Dragonmount and The Wheel of Time

I’ve been a regular (paid!) columnist for The Wheel of Time fan site, Dragonmount, since 2020. As the site’s crew works through a surge of renewed interest in Robert Jordan’s epic fantasy series in the days leading up to Amazon Prime Video’s TV adaptation (November 19!), I’m expanding my duties to join Dragonmount’s podcast series.

This is so exciting for me. For three decades I’ve delighted in writing and talking about The Wheel of Time, and now I get to do it under the sponsorship of Tor Books and our wonderful supporters on Patreon.

On the eve of the Amazon Prime Video show premier, I want to re-surface my first columns of “Rajiv’s Threads In the Pattern” for folks new to the series–books or television. (These will continue to be catalogued in the “Non-Fiction” section of my Published page.)

Amazon Prime Video Commentary/Reviews

“Review of ‘Blood Calls Blood’ (S1E5)”

Nonfiction, 1,500 words, December 2021. Episode 5 of Amazon Prime Video’s The Wheel of Time detours from the main plot to tell the sad tale of Stepin the Warder. SPOILERS for the show through episode 5.

“Rajiv’s Threads In the Pattern: A Turning of the Wheel” 

Nonfiction, 1,300 words, November 2021. The Amazon Prime Video adaptation of The Wheel of Time is an interpretation, not a translation of the books. And that’s exciting. SPOILERS for the book and the show trailers.

“Rajiv’s Threads In the Pattern: Teaser Trailer Analysis” 

Nonfiction, 1,900 words, September 2021. The teaser trailer for Amazon Prime’s adaptation of The Wheel of Time is full of hints about what has changed from the books. (SPOILERS for The Eye of the World.)

“Rajiv’s Threads In the Pattern: Homecoming”

Nonfiction, 950 words, March 2022. For J.R.R. Tolkien, “home” is the beginning, end, and the stakes. But Robert Jordan agrees with Thomas Wolfe: you can never go home again.

“Rajiv’s Threads In the Pattern: Out Of a Gleeman’s Tale” 

Nonfiction, 2,300 words, July 2021. The Wheel of Time is metafiction: a story about stories, a story that’s aware it is a story. And that lets it take the levers and gears of storytelling and expose them as elements of the fictional universe, turning the destiny of plot into a kind of dharma for its characters.

“Rajiv’s Threads In the Pattern: The Apocryphal Epic of Bao the Wyld” 

Nonfiction, 1,300 words, April 2021. Demandred–where he was and what he was up to–was one of the biggest, most consequential mysteries in The Wheel of Time. But somewhere between Lord of Chaos and Winter’s Heart, Robert Jordan changed the truth behind the mystery. In the deleted sequence “River of Souls,” Brandon Sanderson provides a look into the world-building to support the new revelation, and why it all couldn’t be included in A Memory of Light. (SPOILERS for all things Demandred.)

“Rajiv’s Threads In the Pattern: Wanda and the Wheel” 

Nonfiction, 1,700 words, March 2021. “Comparing WandaVision to The Wheel of Time suggests the ingredients for fandom-level engagement: Hang a lampshade on the mysteries, use each installment to recontextualize the previous, create a story world rich enough for scholarship, and pause between installments to invite fans into the storytelling. (SPOILERS for The Wheel of Time and very minor spoilers for WandaVision.)”

“Rajiv’s Threads In the Pattern: A Different Dance” 

Nonfiction, 1,600 words, January 2021. “Fantasy readers may think they know the steps to Rand’s and Egwene’s dance, but the Wheel weaves them a different fate, as the opposing forces that together weave the Pattern.”

“Rajiv’s Threads In the Pattern: The Dad Also Rises” 

Nonfiction, 1,200 words, November 2020. “Conventional genre wisdom says that for the son to rise, the father must fall. But The Wheel of Time has other plans. Rajiv Moté explores how Tam al’Thor was a dad with more to do than set his son on the path. He had an arc to complete that began long before he and his son saw a dark rider in the Westwood.”

“Rajiv’s Threads In the Pattern: The Chosen One’s Legacy” 

Nonfiction, 1,900 words, September 2020. “These days, it’s not enough for the Chosen One to defeat the Dark Lord and claim the throne. Our hero must leave the world a better place. Rajiv Moté explores how Rand al’Thor left a legacy for the Fourth Age in The Wheel of Time. “

“Rajiv’s Threads In the Pattern: Unaffiliated Evils” 

Nonfiction, 1,900 words, August 2020. “The Dark One is the source of evil in The Wheel of Time, and his army of monsters is formidable. Hulking man/beast soldiers, eyeless swordsmen, soul-sucking bat-men, unnoticeable assassins, evil hounds, Power-resistant gumbies, giant worms, and the giant insects they become. But the scariest monsters in the saga are creatures without a direct link to the Dark One, unaffiliated evils who haunt the corners of the Pattern, with nefarious purposes beyond the battle between the Dark One and the Dragon. Let’s look at five of them.”

“Rajiv’s Threads In the Pattern: Prologues and Epilogues” 

Nonfiction, 1,000 words, August 2020. “I love prologues and epilogues. They let authors–and their readers–play at the edges of the story. They bridge the installments, expand the world, or just provide more emotional build-up and release. The early-release Wheel of Time prologues, beginning with ‘Snow’ from Winter’s Heart, were like trailers for long-awaited movies. The epilogues of comic books–and the post-credits scenes of the movies comic books inspire–suggest possibilities sometimes more exciting than the stories themselves. ‘The Grey Havens’ in The Lord of the Rings taught grade-school-age me the notion of beautiful melancholy.”

Book and Chapter Summaries

Lord of Chaos (Robert Jordan’s The Wheel of TimeBook and Chapter Summaries

Nonfiction resource. Book and chapter summaries for the sixth book of Robert Jordan’s the Wheel of Time. Dragonmount has assembled summaries as a resource for new fans before the release of Amazon Prime’s television adaptation.

New Spring (Robert Jordan’s The Wheel of TimeBook and Chapter Summaries

Nonfiction resource. Book and chapter summaries for the prequel book to Robert Jordan’s The Wheel of Time. Dragonmount has assembled summaries as a resource for new fans before the release of Amazon Prime’s television adaptation.

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