Sufficiently Advanced Sequel – First Draft Completed

A couple quick updates!

The first draft of the sequel to Sufficiently Advanced Magic is completed.

This draft is 214,500 words, which is just a smidgen shorter than the final version of SAM (which is 218,000). This could get longer or shorter based on beta reader feedback, but I suspect it’ll stay somewhere in the same range.

I’d expected this to be a much shorter book, which is part of why it took a bit longer than I expected. For the future, I’m just going to plan around all my sequels being this same length.

The current working title is Wish Upon a Scar, but I’m still debating if I’ll go with that as the final title or not.

I’m currently doing a little bit of self-editing. After that’s done, I plan to send out copies to beta readers on Sunday. I’ll be giving my beta readers a few weeks to read it and send me notes, then it’ll be off to my professional editor.

I’m still aiming for a release in paperback and Kindle formats in March or April. At this point, I’m guessing it’ll be late March, but it really depends on how many notes I get from beta readers and the editor.


For those of you who are curious about my writing pace and process:

The writing on this took me roughly 10 months (from approximately March of last year to now). I did some other writing during that time frame as well – about 20,000 words on Defying Destiny, and a little less than that on a Keras spin-off (tentatively titled Six Sacred Swords) and a LitRPG.

I also wrote a short story for the Art of War anthology, which is out next month. I strongly recommend checking it out – it has some other great writers involved, and the proceeds go to Doctors Without Borders.

All in all, I probably wrote about 280,000 words between March and now, which puts me at just under 1,000 words a day (assuming writing seven days a week). That’s not a terribly fast pace if you look at it in terms of daily word count, but the actual writing output is good enough that it would translate to about three “standard” length novels.

I also have a tendency to accelerate toward the end of a project. Of those roughly 280,000 words, I wrote about 70,000 of them during December. This was partially because I was close to finishing the book, and partially because I shut myself off from all my outside distractions.

I also wrote quite a bit for non-novel projects, which slowed my pace a bit in ways that are harder to quantify.

For example, I’ve written about 30,000 words for a rules set for a War of Broken Mirrors tabletop game, and a greater amount for an Arcane Ascension LARP rules set. The LARP is harder to quantify, because a lot of it is updating rules and lore documents that I’d already written, but I’d ballpark the range at somewhere around 100,000 words of work on it.

So, that’s basically another novel worth of work. Maybe more, if I’m being honest. I consider that time worthwhile, though, and not only because it’s fun. Working on the tabletop and LARP rules helps me flesh out my settings and systems further.

For example, working on the games gave me the chance to flesh out all the foreign attunements, make the runes for each of the levels of each attunement in advance, and write up a formal timeline of events for everything that happens in between the War of Broken Mirrors and Arcane Ascension books.

That’s just a small fraction of it – it’s basically another novel or two that’s entirely world and system building. And I make use of that in the books. Not every game mechanic translates into novel format, of course, but things like schools of magic, major historical events, factions and organizations, and that sort of thing absolutely do.


Stabby Award Update:

I won the Stabby Award for Best Self-Published Author. It still feels surreal.

This is my first writing award, and it means a great deal to me.

There were numerous times when I was collecting rejection letters from agents and publishers with my earlier books that I considered quitting. I pushed through that sadness and self-doubt, but it wasn’t easy.

Sufficiently Advanced Magic is the eighth book that I’ve written. The first five were never published. It’s taken a lot of work to get to this point.

But it’s been worth it.

Thank you to everyone who has supported me, either through voting, just reading my books, or giving me words of support over the years. I’m extremely grateful.

I’m hoping to make the next book even better.

90 thoughts on “Sufficiently Advanced Sequel – First Draft Completed

  1. Man you are awesome! Congratulations on the award, you defiantly earned it. I hope that you are getting all the encouragement you need to keep this up. I love your work and am eagerly waiting all of your upcoming books.

    Ps. Table top game??? Can you give any info on this?

    1. Thank you, I appreciate it!

      The tabletop game is pretty crunchy on the numbers side of things and built for a lot of character customization. One of my players compared the gameplay to Final Fantasy Tactics, and I think that’s pretty appropriate. It’s too soon to give out a lot of details, but I’ll probably try to flesh it out and release it in some form eventually.

