THE WHEEL OF TIME DEEP DIVE ep. 2 Shadow’s Waiting

My (SPOLIER-FILLED) deep dive into episode 2 of The Wheel of Time.

These are my deep look into each episode of Amazon Prime’s The Wheel of Time. I will investigate each episode in depth and give my reactions, thoughts, and takeaways. These dives are for book readers as they contain heavy spoilers throughout while I weigh each episode against my knowledge of the books and story and will touch upon things throughout the books. I will focus on the episode itself and will not delve into future episodes.

INITIAL REACTIONS

Summary

This episode, entitled “Shadow’s Waiting”-,” was where the story really begins picking up. In my initial reaction blog, I had called it a transition episode. I stand by that as it takes us from the original introductions to the characters and story of the first episode and begins moving the story to a new mile marker (which could be considered the latter half of episode 3 considering where they go and what happens after). Throughout, there are plenty of opportunities where the characters can pause for development and further understanding. This is good as it helps us the viewer get their bearings regarding the plot and figuring out who’s who. There are a couple of great moments in this episode that I just loved. I will get into those further below.

FINAL WARNING: Following this paragraph will contain HEAVY SPOILERS of the episode and my reference any point in any of the books. If you have not read the books or seen the episode and want to avoid spoilers, DO NOT READ ON until you have done so. You HAVE been WARNED!

EPISODE DISECTION

Plot

This episode started out with a bang with the introduction of The Children of the Light (often referred to as White Cloaks). You see the Questioner, Eamon Valda (Abdul Salis). This was a scene that I was waiting for sense getting a glimpse of it in the trailer. In the books, I mostly saw the White Cloaks as an annoyance and not much of a menace. With this scene, they set the group up, especially the questioners, as a real threat.

The White Cloak cold open was followed by the opening credits which I love. I enjoyed the way that it showed the “Pattern of the Ages” being brought together and showcasing the lore through the elegant tapestries. I believe this opening beats even The Game of Thrones opening with its elegance and beauty.

Then we cut to Moiraine, Lan, and the villagers galloping across the landscape. They are in a mad rush and successfully leading the menace away from the village. A moment of respite follows as they board the ferry crossing just in time to escape the horde of trollocs on their tails.  As a scene (largely) from the books, I enjoyed the nuances. Of course, there were many differences, but none too jarring. Eventually, after the loss of the ferryman, they reach a clearing where they get to finally take a break for a bit before continuing their journey.

During their rest, Moiraine pulls Egwene aside and explains to her that she can use the one power. While Egwene was upset over the incident at the river crossing, Moiraine gives her a lesson on the practicality of the world. She starts off by reciting the three oaths of the Aes Sedai which I loved hearing in full instead of the abridged version we got in the

From there, we return to a couple scenes with Egwene and Rand then Egwene and Perrin (who is brooding by the fire and nursing an injury on his leg). Then we get the dream sequence where Rand pulls a bat out of his mouth and sees a dark figure. The dreams were prominent in the books (and in my opinion, sometimes annoying as they would break the beat of the story). I liked how it was implemented here. Rand then challenges Moiraine here and there are some character moments that I will get back to in a bit. It was also here where we get the line that we first heard from the table read well over 2 years ago at the beginning of the show’s production.

On the move again, the party encounters a legion of White Cloaks. Again, Sails shines as Valda. He brings a flare of villainy to the character that will make him among the most hated villains in the series, I am sure. After parting from the White Cloaks, they head into one of the highlight scenes of the episode.

The song of Manetheren was beautiful. And it was clear that the group had sung it before. They had pretty good harmony together. In any case, this leads to Moiraine giving her epic speech about the last stand of Manetheren.  While moved from when it was recited in the books, it is great to hear the speech in all its glory here. It is also moving and gives an insight into the core of our villager gang and the stock they come from.

Following the tale, they come to another resting stop. Egwene and Rand confront each other about their feelings and Perrin has a meeting with a pack of wolves. This was an exciting moment as fans of the book are almost positive who the wolf that licks his wound is. During their rest, they are interrupted when they realize that the trollocs and fade have caught up with them. With Moiraine weakened by the wound she suffered in the first episode, they soon rush into the abandoned city of Shadar Logoth.

They seek refuge and Lan gives the group a rundown of the history of the city.  They rest again and Mat and Perrin have a touching moment. However, he soon does what the warder warned him not to do and he touches something, a knife he found amidst some rubble in the city. It is unclear whether this act triggers the evil or if it was just happenstance, but this sets off the mad rush to escape the city, splitting up in the progress.

The episode concludes with a moment of epic-ness where a trollocs blade is held to Lan’s throat as he tends to Moiraine. He turns to find that the holder of that blade is Nynaeve.

Characters

A number of character moments occur in this episode now that the show is able to move pass the introductions of the pilot. We see Rand and Egwene’s relationship starting to fracture following their ‘breakup’ in the first episode. It is clear that bitterness is setting in for Rand. While some decry this as melodrama, I feel that it is not far off from what would happen. The characters are overwhelmed by many emotions having lost friends and loved ones and leaving their homes. I am not saying that Rand is in the right for how he behaves, but that I could see this happening in a real-life situation (so to speak). They do seem to resolve the tension a bit later before the group splits.

Perrin is undergoing some grief, understandably so. And he reveals that he has a wound that he has been hiding from the group. Why he is hiding it is not sure. Is he scared to have Moiraine heal it? At this point, it is not revealed. Though it sets up his encounter with the wolf later on in the episode.

Mat starts coming into his own in this episode. The first episode introduced him as a scoundrel with a heart. Here we have him trying to be the levity of the group. I mentioned before his line from the table read. I also noticed when the White Cloaks order the group off their horses, he remains on his while the rest begin dismounting. Even though the next cut shows him already dismounted, it just shows his independence and defiant spirit. I also enjoyed his quip about Lan when they were in Shadar Logoth. Of course, this is also where he makes a fateful mistake that will change him for the rest of the series.

While she was only in the episode for a few seconds, Nynaeve shines here a bit as she gets the drop on Lan in the closing scene. It was the perfect closing point and sets up something that many book fans have been waiting to see.

Special Effects / Action

While we get some better look at trollocs throughout this episode – and I say they look good – I do hope that the only battles with them will all be at night. It seems that is the case whenever we see them in the series. I enjoyed the effects of the whirlpool on the river when Moiraine destroys the ferry. Perhaps the highlight effect of the episode was in the opening shots when we see the Aes Sedai being burned through the reflection on the goblet.

Other than that, most of the effects seemed well. I have heard some complain that mashidar (the mindless entity that attacks them in Shadar Logoth) was an inky blackness and not a mist as seen in the books, but I was ok with how it was portrayed. That leads me to the only real action in the episode, the escape from Shadar Logoth.

OVERALL FEELING

Summary

Overall, this was an excellent episode. After the 1st episode (of which I have watched a couple more times since posting my in-depth analysis the other day and I suppose I can see the complaints over the pacing of the first episode) this one is where the series begins to find its footing. There are great character moments as the story begins its transition from the introduction to the heart. Speaking of introductions, bringing in the White Cloaks at this point is a highlight. While in the books, their introduction makes them out to be more of a joke, this introduction provides them as a larger threat.

