Q&As with Christopher: Brom’s Seven Words, Magic Restriction, and the Importance of Back-ups

Matt Gaser, seven words
Christopher regularly answers fan questions about his latest projects and future works on Twitter and in interviews. This month, we’re catching you up on some of the exciting information he’s shared:


Joel J. on Facebook: I am curious, did Roran return to Narda to pay Clovis the money he cheated him out of when trying to get to Teirm on the barges? Just seems a very Roran-type thing to do.

He didn’t return there (too out of the way), but he did ask Nasuada to give Clovis a contract for shipping furs and goods down the coast. In the end, losing those barges was the best thing that ever happened to Clovis.

With the help of the Eldunarí, will Eragon teach Riders the way they were taught before, or differently?

It’ll be fairly close to how they were taught of old, as Eragon has the experience of the Edunarí to draw upon. However, I’m sure he’ll make a few changes of his own.

What were the Seven Words that Brom told Eragon? This is one of the greater mysteries of the series and it was rumored we were supposed to find out in Inheritance.

The seven words are the focus of a short story/novella I’ve been waiting to write.

Was the blind beggar that got her fortune told someone of real unknown importance?

Part of another story.

What was your reason for making Nasuada take on Galbatorix’s reasoning, and worse, even try to get Eragon to implement restricting magic within her realm?

Because the reasoning is right, even if the methods Galbatorix (and perhaps Nasuada) sought to implement are wrong. How would you like to live in a world where anyone you know could be messing with your mind/perception of reality/health/wealth with a few words and a wiggle of their fingers?

I love Valdr’s vision of the sleeping starlings that helped Eragon develop his idea to make Galbatorix understand. But I don’t understand the first part of his vision, “beams of light turning into waves of sand, as well as a disconcerting sense that everything that seemed solid was mostly empty space.” Does it have some deeper meaning?

The image is simply a poetic way of talking about the particle/wave duality of photons as well as the fact that everything is made out of mostly empty space between the atoms.

I’m really curious as to what happened to all of Joed’s ships (mentioned in Eragon)…

Most of Jeod’s ships were destroyed by the Empire (as mentioned in the books). Any that weren’t he would have had to abandon when he fled with Roran and the villagers.

Why didn’t you make Roran a Rider? I thought he would be better fit than Arya.

And then he would outlive Katrina. Not something he’d want, I think. You’re right, though; he’d make an awesome Rider.

Why didn’t Galbatorix have Shruikan’s Eldunarí?

Maybe he did. I didn’t say one way or another, now did I?

After losing his first dragon, why did Galbatorix think the Dragon Rider leaders would be able to force a second dragon to hatch for him? Is that even possible?

The Riders might have been able to convince a dragon to hatch for Galbatorix (very slight might). However, keep in mind, Galbatorix was mad, and for him, that might became a must and a would.


I thought the Eragon series only contains four books, so why is there suddenly a fifth book?

The thing is, even though the cycle is over, the lives of the characters keep going, and that will be true of any book I write. There will always be opportunities for future books/stories. I love the world of Alagaësia, and I don’t think I’ll ever abandon it, no matter how long I live. So yes, there’s a fifth book, and after that there will probably be a sixth, and so on. However, they may not all continue the same storyline that I began in the Inheritance cycle, although we will certainly see some of the same characters.

How far away is Eragon’s new Dragon Rider settlement? Is it too far away for him to return to Alagaësia if needed?

He could always return. The question is, would he? It’s farther away than Vroengard, though. Quite a bit farther away.


Did your computer ever eat your book? I’m very upset as of the moment I’ve spent two days editing my book, and now the edited part is GONE!

Never. First rule of professional writing — BACK EVERYTHING UP! And then BACK IT UP A SECOND TIME! And then back it up a third time and GET IT OUT OF THE HOUSE, in case the house burns down. I’m not joking. This is exactly what I do, every day. And as a result, the most I’ve ever lost is a few sentences.

How does one get inside the mind of a dragon, as a writer?

The trick is to avoid getting inside a dragon’s belly! To understand a dragon, one merely needs to observe a cat or a falcon and imagine what they would be like if they were fifty feet long and could breathe fire.

Do either of you ever feel like the characters are controlling everything, and not you?                

Sometimes. When that happens, I try to get out of my own way, because the characters often end up doing things that I never anticipated, which is good. Over-planning things can be a problem when you plot the story out beforehand.

Fans searching for more may be interested in our Q&A archive, in addition to our comprehensive FAQ page. You can also find Christopher on his official Facebook and Twitter pages.

Mike Macauley

Mike Macauley is the founder of Shurtugal.com, editor in chief of Lytherus.com, and author of The Inheritance Almanac. Mike can be found on Twitter at @mikemacauley.