  2. Congrats!! Well deserved 🙂 Loved all your books thus far and eagerly anticipating this sequel

    First question: how does one become a beta reader??
    Second question: 5 unpublished books?…plan to release them? It would be great to read some of your earlier work!

    1. Normally, my beta readers are people I’ve talked to extensively about my books in the past – either personal friends, or just people who have pinged me on Reddit or that sort of thing.

      I’m not planning to add more beta readers for this particular book, but if you’re interested in beta reading for the next one, ping me directly sometime when it’s close to being finished. You can contact me on facebook or e-mail me at

  3. Congrats on the Stabby! I can’t wait to get a my hands on your next work. Wish upon a scar sounds like a pretty cool name to me for a title. Do you have any other beta names for the book?

      1. Have you ever considered “the fault in our scars”? Borderline plagiarism, yes. But such a good play on words.

    1. That’s an awesome title, but I think directly referencing the title of another book might be overkill. I’m thinking more in terms of finding quotes that are well-known, but not already used as the titles for other works.

      Since my first book references Clarke’s Third Law, I’ve considered referencing one of his other laws, or something similar (e.g. Sanderson’s Laws). I’d also like it to be something that feels “magical” in nature, which is why “Wish Upon a Scar” came to mind.

      I like Wish Upon a Scar in concept, and it’s story appropriate, but it’s a little dark. I’m not sure if I want the ideas it evokes to be the emphasis of the story.

  4. That’s good news, Andrew! Your writing is amazing. Please take the time and make it as wordy as possible like in SAM; I can’t get enough of your world/magic/tech building!!! Looking forward to the book and audiobook, will buy both!

  5. I really like Sufficiently Advance Magic. I voted for you in the stabby awards. I just want to thank you for an escape from my normal life, into a world that you have created. I wish you much success in the future.

    1. Thanks so much for voting for me, as well as the general support! I’m very glad you enjoyed the book, and I hope you end up liking the sequel when it comes out. =)

  6. I love your books! My middle school student is a huge fan too. He’s chosen “Sufficiently Advanced Magic” to do our companion book project on. He is looking for your biography to write his first chapter on. Can you direct me to some resources for his research? Thank you in advance!

    1. Thank you so much! I’m glad you’ve been able to enjoy the book with your son.

      I don’t have any sort of formal biography out there, I’m afraid.

      Here are a few resources to look at:

      I have a very brief author bio here –

      I have a brief explanation of how I got into being a writer here –

      Here are some notes about my career in bullet format:

      * While I was in college, I got my first writing contract working by answering an open writing call from White Wolf. I submitted example monsters for one of their books (Strange Lands: Lost Tribes of the Scarred Lands), and two of my entries were accepted. This got me in touch with some of their editors, and helped me find more freelance writing work.
      * I spent much of my free time in college playing Dark Age of Camelot, a Massively Multiplier Online Game (MMORPG) by a company called Mythic. I gained enough notoriety as a leader in that community that I was invited to join the company’s Team Lead program, which was essentially a volunteer version of the “Community Manager” positions at most online game companies today.
      * As a result of being a part of Mythic’s Team Lead program, I was invited to attend the Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) with a free badge. When I attended, I was encouraged to apply for a job at Blizzard.
      * I graduated from the University of California, Santa Barbara in 2004.
      * Around then, I began working with White Wolf on World of Warcraft: The Role-Playing Game, a tabletop version of the MMORPG. I ended up contributing to several of their books over the years.
      * I applied to a few positions at Blizzard over the next year. I was turned down when applying for Game Design positions due to a lack of prior professional experience in the field, but eventually was hired for a position in the Quality Assurance Department.
      * I worked at Blizzard from 2005 to 2009 in Quality Assurance, while also doing some writing for them in my free time, and occasionally still contributing to the World of Warcraft tabletop game.
      * Frustrated by my inability to move into a permanent writing position at Blizzard, I left the company in 2009 to try to write full time. This was a mistake; I hadn’t actually published any full length novels yet, and I overestimated my ability to sell books. I moved back into the gaming industry, this time at Cryptic Studios, about two years later.
      * I continued to write on weekends and during evenings when I had free time while working full time. In total, I wrote six books before I actually published one.
      * I published my first novel, Forging Divinity, in 2015. It was successful by self-published book standards, but still nowhere near enough to make a living on.
      * I published the sequel to that, Stealing Sorcery, in 2016. It had better ratings, but far fewer sales. I largely attribute this to the fact that I had no way of informing the readers of the first book that my second book was out, since I did not have a mailing list, and my books didn’t list my blog’s URL.
      * Podium Publishing acquired the rights to my audio books for that series, which helped improve my sales. Notably, Stealing Sorcery did much better in that format, most likely because the books were released almost back to back and people were able to go straight from reading one book to preordering the next.
      * Last year, I released Sufficiently Advanced Magic, the first book of a new series. That was *much* more successful, and finally allowed me to pursue my dream of writing full time.