LINKS

First Thoughts

The Wheel of Time First Thoughts – Episodes 1 – 3 – S. J.Serio (sjserio.com)

The Wheel of Time First Thoughts – Episode 4 (Spoiler Free) – S. J.Serio (sjserio.com)

The Wheel of Time First Thoughts – Episode 5 (Spoiler Free) – S. J.Serio (sjserio.com)

The Wheel of Time First Thoughts – Episode 6 (Spoiler Free) – S. J.Serio (sjserio.com)

The Wheel of Time First Thoughts – Episode 7 (Spoiler Free) – S. J.Serio (sjserio.com)

The Wheel of Time First Thoughts – Episode 8 (Spoiler Free) – S. J.Serio (sjserio.com)

Deep Dives

THE WHEEL OF TIME DEEP DIVE ep. 1 Leavetaking – S. J.Serio (sjserio.com)

*******

THE WHEEL OF TIME DEEP DIVE ep. 3 A Place of Safety – S. J.Serio (sjserio.com)

THE WHEEL OF TIME DEEP DIVE ep. 4 The Dragon Reborn – S. J.Serio (sjserio.com)

THE WHEEL OF TIME DEEP DIVE ep. 5 Blood Calls Blood – S. J.Serio (sjserio.com)

THE WHEEL OF TIME DEEP DIVE ep. 6 The Flame of Tar Valon – S. J.Serio (sjserio.com)

THE WHEEL OF TIME DEEP DIVE ep. 7 The Dark Along the Ways – S. J.Serio (sjserio.com)

THE WHEEL OF TIME DEEP DIVE ep. 8 The Eye of the World – S. J.Serio (sjserio.com)

THE WHEEL OF TIME DEEP DIVE ep. 1 Leavetaking

My (SPOLIER-FILLED) deep dive into episode 1 of The Wheel of Time.

These are my deep look into each episode of Amazon Prime’s The Wheel of Time. I will investigate each episode in depth and give my reactions, thoughts, and takeaways. These dives are for book readers as they contain heavy spoilers throughout while I weigh each episode against my knowledge of the books and story and will touch upon things throughout the books. I will focus on the episode itself and will not delve into future episodes.

INITIAL REACTIONS

Summary

It has been a couple days since I first watched episode 1 of The Wheel of Time entitled “Leavetaking.”  The dust has begun to settle, and my thoughts have come clearer. I have since watched the episode several times (and will likely watch it a couple more times as I still have people that I have yet to watch it with) and looked at countless reviews, reactions, and recaps online. I posted my initial reaction almost immediately. While I haven’t changed my mind too much on any aspect, some elements have come to me (either through personal thought or through realizations from others’ reactions) that I feel I may need to delve into more.

FINAL WARNING: Following this paragraph will contain HEAVY SPOILERS of the episode and my reference any point in any of the books. If you have not read the books or seen the episode and want to avoid spoilers, DO NOT READ ON until you have done so. You HAVE been WARNED!

Moiraine (Rosamund Pike) walks through the village.

EPISODE DISECTION

Plot

The episode opens with Moiraine (Rosamund Pike) getting dressed as she prepares to set out on her ‘mission.’ During the sequence, she gives a monologue about the arrogance of men and how the women were left to fix it. This is kind of setting the tone for the series and shows that men are often regarded in a negative light. The next scene shows two men running from a group of women in red. It turns out that one of the men is a male who can channel, and the other man does not exist. The women, of course, are Red Ajah Aes Sedai who are there to gentle him.

I did enjoy this opening sequence. While I heard some others say that they did not like the man being hunted by the Aes Sedai, I thought it did well in showing the stakes for men in this world. It leads to Moiraine and Lan (Daniel Henney) on a mountain top after observing the capture of the man. It then segues to the Two Rivers where we begin to meet the rest of the main cast.

It was fun going through and meeting the rest of the cast in their elements. Egwene (Madeleine Madden) and Nynaeve (Zoë Robins) in the women’s circle ceremony, Rand (Josha Stradowski) on the quarry road with his father (Tam, played by Michael McElhatton), and Mat (Barney Harris) and Perrin (Marcus Rutherford) in the inn were all great introductions. Though it DID make Mat seem like a jerk at first, we later see that he has heart. I’ll talk about that later when I talk about characters because I have conflicting feelings regarding his arc in this series.

From this point on through to the climactic sequence of the episode, we have several character moments and interactions. Moiraine and Lan arriving at the inn, Rand and Egwene discussing their future, Moiraine talking with Nynaeve, Rand and Tam at their cabin, among other scenes. Many of these scenes did their job in setting the foundations for the conflicts that the main characters will be carrying on through the season and (potentially) the series. Again, most of those points I will discuss below in the Characters section.

Overall, I didn’t mind the plot and pacing. I know many have complained about the pacing of this first episode. While I did notice a couple rushed cuts — like going from Lan asking Moiraine if she knew which person was their target, then cutting immediately to Egwene and Rand in the inn (I felt a small lingering shot on Moiraine would have made that cut better) — I felt that most of the pacing was fine as we got our introductions and some basic interactions.

Then we got to the hook of the first episode, the climactic Wintersnight battle. This is where the episode really came to life. Another complaint that I heard before the show even released was the use of shaky cam during the battle. This was concerning as I am not a big fan of the technique. Fortunately for me, it was not a problem and I barely noticed it during my initial viewing.

The battle itself took place in several different “fronts.” There were several character defining moments throughout the battle. Seeing Nynaeve roar at the trollocs and Mat seeking out his sisters were key moments that added nuance to the characters. At the conclusion of the battle, of course, the setup was for the group to leave the Two Rivers and begin their journey. I felt that did seem a bit stilted going from the epic battle straight to the group leaving. It took barely any convincing for them to leave — though I understood (and maybe this is where the pacing complaint came in). They had to get the group on the road for the next episode. Still, I feel that was the most jarring aspect.

One note, I am beginning to think that the reason why they include Egwene as a contender for being the Dragon Reborn is to make it easier to get her on the road. In the books, there is a whole setup with it just being the boys and in secret. All that is said is that the dark one wanted one of the boys. When they left, Egwene snuck in like Merry and Pippen at the Council of Elrond saying, “you’re not leaving without me.” I think it just made it easier to include her as a target and move on.

Characters

Rand (Josha Stradowski) and Egwene (Madeleine Madden) share an intimate time.

Rosamund Pike and Daniel Henney were excellent as Moiraine and Lan (respectively). They captured the true heart of each character. From the bathtub scene to the battle, their chemistry was spot on. Also great were the portrayals of Rand, Egwene, and Nynaeve. Josha, Madeleine, and Zoe gave great performances and really embodied the essence of their characters. Michael McElhatton also shines as he transitions from the father everybody hates to the father everybody loves. Overall, I am happy with the cast listed above and the directions they are going with their plots… even the changes that were made with their characters.

There were two characters that I must spend a little bit of time with and delve deeper. The first of which being Perrin. To be honest, I was dreading the rumor that he was married in the show for a long time. How it would impact his story was of great concern. Getting to see it play out gave me mixed feelings. On the positive side, I feel that I understand the change and the reason for its inclusion. With Perring being an internal character, it gives a motivation for his actions throughout the series. On the other hand, not enough time was spent building up their relationship. Laila (Helena Westerman) barely had any dialogue and the few scenes they had together were hardly enough to develop a connection.

