Moshe mentioned to me that we’re going to have to do a book after the MISTBORN series that doesn’t have such a gloomy setting. First, I had ELANTRIS, with the city full of dark sludge. Now I’ve got MISTBORN, with the entire world full of black ash.
The coincidence wasn’t intentional. Remember, for me, there were seven books in-between ELANTRIS and MISTBORN. Most of those had far more cheerful settings. However, this story–which is based around a world where the Dark Lord won–kind of required a depressing atmosphere.
Dockson, by the way, got his nickname before his real name. I wanted to call a character Dox, for some odd reason. The name just came into my head and stuck. And, I figured that this book would be one where everyone would have nicknames, so I started playing around with Dox until I got Dockson to be the main name.
Of course, because of that, I established that ‘son’ could end names. Therefore, we get other names in this linguistic paradigm–such Ferson in the second book, or Franson in book three. (Both of those names came from friends of mine.)
This introductory scene, where Dox and Kell meet on the city wall, has just the right feel for me. I wanted this book–particularly at the beginning–to have the feel of a heist movie. Something like Ocean’s Eleven, Sneakers, or Mission: Impossible. I thought a couple of senior thieves getting together on the wall and talking about the team they are gathering would fit in just perfectly.
That was, by the way, one of the major inspirations for this book. I’ve mentioned that I stole the concepts for Allomancy and Vin’s character from other books I wrote. The plot came from a desire to write something that had the feel of a heist movie. I haven’t ever seen that done in a fantasy novel–a plot where a team of specialists get together and then try to pull off a very difficult task.
Joshua, by the way, also pushed for an action scene here–where Kelsier grabs the Inquisitor’s attention and runs. I do take most of Joshua’s suggestions. In fact, his desire to have an action scene earlier in this book is the biggest bit of advice by him I can think of that I haven’t taken. I just really felt that I needed more time to ease into Allomancy before I could do justice to an action scene. Actually, I think a fast scene like that would actually slow the book down, since I’d have to spend so much time explaining. Better to let the next few scenes play out, where we get some good explanations in dialogue.