      I hope this helps!


  7. How does one become a beta reader, if such a thing is possible? If possible, can i be one? I just want to get the book as fast as possible.

    1. I’m not planning to add more beta readers for this one, but when I’m close to finishing the next book, you can e-mail me or message me here. I may post sign ups at some point, I’m just not planning to add more people for this book.

      Thanks for the interest!

  8. So I have to say you book was a random audible purchase because I was out of material. Normally when that happens and something doesn’t jump out at me I just relisten to the wheel of time or other series of sufficient length to get me a month or three down the road to allow new books to come out. Sufficiently Advanced Magic was an audible suggestion that I took because of good ratings and book duration. I prefer books, real and virtual, with some heft. I must say I enjoyed your tomb with enough passion I had to check for a sequel immediately.

    After reading your update page I felt compelled to write and express my appreciation for your creativity and expressive vision. Your words have been a joy to consume. I shall “read” your next work but beyond financial support it was important to also lend my gratitude for sticking to your craft despite less than industry open arms. You’re a positive example to all the aspiring writers and creative souls out here in perception. Gz Sir.

    1. I’m glad you picked the book out at random and still ended up enjoying it! I’m really glad it managed to maintain your interest.

      Thank you for the kind words, and I hope you end up enjoying the sequels!

      1. Have you read Will Wight’s Cradle books? If not, I’d recommend those.

        Aside from that, I’m currently reading and enjoying Steven Kelliher’s Valley of Embers, and I just finished (and loved) Red Sister by Mark Lawrence.

  9. I absolutely loved Arcane Ascension, it is my absolute favourite book (with Ready Player One in close second) When I read it I couldn’t put it down. Can’t wait for further books (especially that Keras spinoff that’s going to be exciting)
    all in all I love your work and keep writing.

    1. Hi there,

      I just sent out the copies to my beta readers yesterday.

      I’m giving them one month, making those edits, then giving my editor about a month. Then I’ll have to make the changes from my editor.

      That should put me right around the end of March or the beginning of April for the release.

      1. Nice! I usually stockpile a couple of good books for my usual May long weekend vacation, but I doubt that I can hold off on reading your next book. Perhaps the audio book will be out for the summer.

  10. Thank you very much for these books! I’m really enjoying them. I found Sufficiently Advanced Magic first so I started there and devoured Forging Divinity and now getting close to finishing Stealing Sorcery! Congratulations on the award it’s well deserved.

    Please let me know if that tabletop game becomes available to the public and keep up the great work!

    1. Glad you’ve enjoyed the books, and thank you for the support!

      I’ll definitely post when I get the tabletop to a point where it’s ready for distribution to the public.

  11. Do you have any more recent news to share? I always make a point to swing by your blog at least once a week to look for new posts.

    1. Thanks for checking in!

      I’m continuing the editing process. I’ve gotten the first set of feedback from some of my beta readers, and I’m doing a bunch of editing.

      The general reception has been pretty good so far, but people have been asking me to elaborate on some things, especially adding more to the beginning of the story and expanding the epilogue.

      I’m spending some time updating my outline for Defying Destiny and working on planning for my next few books, but I haven’t done much more actual writing. I’m hoping to get back to writing in a couple weeks when I’ve finished the beta reader edits and I’ve sent the book off to my professional editor.

  12. Do you have any ETA on book 2 in audio format? I very rarely get the chance to read, but I listen to audiobooks all the time. I’m almost done with book 1 and I cant wait to hear more!