When the fateful scene comes where Perrin accidentally kills her, you feel for him. But it is hard to feel for her. There were certainly aspects that seem implied and that the audience was supposed to get. But so far, there is no indication of those were true. Namely, that she was (at some point) pregnant. Likely she miscarried before the show. But so far, there is no indication if this is the case. Regardless, Marcus Rutherford gave an excellent performance and I look forward to seeing him develop the character in the future. It is a challenge as Perrin has little dialogue and most of the acting will be visual.

The other character I want to focus on is Mat. In the books, Mat comes to be my favorite character in the series. Though, admittedly, not in the first few books. They made some interesting changes, most notably to his parents, Abell (Christopher Sciuref) and Natti (Juliet Howland). I was a little upset about this change because they did Abell dirty. In the books, he was a respectable horse trader. His role was small, but he was formidable as Tam’s sidekick later in the series. In the show, they turned him into a selfish lecher. His mother is not portrayed much better.

Despite this, I ultimately found that it was helpful in establishing Mat. Despite his love of gambling and his devil-may-care attitude, he obviously loves his sisters and will do anything for them. This adds a nobility to his character that wasn’t seen in the books until much later. With that aspect of his character settled in my mind, there was one more problem… that of the actor portraying him, Barney Harris.

Let it be said that I did love his performance as far as the attitude, the jokes, and what not. I think Harris captured the heart of Mat. The problem I had was with his voice. Harris had a kind of lazy draw when speaking that just didn’t feel right for Mat. I don’t know if I am under the influence of the knowledge that he has been replaced, or if others who have been praising his performance without complaint are under that influence. I just feel like that voice did not fit, though he nailed the other aspects of Mat. Perhaps I am just preparing myself for the new actor taking his place next season (Dónal Finn).

Special Effects / Action

Moiraine (Pike) unleashes her fury.

For the most part, the special effects were good. I loved the look of the trollocs and the fade(s). The action played out pretty good as well. Moiraine and Lan had excellent coordination during the battle and the choreography, overall, felt great. During the battle, I did notice some “glitches” in the effects that screamed CGI. But for the most part, it was forgivable as it was overall good.

OVERALL FEELING

Overall, I enjoyed the episode. I felt it hit the right beats and the changes, for the most part, are acceptable. The effects and CGI were excellent except for a few areas, especially during the battle. It set the stage for what was to come and as a book reader, I was invested to see how it would play out. The changes, though I was concerned, did not push me off too much. There are still aspects that concern me that I will get into later as they really came to light by the third episode. But I am happy with the overall direction they are going with the show and how this episode kicks it all off.

LINKS

First Thoughts

The Wheel of Time First Thoughts – Episodes 1 – 3 – S. J.Serio (sjserio.com)

The Wheel of Time First Thoughts – Episode 4 (Spoiler Free) – S. J.Serio (sjserio.com)

The Wheel of Time First Thoughts – Episode 5 (Spoiler Free) – S. J.Serio (sjserio.com)

The Wheel of Time First Thoughts – Episode 6 (Spoiler Free) – S. J.Serio (sjserio.com)

The Wheel of Time First Thoughts – Episode 7 (Spoiler Free) – S. J.Serio (sjserio.com)

The Wheel of Time First Thoughts – Episode 8 (Spoiler Free) – S. J.Serio (sjserio.com)

Deep Dives

*******

THE WHEEL OF TIME DEEP DIVE ep. 2 Shadow’s Waiting – S. J.Serio (sjserio.com)

THE WHEEL OF TIME DEEP DIVE ep. 3 A Place of Safety – S. J.Serio (sjserio.com)

THE WHEEL OF TIME DEEP DIVE ep. 4 The Dragon Reborn – S. J.Serio (sjserio.com)

THE WHEEL OF TIME DEEP DIVE ep. 5 Blood Calls Blood – S. J.Serio (sjserio.com)

THE WHEEL OF TIME DEEP DIVE ep. 6 The Flame of Tar Valon – S. J.Serio (sjserio.com)

THE WHEEL OF TIME DEEP DIVE ep. 7 The Dark Along the Ways – S. J.Serio (sjserio.com)

THE WHEEL OF TIME DEEP DIVE ep. 8 The Eye of the World – S. J.Serio (sjserio.com)

The Wheel of Time First Thoughts – Episodes 1 – 3

My general thoughts and reaction to The Wheel of Time tv series on Amazon Prime

It has been a long wait. Now, like many who have been anxiously awaiting, I have the chance watch the first three episodes of The Wheel of Time. I am excited, anxious, worried, and giddy. Such a mix of emotions over a TV show. Below are my spoiler-free first takes, broken down by each episode. In depth analysis to come later. Without further ado, let’s get to it.

EPISODE 1 – LEAVETAKING

The first episode was… wow! Yes, there were a lot of changes from the books. But, I do not mind (most of) them. I am writing this having just completed the first episode and anxious to move on to the next. I am trying to put my thoughts down without giving anything away. That is a difficult task. As I said earlier, I will go in depth later this weekend. Perhaps after a couple more rewatches (and some thorough notetaking).  

Overall, I enjoyed the episode. I have heard complaints of pacing, but I thought it was fine, personally. Then again, I am a book reader, so that may affect my take on it. There were points that I was a little skeptical on, but I will have to wait and see how they develop. Still, even some of the changes that I wasn’t very happy with struck at my emotions as they played out on screen. The last 10 minutes or so had me gripped, quivering, and even cheering at certain moments.

It certainly left me wanting more. With that in mind… on to the next episode.

EPISODE 2 – SHADOW’S WAITING

Episode 2 was a great transition episode. There were some great character moments to further connect the viewer with them. I can’t go too deep into the episode without spoilers, but I can say that I was pleased. It WAS a transition episode, as I said, so there were slow moments. But that allowed us to get deeper into the characters. When the action picked up again toward the end, it had an epic payoff. If I were to rate these episodes from my first reactions, I would say that this episode was on par with the first episode (maybe an 8 out of 10) but for different reasons.

The only other thing that I will say is that I love the intro to the show. I will cover this more in my deep dive blog for the episode.

Episode 3 – A PLACE OF SAFETY

This episode was perhaps great! The gripping opening was amazing. It did slow down a bit as it approached the middle. The differences from the books were less bothersome as more elements were introduced. I was on the edge of my seat as it came to its conclusion. I will say after watching these three episodes that it is a pleasure watching the characters interact with each other. There is great chemistry between them. There are many thoughts as I digest what I just watched.

BONUS VIDEOS

Along with the released episodes, three “micro stories” were released as well through the XRAY feature on Amazon Prime. Short animations that tell further tales from the Wheel of Time. Each video is interesting as they provide short snippets of the world Robert Jordan created. Each of the three videos released so far are stories that can be found in the books or their supplements. Some may not be too keen on the animation style of each video, but they were overall enjoyable to enhance the main story.

Conclusion

Having watched all three episodes, I am over the moon with excitement. There ARE changes from the books, some of which I like, some of which I’m not too big of a fan. For the latter, I am willing to give it a shot and see how they develop it. For the most part, I am happy with what I have seen. These characters that I have followed for over a decade now are now brought to life. They feel like the characters, despite the changes to the story.

