long ago was this recorded?
sai shiva (8 months ago)
sai shiva (8 months ago)

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