    1. The audio is going to take at least a few months after the paperback/kindle versions are finished, unfortunately. My best guess is that it will be at least July or August. It’s mostly a matter of the narrator needing to find enough time in their schedule to record it.

  13. Re reading the first book it looks like attunements from other Spires may also use different forms of Mana. I think that I have seen mention of water and motion mana, for instance. I really wonder what Corin’s new attunement is? I wonder if he will be able to get training in how to use it at his present school? I also think that there may be more of the higher level people around than the general public realizes. I wonder if he will manage to pick up another attunement when they climb a Spire to heal his half sister. I think that would be pretty rare, particularly for someone so young and inexperienced. I am looking forward to you explaining about the attunements from the the other Spires.

    It will be interesting to learn why his brother never left the Tower after being Judged 5 years earlier.

    1. You are correct that there are more mana types in the other spires!

      Corin learning about his new attunement and figuring out how to use it is a major part of the second book.

      You’ll definitely learn more about his brother’s situation as well. =)

  14. I know I am a new poster on this site, but I would like to suggest a small impromptu contest, what mana types do you think Corin’s new attunement, on his right hand, use? Before we see the answer in the new book. (I am not a Beta reader). (It is up to the author if there is any prize for the best guess).

    My personal guess is that one of the mana types will be one that is not used by the 8 attunements from the Serpent Spire in Valia. Obviously, since it came from Katashi, the Visage of Dalenos, it is probably one of their (Dalenos) normal 8 attunements (unless it is something really special beyond those). I am guessing WATER mana. My second guess is EARTH mana, this would give Corin an attunement that was the exact opposite of the Elementalist attunement with it’s special ability of Lightning which is usually considered the most potent offensive spell casting attunement (to quote the material from the 1st book). So it could give them some defense against Lightning spells. It also gives their party access to some mana types that it does not have at the moment. I suspect that the Earth and Water combination might have the ability to cause large openings in the ground and probably close them as well, which ought to be very useful in future visits to Towers(Spires). A good combat attunement might help make Corin’s father more accepting of him and his ablities, particularly if one of them is Earth, which is part of his father’s attunement. If Corin can pick up Earth and Enhancement from other attunements, now or in the future, then he will able come close to the Shaper attunement father has.

    I think that an Earth Water combination sounds like an interesting combination, plus the ability to defend against lightning sounds very useful.

    If I had to take a 3rd or alternative choice, I would go for Enhancement, instead of the Earth , which should go well with his Enchanter attunement. Enhancement and Mental (from Enchanter) would give Corin Diviner abilities (which would be very useful to him and the party), as well some overlap with Guardian and Shaper. If he ever picks up Air, then he would be close to a Summoner in abilities, but since Sera already has that I am expecting something different.

    It will be interesting to see how Corin tells/explains to his parents what has been happening, and that his brother is still alive. I doubt that he will tell them about the Book, because then they would probably try to take it from him. It will be interesting when they (and others) learn about Sera getting Katashi’s Sword, as well as the likely expedition to Caelford to climb the Spire there to get healing for her.

    I wonder when Corin will try drinking what is left of the attunement water in his water bottle. He really ought to do it under peaceful and calm conditions, instead of during an emergency like his sister did. That will give him time to adjust to any changes without risking what happened to his sister.

    I notice that the Author never explained what mana types went into a Soul Blade, which was mentioned several times in the Book. Corin should Not have gotten Soul Blade since Derek already has it and will recognize it if Corin got it. If Mental is one of the two manas, Corin might be able to get that ability someday.

    I think that getting Enhancement and Life when he climbs the Spire in Caelford would be very useful for Corin, and if he had Water and Earth already would make him VERY dangerous because of the match with Mender abilities, plus give them some needed healing abilities for their party. Plus,of course, the match with Shaper as well. Of course, he may get some mana type(s) not available from the first two spires (Motion and ?)

    1. Good hypothesis! I’ll think about running a contest at some point. Not sure if I’ll do one for this particular book, but seeing people theory craft would be cool.

      Thanks for the interest and the idea!

  15. Fire and Air are the two mana types I expect least for him to get now or in the near future, because others in his party already have them.