Don’t get me wrong, the story is not completely changed. It is hitting many of the same beats. And some moments were shifted or done in another way. It will be interesting to see how they develop. If there is one thing that I am sorely upset about, it is that I do not recall hearing a single WoT swear throughout all three episodes. That is a big disappointment. Maybe I just missed them in my viewing. I will have to rewatch to see if that is the case.Well, there is one other thing that could be considered a problem. I have to wait a whole week for the next episode. I am pumped to see what happens next.

LINKS

First Thoughts

***

The Wheel of Time First Thoughts – Episode 4 (Spoiler Free) – S. J.Serio (sjserio.com)

The Wheel of Time First Thoughts – Episode 5 (Spoiler Free) – S. J.Serio (sjserio.com)

The Wheel of Time First Thoughts – Episode 6 (Spoiler Free) – S. J.Serio (sjserio.com)

The Wheel of Time First Thoughts – Episode 7 (Spoiler Free) – S. J.Serio (sjserio.com)

The Wheel of Time First Thoughts – Episode 8 (Spoiler Free) – S. J.Serio (sjserio.com)

Deep Dives

THE WHEEL OF TIME DEEP DIVE ep. 1 Leavetaking – S. J.Serio (sjserio.com)

THE WHEEL OF TIME DEEP DIVE ep. 2 Shadow’s Waiting – S. J.Serio (sjserio.com)

THE WHEEL OF TIME DEEP DIVE ep. 3 A Place of Safety – S. J.Serio (sjserio.com)

THE WHEEL OF TIME DEEP DIVE ep. 4 The Dragon Reborn – S. J.Serio (sjserio.com)

THE WHEEL OF TIME DEEP DIVE ep. 5 Blood Calls Blood – S. J.Serio (sjserio.com)

THE WHEEL OF TIME DEEP DIVE ep. 6 The Flame of Tar Valon – S. J.Serio (sjserio.com)

THE WHEEL OF TIME DEEP DIVE ep. 7 The Dark Along the Ways – S. J.Serio (sjserio.com)

THE WHEEL OF TIME DEEP DIVE ep. 8 The Eye of the World – S. J.Serio (sjserio.com)

The Wheel of Time Premieres and Reactions

Unfortunately, I did not get to attend any of the premieres of The Wheel of Time. However, those that did attend have begun giving spoiler-free reactions and there is hope…

The Wheel of Time TV Series has been a long time coming. There are videos, articles and blogs around the internet that detail the journey that it has taken to get an adaptation filmed. This week, #TheWeekofWoT, the first season finally premieres. Well, the first two episodes were shown last yesterday to select audiences and the first three episodes will be available to all on Amazon Prime this Friday. The anticipation is heavy for this adaptation, especially for those of us who have been fans for the past decades since the first book in the series, The Eye of the World, was released in January of 1990.

In select cities across the globe, many gathered to partake in the first two episodes. Sadly, I as not one of them. Though saddened by this fact, I am not bitter. I am happy for those who got to attend. If anything, I am most jealous over the swag they received… but I digress. In a few days, I will be glued to the screen as I take in the episodes for myself. Perhaps it is better that way for me – to absorb it all in solitary. I am sure that I will watch the episodes again (and again) with other company around.

For the past 10 years, I have largely engrossed myself in the world BY myself. I have not had much luck in convincing my friends and family to check out the novels. 14 novels of around 800 – 1,000 words per book can be very intimidating (and that is not including the prequel novel. Some people in my life have been “forced” to listen as I played the audiobooks in my car or while washing dishes, folding laundry, or other house chores. Now, they will be able to see the world unfold on screen with me and come to understand why I love the series so much.

Again, I digress. So, the show has had its premiere on the world stage. In London, a lucky few not only got to see the first two episodes, but to hobnob with the cast and crew of the show on the blue carpet (at least, it looked blue to me, as opposed to red). Links to those videos are below (along with a slew of other videos to help pull you in if you are not already a part of the action.

Check out this awesome “billboard” in England. I wish I could’ve see this in person.

Following the premiere, a few lucky YouTubers and fans have begun to post their (spoiler-free) reactions to the first two episodes. They’ll have to wait until Friday like the rest of us plebes for the third episode… so at least we are on equal footing there. In fact, some of the gripes I have heard is that they MUST wait… they want more. That is a good sign. There were suggestions that they weren’t completely happy with every little aspect. Some questionable decisions, changes they didn’t like, etc. But they really couldn’t elaborate to prevent spoilers. Still, the general consensus was that those gripes were few and they left the screening happy.

As it stands, I will have to wait until Friday to see for myself. Still, I am encouraged by what I have seen so far. I have mentioned my thoughts here. It is good to hear that the fans of the books are excited and driven to see more. I look forward to hearing non-book fans reactions and reviews. Will this be the catalyst to bring in my family and friends into the world that will allow me to have deep discussions about the series with them? I hope so.

This bonus content available on Amazon Prime through its XRAY service looks awesome and should provide more details about the world for newcomers.

The only other thing I would have to add is the fact that I have yet to hear any WoT swears in any of the materials. Nor have I heard anybody comment as to whether it was present. For those who don’t know what I mean by that, I am referring to phrases like “blood and bloody ashes,” “Peace,” Light burn me,” and many others that are found in the book. I am really hoping that they keep those phrases and don’t resort to the f-bombs and the like used all too often in our world.

All in all, I am excited. I anxiously await this show and hope that it lives up to my expectations. I believe that it will.

Look below for many links I have compiled that cover the premiere, as well as links to trailers and previews that will give a good understanding of the world we are about to step into for hopefully years to come. It’s not comprehensive, I am sure I missed a lot of good links, and many more will likely come up in a few days, but they should be a good starting point.

Links

Kickoff

There’s a Trippy Wheel of Time Billboard in Piccadilly Circus! 😱 – YouTube – Amazon on Prime UK

BEFORE The Wheel of Time Red Carpet Premiere! Chatting Live from London! – YouTube – The Dusty Wheel

Unboxing The Wheel of Time swag bag from Amazon Prime Video – YouTube – Dragonmount

Red (Blue) Carpet

LIVE at The Wheel of Time World Premiere Red Carpet! – YouTube – The Dusty Wheel

The Wheel of Time London Red Carpet Premiere – YouTube – Dragonmount

The Wheel Of Time red carpet premier! – YouTube – Daniel Greene

HeyUGuys Premiere Cast Interviews – HeyUGuys

Rosamund Pike brings “The Wheel of Time” to TV – YouTube – Sharjah News

Reactions

The Wheel of Time (Ep. 1 & 2) REACTION – YouTube – Daniel Greene

Episode 1 and 2 Non-Spoiler Review – Wheel of Time – YouTube – Nae’blis

My Spoiler Free Reactions to Episodes 1 and 2 of The Wheel of Time! – YouTube – Unraveling the Pattern

Trailers

Amazon’s The Wheel of Time – Official Teaser Trailer (2021) Rosamund Pike – YouTube

The Wheel of Time – Official Season 1 Trailer (2021) Rosamund Pike, Daniel Henney – YouTube

The Wheel Of Time Trailer – Nynaeve and Egwene – 9th November 2021 – YouTube

The Wheel Of Time _ The Dragon Reborn Trailer (2021) – YouTube

The Wheel Of Time Trailer – Wolfbrother – 10th November 2021 – YouTube

The Wheel Of Time – Shadowspawn | Prime Video – YouTube

The Wheel Of Time – Logain | Prime Video – YouTube

The Wheel of Time – Origins | Coming to Amazon Prime Video on November 19th – YouTube

Previews

The Wheel of Time: Exclusive Trailer Breakdown with Showrunner Rafe Judkins – IGN First – YouTube

The Wheel of Time: Who Are Moiraine and Rand? – IGN First – YouTube

The Wheel of Time: Bringing the Story to Life From Book to Screen – IGN First – YouTube

The Wheel of Time: The Dragon and Dark One Explained – IGN First – YouTube

The Wheel of Time: Aes Sedai Explained – IGN First – YouTube

Daniel Henney Describes the Magic of “The Wheel of Time” Series – YouTube – Character Media

Thoughts on the Upcoming Amazon Prime show The Wheel of Time.

