My sister and I got to Barnes and Noble pretty early and we got some good seats.
She had not read Iron Gold yet, but I finished it the day before.
Pierce spoke about the different POVs in Iron Gold and how his writing had to change. He usually does not outline, but he had to for IG and the next book Dark Age, not just because there is more going on but for pacing and syncing up different POVs that have to match at the same point in time. Otherwise there would be a lot of rewriting.
Something Pierce said that I related too when I write was that sometimes when writers outline they have so much energy and momentum while doing so but then lose it when it comes time to actually write. So sometimes it is better to just go for it.
This part threw me off because I noticed that Pierce changed his answer in another interview. At this event he said Lysander was the hardest to write because he’s so smart, and Lyria was the easiest to write. He thought Lyria would be the hardest.
One thing I really liked was when Pierce said that the readers have different experiences in life and it’s not an author’s duty to tell others how to think but to ask questions.
The Q&A portion with the audience was great. These were some of my favorites:
1)Someone asked what are the other Howlers’ real names. Pierce answered that he will reveal them in due time and it wasn’t an oversight to omit them, just there is a way he wants those details to be presented. He also has to find his notes to remember them. HA!
He also spoke a little bit about the differences in his former editor, Mike Braff and his new editor, Tricia Narwani. Mike had become one of his best friends and Mike’s complements could be counted on one hand. He’d say the pacing was slow and get to the killing. So Pierce would put in an Obsidian to distract him. Mike called Obsidians “Space Vikings.”
This is a funny story: Pierce told Mike that the end of Golden Son had a wedding. When he got to the end Mike was sending him messages in all caps and called him. But he was in his cubical so he had to use his inside voice but was clearly like WTF!?
Tricia was a beta reader before, the first person after Mike to read the drafts, so there is still continuity there. She is more complimentary and helps with the pacing when his world building slows down the story.
He has pages and pages of world building and his editor(s) would tell him it’s great and none of it will be used. I think that right there is a great start for a World of Red Rising Encyclopedia.
2)Another person commented how Lyria was written beautifully and wanted to know if he would ever write a novella from Mustang’s POV – as a mother and Sovereign.
Pierce said, “No comment. Seriously.”
Now I have nothing but speculations about Dark Age!
3) This was my favorite question of the night: When Pierce began writing Morning Star he wasn’t going to write a story about the aftermath, the what happens after the Death Star explodes. Is there any series, TV or book, that Pierce would like a follow up like Iron Gold?
Pierce answered almost all of them because when you are in the Falcon or at Hogwarts you feel like you are at home. You miss your home and you miss your friends.
The problem is…would the additions ruin the initial trilogy? He said it’s his burden/responsibility not to demean actions of the first three books: the original story, personal journeys and sacrifices of the characters.
So then, and this was my favorite part of the night, Pierce used The Last Jedi as an example. Luke’s evolution demeaned him from the the Original Trilogy.
Pierce wants to add on to the same journey with Iron Gold. The story should feel like the same characters and not a restart but an evolution of them as older people.
Sometimes he thinks he wants more but maybe it’s better not to have more. Many series go past their prime. He knows this story is not past its prime because he’s exhilarated to write this trilogy and if it didn’t feel right he wouldn’t write it. He doesn’t want to dilute or make the past consequences feel insignificant so that the fans feel cheap for reading it and then have fans say “that’s not my canon” or “not my Darrow.”
By not taking a big break and going right into this new trilogy he has kept the same tone. And there are new things to explore through the different POVs. We see more of the world and culture, and the cracks in their civilization. So it feels richer, and when we reread the first trilogy we’ll know all this is going on outside Darrow’s POV.
Before the signing portion we concluded the Q&A with a collective howl. People in B&N must have been like, WTF, lol.
Photos and a major spoiler below!