  16. Considering that Valia has Fire, Air, and Earth I think that Water has to be another mana type. In fact, I think that it was mentioned more than once in the first book. I suspect that it is in the water of attunement. It also ought to be part of one of the other Healing attunements that the other Spires have, i.e. Life and Water. We were told that there were other Healing attunements but they did not use Earth and so were not able to Heal broken bones which only the Valian Mender could do since it has Earth. So I think that Life and Water is probably one of the other Healing Attunements, from the other Spires.

    I think that Corin’s real development will be along non combat paths, but those paths will still have uses in combat. As he grows stronger and acquires more abilities, I can see him getting abilities in several general areas: information/sensing (Divination related), healing related, and maybe teleportation/transportation related.The junior members of his party already have the three of the combat related attunements from Valia, Elementalist, Guardian, and Summoner. If he does pick up any combat abilities I think that he would want to follow in his father’s path, i.e. Shaper (Earth and Enhancement). Enhancement would go well with his Enchanter abilities, and Earth would also go well with Healing, so I would not be surprised to see him get Earth and Enhancement at some point. As mentioned above Enhancement would also get him Diviner. His party really needs to acquire some Healing related abilities, and think that Corin would be the most obvious for it, but maybe another one of them as well. I think that Derek and Keras are probably not going to change (add) much in the way of new abilities, but we do not know much about their existing abilities.

    I think we saw mention of motion as a mana type, which could (probably) have a connection to teleportation.

    If Corin got two types of Mana that were not available in Valia’s basic attunements, I would expect Water and Motion, since we already know they exist. Teleportation on a battle field (while climbing a Spire) could be very devastating and could also be very useful in solving problems in the various rooms when climbing a Spire/Tower. Water will be very useful in solving Room traps as well. Corin might not be a combat specialist but he will be very useful in solving Room traps and problems.

    What I would really like to see him get would be Water, Earth, and Motion but that is being greedy, i.e. expecting too much at one time.

    I doubt that we have seen the last of Jin. Since his family were retainers of House Dalen from Dalenos, even though he was born/raised in East Edria, it will be interesting to see how he interacts with Katashi in some future book(s). Katashi will probably cause some changes in what Jin was supporting and doing, perhaps major changes.

    I do wonder if the Valia School could train Corin in either Water or Motion. If they can, they are probably very small classes. Losing Professor Lyras Orden will probably cause the School some problems in teaching some classes, as well as her being supervisor of Serpent Division which had the Shadow and Diviner students. Losing the Serpent Division supervisor will probably cause some significant changes in the school administration.

    An interesting question about their party would be Shadow related attunements. It needs to be someone besides Corwin, to keep him from being too powerful, which would ruin the balance needed in story telling.

  17. If Jin has left the School, who will take his place in the team that has been tested together already twice (the second test got interrupted)?

  18. One last comment (I hope) I would not be surprised if a single person can not have several attunements that use opposite types of mana, i.e. like Fire versus Water, Earth versus Air, etc. I also doubt that a single attunement can use opposite mana types.

    Also do all Mana types have an opposite or only some of them? or do attunements have opposites? (probably not for attunements would be my guess, it is enough for some mana types to have opposites).

    1. Good hypothesis on that as well.

      All of the “basic” mana types (earth, air, fire, water, etc.) have opposites.

      Some things that are referred to as mana types (like “grey mana”) aren’t actually a single type of mana, and thus may not have opposites.

  19. I just finished the SAM audiobook. I loved it and am excited for the next.

    I had been looking for something to fill the void after I finished Name of the Wind and Wise Man’s Fear. Now I’m just as excited to learn more about Corin!

  20. I think that the most obvious replacement for Jin in their school party of 5 students would be Roland Royce, who may be Sera’s retainer, just like Patrick is Corin’s retainer.

    However, if Roland, Patrick and Marissa all come along with Corin and Sera on the tower climbing expedition to try to heal Sera, that will only leave room for one of Derek and Keras in a party of six. Which probably means Derek. Keras is too powerful and obviously not from the local countries to be in their party. He will probably be following his own path, that may overlap with theirs at times, outside the Tower/Spires.

  21. I am not sure that we were told what attunement Roland has. I think that it had to be one of the attunements that would sign up for the dueling class. Since we already know about 3 of them in other party members, I wonder if he might have Shaper.