With Amazon’s The Wheel of Time looming so close, I analyze and share my thoughts as they stand before it premieres to the world.

As of the time I am writing this, the cast members of Amazon Prime’s The Wheel of Time as well as some key members of the fan community have begun arriving in London. Soon, they will be hobnobbing on the red carpet for the premiere of the first two episodes of the show. And just a few days later, the rest of us will be settling in around our TVs, computers, tablets, phones, and other devices and clicking that little right-pointing triangle button as we begin to take in the show that many of us have waited a long time to behold. The feeling is mind-numbing. A mix of excitement and trepidation overwhelms us as we wait for that day to come.

Red Carpet Premiere Banner with attendants
Red Carpet Premiere Banner with attendants

Over the past few weeks, there have been an onslaught of drops and releases in preparing for this moment from the show’s marketing team. It has been a lot to take in and sort through. Trailers, BTS clips, snippets, and more have all given us little glimpses at the show and what to expect. Us fans have been like the crowds outside of the chocolate factory, peering through the gates and wondering at what marvels can be found within. The marketing blitz has given us a fair taste, but like a spoiled child, we want more!

And yet it is not without a bit of hesitation as we sort through the material and info. Afterall, many of us have been embroiled in the series for a long time. For myself, I have been reading since 2007. After a brief break, I returned to it in 2008 and have been a fan since. Of course, many have been a fan much longer than me… since its inception in 1990. Because of that, we have grown attached to the characters and events and are cringing at some of the changes unfolding with the marketing releases. So, without further ado, I break down my feelings, thoughts, and analysis of what we have seen so far.

**SPOILER NOTE (This post may cover some spoilers from the books (mostly minor) and from the show (potentially major). Please proceed with caution or come back after watching the show first before reading.**

Overall, I have enjoyed the trailers and everything that I have seen. The familiar aspects have got me excited to see them on screen and the new parts (whether they are additions or changes) have me intrigued. To me, most of the cast looks wonderful in their roles. While some have complained that it is too colorful, I love the vibrancy and how the colors just pop. It makes the darker parts even more impactful through the contrast.

The Hall of the Tower with Aes Sedai from various Ajahs.
The Hall of the Tower with Aes Sedai from various Ajahs.

Another complaint that I have heard a lot was that everybody looks too clean. As if the characters, especially the villagers, should be covered in mud and feces. I think people are (one) thinking that this show is set in medieval times and (two) that because of that, they were dirty all of the time. As I have learned from watching YouTubers such as Shadiversity and Metatron, that simply was not true of people of those periods. Besides, the point is moot as the setting would be more the equivalent of an early renaissance period. Not to mention that the society was actually quite advanced in the prior age.

Watching the trailers and other materials, it is clear that there are a number of changes from the books. I’m not going to say that changes “should be expected or “are a must.” That has already been said a million times by many others covering the show. While I do agree to a certain extent, I also disagree. Regardless how I feel, most of the changes that I have seen, either from the released materials or from possible leaks, don’t really bother me. I can accept their reason for the changes and be excited for what is to come. Some changes I even love. Judging from the trailer, the White Cloaks are going to be more of a threat in the show where they were more of just an annoyance in the books. I am interested in seeing how they play out.

White Cloaks on the March
White Cloaks on the March

While I can accept most of the changes, there are a few that have my hackles up. One such change is to that of the Waygate. I must admit… I’m not a big fan. I’ll have to see how it plays out in the final show, and it is something I will just have to live with. Another change has to do with a leak that has been out for a while that looks more and more to be true. This is where the spoiler warning really comes in. If you don’t want to be spoiled, skip the next paragraph.

[Spoiler] It has been alluded to that the character of Perrin is married as the show begins and his wife dies during the attack on Winternight. Some claims even state that he is the one that kills her. I don’t think I like this change (if it is true). For one, if he is the one that kills her, what would be the reason? Does she turn out to be a dark friend? That just wouldn’t make sense to me. Was it accidental while he was fighting Trollocs? Either way, he would be dealing with some major trauma that the Perrin of the books did not have to deal with. The psychological repercussions alone would have major impact on his character development. [/Spoiler]

Whatever, the case, I suppose if it is true, it is something else I will have to live with. By and large, I am happy and excited over most of what I have seen. Once I have seen the episodes, maybe I’ll have a different perspective.

But that does bring me to the reactions from the public. So far, the countless trailer reactions both from established fans and newbies alike have been positive. That is a good thing. But as the show starts to unfold and delves deeper into the series, how will those reactions carry through? Will they remain the same or will they begin to dwindle? These are slight worries that only time will tell.

Moiraine looking regal at the White Tower
Moiraine looking regal at the White Tower

This week is going to be a rush of emotions. Within the next 48 hours we will start getting reactions from those at the premiere in London as well as those that were lucky enough to score tickets to the Monday night premiers in select cities across the United States and elsewhere. Unfortunately, I was not one of them. By the time I signed up at the closest to me (Silver Spring, MD), it was already filled up. I’ll just have to wait a few more days with everybody else.

In the end, my trepidations and worries are few. I am mostly content with what I have seen so far and excited to see it play out. I know there is MUCH more that we haven’t seen yet. I even inquired about a tweet that the show guru, Sarah Nakamura, tweeted out back fore the age of madness where she teased us about what she was looking at. She replied that she still couldn’t answer that question and to come back in a few weeks.

In any case, the clock is ticking. This weekend, I half expect social media to be abuzz as people swarm it with thoughts and impressions of the show. I plan on being one of those. Shortly after watching the first three episodes, I will publish a general review and reaction of all three episodes (mostly spoiler-free). Then by the end of the weekend, I plan on having much more thorough (and spoiler-filled) analysis of each episode. It’s going to be a wild ride from here to December.

Links

Shadiversity – YouTube

Metatron – YouTube

My Newborn / The Wheel of Time / My Book Status

It’s been a while… here is an update on what’s going on with me.

Life has been busy. It has been over a month since my last post. Since then, I have been spending time with my family (especially my newborn and older daughter), working on getting my novella ready for publishing, and being overwhelmed with excitement for the upcoming The Wheel of Time TV series, as well as the Ghostbusters: Afterlife movie premiering the same day. So, without further ado, let’s dive into it…

MY NEWBORN

My youngest daughter Sophia Marie

It has been a little over a month since my second daughter was born, and we brought her home from the NICU. While it is a wonderful event, I have to say… It has been an adjustment. Afterall, it has been 6 years since the last time we had a newborn in the house. She has been adjusting well, despite developing a little cold a couple weeks ago. Her sister, Savannah, adores her. Still, it has clearly been an adjustment for her as well dealing with a crying baby all the time. We have been doing our best to check in on her feelings and to ensure her that we love her too, despite all the attention baby Sophia is getting. That has been the greatest challenge, perhaps. But I feel that things should be settling down by the holidays as Sophia begins to get more control and moves out of the newborn stage.