  22. But if Roland is the 5th student in the revised school party, plus Derek, that only gives them one support type person and 5 fighters now that Jin is gone. I think that they need at least another person in their party for some of the support functions. There are just too many support roles/functions they need for one person, Corin, to fill. Hopefully, as they gain more skills and experience, some of those roles will be filled by some of the fighters. Those support roles are needed in solving traps and puzzles in some of the Tower Rooms. They need more than just fighters.

    There are more mana types and attunements that I would like to see Corin acquire than I think he will be able to acquire: Life, Enhancement, Umbra, Movement, as well as the basic Earth and Water, as well as others we do know of yet. So while I would like to see him get both Earth and Water, I wonder if he may only get one, probably Earth, which he needs for Divination and Healing (Mender). I think that he definitely needs to acquire teleportation abilities, which I assume will come with Motion. If he gets Earth and Enhancement from additional attunements, he will have skills close to those of a Shaper, i.e. his Father and family’s traditional attunement. I do not expect him to get Shaper directly. We do not know how Water interacts with Mental, Transference, or Enhancement to form possible attunements (and skills/spells). We can guess that Life and Water is a Healing attunement, similiar to Mender. I think Enhancement would be very helpful with his Transference skills, and think that he is more likely to get (at some point) Enhancement than Earth. So can he get both Earth and Water (?), we will have to wait and see.

  23. I first read book 1 shortly after it came out, but I have been rereading it recently, while waiting for book 2. I see now (or have been reminded) that more than 2 attunements for one person is extremely rare. So what Corin got for his 2nd attunement is very important. I still think, that if he ends up meeting several Visages or doing favors for them, like rescuing Tenjin, that he may end up with a 3rd attunement, or have his existing attunements expanded to include more types of Mana. His party needs more of the support attunements, so we will have to see what they get in the future. I suspect that Corin is probably the only member of his first year class (except possibly for foreign transfer students) to currently have 2 attunements, but Sera’s greatly expanded attunement is also unique in their class.

      1. If no one has told you, you are the absolute best!!!!

        Super happy that you are taking the time to make a book that you feel happy and comfortable with 🙂

  24. I have been trying to look more at Corin’s new attunement (one of Glory, which means it may not be one of Dalenos’s standard 8 attunements).

    The center line might be Life. I would still like to see him get Water and the bottom part might be Water. I would like to see him get Earth which in combination with Water would give a strong combat ability (I think) but it does not look like the Mender which is Life and Earth or like Shaper which also has Earth. So I suspect that Earth is out along with Air and Fire.

    I think that Corin needs to acquire some divination related abilities and we do not know what the Seer (from Dalenos) attunement looks like or what manas it includes. Is there a mana for Vision (or Sight)? Motion has also been mentioned as a Mana and Professor Order has the Wayfarer attunement from Dalenos which might include Motion. Motion also might be found(acquired) in Caelford, when they get there to heal Sera. (I consider this to be more likely than him getting it from Katashi)

    So I am leaning towards his new attunement being Life, Water, and possibly Vision (Seer related) or Motion (Wayfarer related). If his attunement is one of “Glory” it just might include more than two manas, maybe 3 or even 4 if each line is for a different mana, since each line is separate and does not touch any other line. Most of the attunements we know of have all of the lines connected to each other.

    Life and Water would give him and their party some Healing abilities, and Healers using their abilities in a negative way are supposed to be deadly close range fighters, so that could give him some combat abilities, along with the possibilities from Water to go along with Ice from his Sword. I do wonder if Corin will pick up enhancement at some point, but I do not think he has it yet.

    My guess about Cecily Lambert is Corin’s romantic attachment, but his person to person social skills are so poor that he is not ready to pursue it, so he avoids her and possibly vice versa.

    Meanwhile, Sera’s modified/amplified attunement has so many lines that I am wondering if it is an Emerald or Citrine level attunement. But it will take a while to get her healed and to grow her mana levels to match it.

    I find it interesting that even though Derek is a schoolmate of Corin’s brother (and thus only 5 years older), he is already a 3 times champion and an Emerald Sword Master (Soul Blade). So apparently it is possible to reach Emerald status pretty quickly after graduating from the School, which takes 2 years (of those 5 years).