My daughters… Savannah and Sophia

THE WHEEL OF TIME

Another excitement that has been sweeping over me. The onslaught of marketing for Amazon’s The Wheel of Time has been making me giddy. The trailers, clips, posters, spotlights, and more that has been pouring out is a constant reminder that the days are ticking closer until the release. When news that they were hosting premiers on the 15th in select theaters around the states, I took a shot at the closest to me… Silver Spring, MD. Alas, I was too late as the registry was already filled by the time I got signed in (about a half hour after the announcement).

So, I suppose Monday evening, I will be following Dragonmount, The Dusty Wheel, Daniel Greene, and the other lucky content creators who are heading to London for the world premiere. Still, with just more than a week away until the official release, I will be checking in as soon as I am able to. I do plan to do a review of sorts here on my blog. I haven’t decided whether I will do one entry per episode (there are three episodes dropping on the 19th) or react to all of them. Whatever the case, I will likely record my thoughts after each episode and before starting the next one. Maybe I’ll do a spoiler-free look at all three with a spoiler free deep dive into each episode (perhaps released a day or so later).

Red Carpet Coverage for The Wheel of Time Premiere

Also, look for a review of Ghostbusters: Afterlife that weekend too. I am planning on taking my daughter on Friday. I have been very excited to see this movie and I am hyped by the reception that it has already received. I also feel that it might help Savannah feel a bit special to have a daddy/daughter date after she gets out of school that day.

MY BOOK STATUS

And finally, the status of my book is that it is coming along. It has been in a “beta-read” status since I completed the first draft at the end of August. I have made several revisions already thanks to the feedback that I have received from several beta readers including Glenda C, Robbie Seal, Robert Young, Norma Garcia, and Shannon Casey. They have provided a lot of great feedback regarding the grammar, structure, and content of the book. I have also been pleased by the responses, so far, to the story itself.

I was planning on ending the beta stage at the end of October. However, I am extending it as I go through the story for continuity. I have been working these past couple of weeks (and I am still in the process) of extracting information from the book for my worldbuilding “bible.” For this, I am utilizing several programs and outlets, including MS Excel (for quick lists), Campfire Write (formerly Campfire Blaze), and World Anvil. I am also looking into a couple other tools. Look for reviews on how these tools work for me as I hope to do a worldbuilder feature blog soon.

Other aspects of the book are still a work in progress. I have reached out to an artist for the cover art, though I know she has a lot on her plate at this time. Also, the business aspect of founding a publishing company is in the works and I hope to have the foundations laid out by sometime in January. With all of that, I anticipate (and plan for) officially releasing my novella in early Spring. Look for more details of it after the New Year. I would like to do a cover reveal, preorder, and at least a sample chapter.

It has been a busy month and the months ahead are loaded with trials and challenges. But I look forward to them all. Happy Veterans Day to all my fellow veterans.

Links

Watch The Wheel Of Time – Season 1 | Prime Video (amazon.com)

News – Dragonmount.com

The Dusty Wheel – YouTube

Daniel Greene – YouTube

Ghostbusters: Afterlife | Official Website | Sony Pictures

BetaBooks: Reader management software for authors. | BetaBooks

Campfire – Tell Your Story (campfirewriting.com)

World Anvil Worldbuilding tools & RPG Campaign Manager | World Anvil

EXCITING NEWS: New Arrivals and Progress Update

While I’ve been working hard at getting my book ready for publishing, an exciting event occurred… the arrival of my second daughter.

The last few weeks have been busy. At the end of August, I finished writing the first draft of my novella. That is exciting enough as it is, but more on that later. The biggest news is what happened over this past weekend. My second daughter was born.

Announcement

Yes, that’s right. On October 2nd, just before midnight, Sophia Marie, was born via C-section birth. She measured at 21 ¾ in length and weighed in at 8 lbs. even. She was a little early, with her mother only being about 37 and a half weeks into her pregnancy. The past few days have been surreal, and I have barely gotten any sleep. Mother and baby are doing well, despite Sophia having to stay in the NICU.

The Birthing Story

Her mom, Lexy, had been having Braxton-Hicks contractions for a few weeks now. She had mentioned that it wasn’t painful, but there was just a lot of pressure that would go away. On Saturday, however, she was complaining that she was having pains. I had just got home from my work and was helping. Lexy’s mom and sister was coming down and they were planning on spending the day together. By noontime, her mother had arrived, and I was heading to bed to get some sleep as I had to go to work that night.
           

At about 5, I woke up when they returned to the house. I went out to use the bathroom and Lexy was complaining that the pain had gotten worse… much worse. So I got myself ready and took her to the hospital. We went in and they processed her and got her into a triage room while I parked the van. When I caught up, they had her hooked up to the monitors for the contractions and the baby’s heartbeat. An exam showed that her cervix was still closed and that she was NOT in labor. The pains, however, were taking a toll on Lexy.

Lexy was about to surrender. If she wasn’t in labor, she wanted to go home. Finally, a doctor came in and began asking her questions. Of particular interest was her blood pressure, which was elevated. Of course, the elevation could be attributed to the pains, but they decided that it was enough of a reason to go ahead and take her early for the C-section birth.

We were excited. We began making calls to family and informing them what was happening. It was reported that my daughter, Savannah, began crying when she heard that her sister was arriving soon. The doctors and nurses came in to prep Lexy. Finally, they had me gown up, took us to the delivery room and had me wait in the hall while they gave her the final preparations.

While standing in the hall, I could hear Lexy scream as they gave her the spinal tap anesthesia. After an excruciating wait, they finally called me into the delivery room. I sat by her arm, camera at the ready, as they started their work. I could see them working this scissors and clamps as they operated. I didn’t have a direct view, but it was enough. The anticipation was high for both me and Lexy. She kept asking me what was going on. After an unknown amount of time past, I watched the table get flooded as they broke the amniotic sac and released the fluid. Then, they began to pull my daughter free.

It was unreal… I was watching her leave her mother’s body. Almost immediately after getting her out, she began crying. They held her up and I was able to snap a picture. They then took her over to the warming table while the doctors began closing Lexy up. They cleaned her up and suctioned her out, hooking her up to the monitors attached to the table. They called me over and I welcomed Sophia to the world. When they offered me the opportunity to cut the cord, I took it immediately. I didn’t get that chance with my first daughter. With little sleep and the rush of excitement, I was on cloud 9.

Worries

I was then taken to recovery and Lexy soon followed once they finished stitching her up. They brought Sophia in briefly for us to see, but they had to take her up to the NICU as her Oxygen Saturation was not at good levels. They took her up and said that I would be able to go up there in about an hour. Being that I hadn’t eaten anything besides a sandwich 12 hours before, I went out on a quest for food. The café was closed at this time, so I had to settle on Cheese-its and a soda from the vending machine.