    I am really waiting to see how Corin’s Father (and Mother) reacts to his new attunement, what happened to Sera (including Katashi’s SWORD), and the other things that have happened to them (including his brother being alive). Is Corin going to have the time to take all of the new classes he will need to learn how to use his new attunement? (I expect a lot of private tutoring).

  25. Great theory crafting here.

    You’ll find out more about a lot of those topics in the second book.

    One thing that I don’t consider a spoiler is that Derek got his attunement at a younger age. He went to Dalenos and got his attunement there, where the age requirement is lower. That’s part of why he’s as powerful as he is for his age – but he’s still exceptional.

  26. While I would like to see Corin get enhancement at some point, it may make him too powerful because of so many attunements from Valia use it (4 out of 8), so combined with manas from other attunements if might give too many combat related attunements (Guardian and Shaper, as well as Divination and Mender). I think you are trying to make Corin a non direct combat specialist, and enhancement might make him into a strong direct combat person. This is one of the reasons that I doubt that he will get Fire and Air also. (Air would make him a Summoner). I suspect that having transference and enhancement might be one of those very rare to maybe impossible combinations of multiple attunements, just like I suspect Fire and Water is not allowed (except by near godlike beings).

    We may also find that an attunement that combines two manas directly such as an Elementalist (Fire and Air) does it better or faster than having two attunements that each have one of them. Perhaps, because they would be coming from or being manipulated by different parts of the body.

    What will be really interesting to see will be how (or in what) he ends up different from his brother.

  27. At a minimum, his brother has some illusion or hiding from your senses abilities from the Umbra mana or Shadow attunement.

  28. Do other Towers have basic attunements which are the exact same combination of manas, or are they always somehow a different combination of manas, e.g. could you get Elementalist or Guardian from different Towers? My impression is that they are different (i.e. unique), but I could be wrong about that.

    1. Every tower has different attunements available, but there are some ways you can get the attunements that correspond to a different tower (like if a visage gives you one directly).

  29. I just noticed (or verified) a contradiction that has confused me in the past about Shaper: in the class lecture page 237 of 624 (on My 10 inch Kindle) it is given as Earth and Transference, while in Appendix 1 page 611 of 624 it given as Earth and Enhancement. I think that the rune combination shown in class is appropriate for Transference and is compatible with other uses of Transference that we have seen rune diagrams for.

    By the way, I am fairly certain that the center part of Corwin’s new attunement is Life. I am guessing/hoping that the bottom part is Water, but you have never shown us any rune combinations that included water. The runes to either side of the Life rune are unknown to us. As indicated in previous messages by me, I am guessing that they are part of Dalenos’s attunements, the only two of which we have heard of (besides Soul Blade) are Seer and Wayfarer (We have already seen Derek’s Soul Blade attunement). So a reasonable guess would something related to what makes either or both Seer and Wayfarer special. The only question in my mind is how many different types of Mana Corwin can get from a Glory mark from Katashi. ( FOUR Manas types would certainly very glorius, and even Three is better than the usual two manas for basic attunements). (It might be the same new type of mana for both Seer and Way Farer, which would make things simpler, i.e. Mental/Distance for Seer and Transference/Distance for Way Farer)(Distance is just a guess on my part for a possible name). (Now that I have thought about it more, I rather like this possibility/idea).

    Corwin certainly needs to get some divination related abilities and Seer would certainly fall into that. Getting some abilities to move around/teleport on the battle field would also be useful to him from Wayfarer.

    Life and water should give him some healing abilities. Life and Mental (from Enchanter) might give him some mind healing abilities or mind influencing abilities. Water should combine with the other manas (that he has) in various ways.

    Motion mana that we have heard of would seem to be a Caelford related mana type, e.g. automobiles and trains.

    So that is my final guess/deduction for Corwin’s Mark of Glory: Life, Water, and something(s) related to Distance.

  30. It is about page 237 0r 238 out of 624. It was when Prof Conway was explaining to the class what the various attunements of Valia were (including rune diagrams). There is a whole paragraph of explanation based on transference mana for Shaper (at least in my Kindle edition of the book). Plus the the diagram looks like other diagrams that use transference (the sort of double sickle shape).

    Will we ever get a look at what his Father’s attunement currently looks like, i.e. with additional lines for being at a higher level ? I am assuming that his father is either a Citrine or Emerald, particularly since his mother is an Emerald Elementalist. Also do his Mother or Father have any additional attunements (I am not expecting an answer now, I hope to see it in the new book) For that matter does Derek have a 2nd attunement? Considering how good he is, I expect that he does.

    1. I found the section and updated the explanation for the next edition.

      Unfortunately, that conversation is a legacy of an older version of the design for the attunement, that I somehow never caught before I finished the book. It’s a legitimate continuity error, but fortunately one that never really comes up within that book (because you barely see the Shaper attunement at work in that book).

      There’s more Shaper content in the next book, and it’s relevant that they use enhancement mana.

      I’ll make an adjustment to the conversation for a second edition of the book. There are a few other things I need to fix that have changed somewhat as the setting and system have evolved. I don’t like retcons, but I have to remind myself that even Tolkien made changes to the Hobbit after he put out Lord of the Rings. =)

  31. Will the rune diagram for Shaper be changed (from what I see in my edition) (or already was changed in your more recent version)? Because the old one seems to be based on transference as it was used several places for rune diagrams that Corin saw and/or used. I am refering to the double sickle near the bottom of the diagram for Shaper, which was also used in a number of other diagrams that used transference.

    I suspect that Roland may be a Shaper, but I think that you never told us what attunement he was in book 1. I also expect that he will be the replacement for Jin in their school test party of 5 students and may take part along with Patrick and Marissa in future Tower climbing expeditions, including Caelford to heal Sera.

    I am really waiting to see what Corin’s Mark of Glory will turn out to be. I think that he will need a lot of private tutoring. Although if he did get Life and Water, and if they are a healing attunement, then at least he will still be in the right division for them, since his division was for Menders (healers) and Enchanters.

    1. The rune is unchanged. The base symbols for Enhancement and Transference are similar because they’re opposite mana types. They’re basically two sides of the same coin, which is why also why they have similar (and sometimes overlapping) functionality.

  32. The two runes on Corin’s Mark on either side of what I think is Life are very similiar to each other but not identical, so as discussed above, I think that they will give him Seer and Way Farer, possibly in combination with his Enchanter (Mental + Transference) abilities, although maybe independent of Enchanter. So I think that Corin should tell his Father, when Katashi (in person) gives someone (Corin) a Mark of Glory, you do NOT turn around and say but I really wanted something else (i.e. combat related), you just say thank you and learn to use what you got. If he is clever enough as an Enchanter, he should find plenty of ways to use them in items for combat anyway.

    I hope that he did get Water, since no one in his party has it and he ought to be able to use it as enchanter. Other members of his party already have Air and Fire, and probably Earth if they pick up a Shaper in Roland, to help Corin when is making items as an Enchanter.

    I wonder if Corin’s brother knows what his new Mark is and what it does? and for that matter Sera’s revised/added to Mark.. I am not certain, but Sera might have had Life added into/onto her Attunement Mark

  33. Also since she (Sera) uses Ice so much in combat, maybe her abilities with Ice got increased. She also used ICE a LOT after she got her attunement changed after drinking Corin’s stored water of attunement.

  34. In that same area of SAM where there was the old discussion of Shaper being wrong (with transference) there was also discussion of various attunements from other Towers. You might want to check to make sure that those discussions match your current/planned ideas for those attunements as well.

  35. Let me (and everyone else reading your blog) know how to get the 2nd (or revised) edition when it comes out. Sometimes it is hard on to get revisions, additions, or later editions when you already have the first edition (I had that problem with one of the Schooled in Magic books, when the author added a postscript to a book after I bought the original Kindle edition).

    Will you put anything in the forward to Book 2 of SAM so the readers know about any changes or corrections to Book 1? Thanks. Not all readers of Book 2 will be reading your Blog to learn about those changes.

    1. More specific reply, sorry.

      I’ll plan to let people know when the 2nd edition comes out and what the changes are.

      That will probably be *after* book 2 comes out, however, so it won’t be explained in the forward unless I *also* update book 2 later. Which I might.

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