After my snack, I went up to visit my daughter in the NICU. She was all clean and sleeping well. This was the first of many visits over the next few days. I bounced around during those days between the NICU, Post-Partum with her mom, and home with our first daughter. Taking her to school in the morning and picking her up in the afternoon. I look forward to their official introduction.

I was running on little sleep. I gave my family and friends updates as I could, video chatting some while in the NICU with Sophia. Lexy was finally able to come up and visit her later Sunday afternoon. As Lexy recovered from her surgery, I spent the most time in the NICU, changing her diapers, feeding her, holding her, singing to her, and even reading to her.

On Monday, the took her off the oxygen and we were so excited. Unfortunately, when Lexy and I went up to see her, they had to put Sophia back on the oxygen as her desaturation levels were dipping. This was a blow to my excitement and had me upset. Everybody kept assuring me that it was fine and common. But I felt so powerless. I just wanted her with us. So that night, after a visit home and spending some time with Savannah, I returned and stayed most of the night in the NICU. Thanks to my father and Lexy’s sister, Ashley, for aiding me with Savannah.

Tuesday faired much better as they took her off oxygen at 11 am and she was now holding strong. Despite my worries, I cherish the bonding time that I had with Sophia during her stay there. I continued my visits, changing and feeding her. Her mom was even able to get up there a few more times and take her turns. We dressed her in some of the outfits we brought along (the doctors and nurses got a kick out of her “Storm Pooper” onesie). Steadily, she has been improving.

Homecoming

Lexy was released on Wednesday afternoon, and we went home. Sophia must be off oxygen for 48 hours before they will release her. The nurse suggested that we come home, get some rest, and do last minute preps at home for her homecoming. That’s what we did. Now, as of the time that I am writing this, we are preparing for her release today. The nurses and doctors have been pleased with all her other checks (just a bit of jaundice is the only other issue) and she is on track for being released by this afternoon.

Other News

Book Progress

In other news, the progress on my book is going well. Thanks to BetaBooks.co, I have been receiving great feedback. Many helpful grammar corrections, insights, and reactions. If anybody would like to assist, let me know.

The Road Ahead

I plan on stopping the beta read phase at the end of this month then moving forward with the process. The next steps after that would be to find an editor (if I even decide to go that route at this time, the beta reads have been helpful and I am considering skipping that step this time… we will see), work on starting my publishing company, and maybe secure an audio narrator (or two… hint, hint Michael Kramer and Kate Reading). I have already commissioned the cover art from a very talented artist.

It has been an exciting week and the next few months look to be even more exciting. With a new baby in the house AND a new book in the works, I have a lot to look forward to. Many thanks to those who have supported me with both Sophia and the book. A special thanks to Lexy for all that you went through. The payoff is well worth it. I love you and look forward to spending our time together, watching our daughters grow.

Links

Regarding the above video, the book I was reading to Sophia is called Spiders in my House by A. M. Horst. I know her better as my sister. It is a lovely children’s book focused on counting and the theme is perfect for this time of year. Check it out if you get a chance:

Spiders in My House (1): Horst, Angela: 9781543974980: Amazon.com: Books

My First Draft is Complete…

I have finished the first draft of my novella and I am ready to move onto the next step. That is proving a little more difficult than anticipated…

On the morning of August 31st, I wrote the last word in my manuscript. Final word count came to 27,800 words. It has been a great feeling. Since then, I have been researching how to go about my next step in getting it published. That step is recruiting beta readers and distributing the manuscript to them. It’s not a straight forward process and leaving me at a bit of a stalemate.

Unfortunately, it is not as simple as asking several random people to read it and give me the feedback. Through my research, it is suggested not to use people that are close to you as they might not provide the best feedback. That is understandable, though I do have a couple people in mind that I do trust to have a critical eye and to give honest feedback (my brother, for example… especially when it comes to grammar).

That said, I intend to find about 5 to 10 beta readers (plus a few select ones… like my brother). For those that I do not know, there comes another issue. Security! While I want to give people the benefit of the doubt, I have been burned before and have seen others burned as well. Giving a complete stranger (or even an internet acquaintance) my manuscript comes with risks.

I saw on a reddit thread where an author asked about NDA’s for their beta readers. They were immediately attacked for being egotistical and made fun of with comments that their work was not “good enough” to be stolen. Only one comment was helpful to the author’s inquiry before the thread was locked to commenting. I personally believe that anybody, no matter their product, has the right to have their work protected. I have certainly considered this method myself. I am not saying that my work is the next best thing, but I still want to protect it before putting it out there.

Along similar lines, another consideration is the process of distributing the manuscript to potential beta readers. Should I print out manuscripts and mail it out (the word document… at double spaced 12-pt Times New Roman… is at 91 pages) to potential readers physically? Or would some sort of online distribution method be better? If the latter, how can I ensure that only the people that I want to have access can see it?

Well, that is where I am at currently. If anybody has any recommendations or solutions that I can pursuit, I would be greatly appreciative. Hopefully, by the end of the week, I will be able to move on with this step. My goal is to have all feedback from beta readers by the end of October. Then I can do my revisions make my manuscript ready to send to an editor. I would like to be at that step by the end of the year. Ultimately, my goal is to publish the book in the spring.

Feel free to comment with any suggestions that you may have. I look forward to it. This is quite a learning process… and a journey.

The Wheel of Time Trailer

The 1st trailer Amazon Prime’s The Wheel of Time has been released and I am over the moon! Having watched it numerous times, here is my take on what was shown…

I was supposed to write a blog entry a couple days ago. That entry was to be about the fact that I finished writing the first draft of my novella. The last couple of days, however, my brain has been in a bit of a “reboot.” Now that it is getting back to a “ready status,” I must hold off on that entry as something big has dropped that I need to talk about. Yes, Amazon Prime has dropped (what they call) the teaser trailer for their The Wheel of Time adaptation.

For anybody who has been following my blog, I have been anxiously awaiting this first glimpse of the show. Having started my journey in this series back in 2007, it has been a long wait. For many who have been following from the beginning, it has been about 30 years since the first book was published. After watching many other fantasy adaptations come to life (for good or for ill), this trailer is the stamp of reality that it is happening. As an expecting father, I can relate it to the third trimester sonogram when the feeling actually hits that this is happening, and it is happening soon!

Diving into the trailer…. It opens with the characters of Egwene (Madeleine Madden and Nynaeve (Zoë Robins) standing on a cliff before Egwene is shoved off into the water below. From there, we hear Rosamund Pike (who plays the Aes Sedai, Moiraine) begins reciting the first line from the opening paragraph of the book as the trailer goes on showing shots of various characters, scenes, effects, and other surprises. From glimpses of the trio of Rand (Josha Stradowski – First name pronounced ‘yo-sha’), Perrin (Marcus Rutherford), and Mat (Barney Harris) to the epic Lan (Daniel Henney) kicking shadowspawn butt, every cut, every scene had me glued. I’m not going to recap the whole trailer, that would take a while. I was certainly pulled into the trailer as it carried on, trying to take in every scene and every word.

I watched it many times already. I have reveled with other fans on social media including Facebook groups and #TwitterOfTime. Needless to say (but I will anyway), I am excited! My reactions were of awe and wonderment as my eyes searched out every detail. By and large, I think it is safe to say that (initial reactions at least) the majority of the fanbase is as over the moon as I am. There have been a few that have been nitpicking some details like some of the CGI effects and the rich color palette used (I, for one, love the color palette). But overall, I am satisfied, and November 19th can’t get here soon enough.

Shortly after the trailer posted, Showrunner Rafe Judkins and Rosamund Pike took to social media to answer questions. It was wonderful to see Rosamund join in the Q&A festivities. When asked what part in the trailer are they most excited for us to see in full, Rafe answered “Winternight” and Rosamund answered Shadar Logoth. In another question, Rosamund answered what drew her to the role of Moiraine. Her answer was that it was how the women “harness the elements of the universe to unleash incredible power. For more of the Q&A you can check out this thread on twitter here: Rafe/Rosamund Q&A

While the pair answered many questions regarding the show, there were a few questions that I know that did not answer. Of course, they weren’t going to answer any questions that gave anything away. The question that I submitted appears to have been glossed over (even though I know I wasn’t the only one to ask it). That question is regarding the unique “profanity” used in the books. For those that don’t know, these are expletives that are commonly used throughout the series by characters much like our own swear words. Things like “blood and ashes,” “flaming,” fish guts,” and “mother’s milk in a cup!” They add a certain character to the series, and I worry that the show will be lacking these terms.

What else has me worried is regarding the plot. It was clear from the trailer that many scenes have been changed from the source material. It has long been expected that there would be changes from the books. There are certainly scenes in the trailer (like the opening scene with Egwene and Nynaeve) that were added to the show. Perhaps the most concerning aspect is how this will affect the story going forward? Many elements from later seasons could be greatly affected by the events changed for the first season. Because of that, epic moments from the books could very well be cut, and that is a great concern. However, I am refraining from judging too much until I see season one for myself. Until then, I will trust in Rafe Judkins, book consultant Sarah Nakamura, their team and crew, and the blessings of Harriet McDougal (Robert Jordan’s widow) and the rest of team Jordan who were consulted.

Regardless, the trailer has certainly whetted my appetite for the series. It is, perhaps, the second biggest thing I am looking forward to this year (after the birth of my daughter Sophia a month before its premier). The more I see it, the more I love the colors of the different Aes Sedai (pr. eyes said-eye – the female magic users of the world) ajahs (pr. ah-jah) the different sects of said Aes Sedai).

The long wait is almost over. It is a sure bet that in a couple of months, my eyes will be feasting upon every beam of light emitted as this series plays out on my TV screen. With trollocs and half-men aplenty, battles and magical weaves galore (sorry, I couldn’t resist it) … I am ready to take on another turning of the wheel.

For further reviews, reactions, and info, check out the links below. Just beware… there may be spoilers!

LINKS

(1631) The Wheel Of Time – Official Teaser Trailer | Prime Video – YouTube

The Wheel Of Time on Twitter: “Rosamund Pike and @RafeJudkins answer your questions about #TheWheelOfTime!” / Twitter

Daniel Greene – Wheel Of Time Trailer Breakdown! – YouTube

The Dusty Wheel – Wheel of Time Trailer LIVE COVERAGE! #TrailerGaidon – YouTube

WOT UP – Wheel of Time Trailer Breakdown! – YouTube

Back on the Writing Train

I am finally back on track with my book. Updates on my progress and status.

Well, finally, after a long period sitting on a half-written manuscript, I am finally back on track with writing my book. I started writing it over two years ago. Originally, it was a short story that I submitted for a class assignment. Then I decided to expand it and turn it into a novella. Early last year, when I started my job, I put it on the back burner and have struggled getting back the creativity to return. I have finally reached that place and am chugging along.

When I wrote the short story that became my current project, I had little time to write it. We were given the assignment and I drew the lot of only having two weeks to complete it. The assignment was to write a Utopian (or Dystopian) Horror and thus, I knocked out “The Monsters Within” in the allotted time (extended by a snow delay by a couple days). I plan on expanding further on this in a Forward to the novella. In the end, I was surprised by what I was able to come up with and was even complemented during the peer-review on my world-building and story given such a short timeframe.

Months later, when I published my story “The Hedge Maze”, another story that I wrote for a class assignment (a different class, though), I knew that I needed something more if I wanted to get my writing career going. I was satisfied with The Hedge Maze, but being a short story, it is hard to market it by itself. I needed something that I could publish in print. I didn’t have enough short stories for an anthology, and I was intrigued by my short story “The Hedge Maze” and wanted to expand it. So, I set out doing just that.

For a while, I was on a role. I used an old program I had, called “Dramatica Pro,” to help fill in the story. I wrote an outline that went beyond what I had already written to try and further world build and make room for greater character arcs. I then began writing the novel. Then life got in the way. I started a job which left me little time for me to work on my writing. I had to shelve it for the time being. I picked up again, briefly, after the holidays of 2019 while I was transitioning to a different job. But that job, too, made things difficult.

That job was working as a Patient Transport at a local hospital. Little did I realize what was coming shortly after I started. Working at a hospital during the pandemic was stressful. My creativity took a hit. It didn’t help that my fiancée caught the thing. That was a scary time. At that time, we still knew nothing about the virus and what it would mean. Fortunately, she recovered, and we trudged through the pandemic. But I was off track.

Part of the reason for starting this blog was to help me with getting my “writing edge” back. I hazard to say that it has been working. It has ignited my creativity as I think of topics to write. And other projects have come along which has added to the fire. That said, last week I began the work of rewriting my novella. I took what I already wrote and started rewriting it, reworking bits here and there as I go along. I am nearly caught up to the point I left off at when I originally wrote it. Incidentally, much of the second half is already written as well, being a big chunk of the original short story. So, while I am still working on my first draft, I already have revisions in progress.

That said, my goal is to have it completed and ready for Beta Reading by the time my second daughter is born. She is due in the middle of October. I will begin at that time (if not earlier) to recruit beta readers. If all goes well, I should be ready to find an editor by the winter. During that later winter, I will set up my publishing house and work on the cover art (I have somebody in mind, already). That should mean I’m ready to hit the presses by spring. It seems a long way away, but I am optimistic that I can hold to the schedule. And having a new baby should help the later months go by in a breeze.

So, what does that mean for this blog? Well, I suspect that I may be a bit silent for the next couple of months, at least. I may pop in from time to time (like when the trailer for the Wheel of Time TV show… or other shows I am looking forward to… drops). But, barring any derailments, I intend to focus most of my writing on my novella. After I finish the main draft, I may begin work on my next writing project, hopefully a full-fledged fantasy novel. I have several in mind, but we will have to see how things go to see which direction I go.

Other projects on my list have been moved to the back burner for the time being. Unfortunately, my regular work schedule has not been compatible with the Amazing Tales with my daughter. I would like to get more into that again, but only time will tell when that will be feasible. The game that I was working on for my daughter in RPG Maker is also on hold. While I made a lot of progress, it has been an overwhelming experience. I am weighing out my options with it. Should I try to enlist help? If I do, I certainly want to make it a marketable product. I like the story I outlined for it and would like to see it through. Any interests in helping (artists, musicians, programmers, designers… amateur or professional alike) feel free to reach out. I would like to resume it soon. It may be my next project after my book is complete. Who knows, maybe a collaboration on the game could lead to another game collaboration of grander proportions.

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Whatever the case, I am excited for the possibilities. It is time for this phoenix to rise from the ashes.