WMF Photo Contest Part IX: Around the World

Heya folks, Amanda here.

[This is Pat. I’m here too, but today, I’m orange.]

Amanda square

As Pat’s mentioned before, I have been helping him sort through all of these photo contest blogs. It’s mind blowing how many photos you guys sent in, so it’s taken kind of a long time.

That said, a lot of the photo contest blogs have been about 97% done for a while. We grouped things into categories together. We sorted them out. We bickered a bit over who the winners and honorable mentions should be. We got photos into the photostreams so blogs wouldn’t have 80 pictures in them.

Pat’s been part of all these steps. He’s been the ultimate decider. And the blogs have been getting posted up. But, y’know, still kinda slowly.

Ultimately, the problem is that Pat’s more than slightly obsessed with getting things perfect. You know this is the case in his books, where he needs everything to be 100%. What you might not realize is this: for him, even posting a blog that’s only 97% feels wrong to him.

[This is true. The pursuit of perfection is kinda like a sickness.]

With his books, this leads to good books. But with blogs… it mostly leads to long delays.

[Yeah. True. Or it leads to me not writing blogs at all, dreading the amount of time they’ll take to finish.]

Here’s the problem. Pat told me that it was my job to make sure we got the photo contest finished.

So the other day, I say to him: “If we don’t get the photo contest finished, we’re not going to be able to fit in the other thing you want to do before the Mid-Season fundraiser at the beginning of June.”

Pat says, “Yeah. I was wondering. How would you feel about finishing up a couple of the blogs yourself? They’re pretty much done already. They just need final spit and polish. And I know I’m slowing down the process at this point.”

“I would love that,” I said.

“I would kinda love that too,” he said.

For reference, I went to double check, and the submissions for the photo contest were all due on May 15, 2011. On Friday, we will have had these photos for four years.

[I hereby declare that we will finish this photo contest by May 15th of this year. Even if it kills us.]

[And by “We” I mean Amanda. And by “us” I mean me. Because Amanda will kill me.]

So yeah. Let’s get this ball rolling, shall we? Don’t worry. I don’t doubt Pat will jump in and give you a bit of his own color commentary here and there.

[Way ahead of you.]

* * *

Today we bring you Part IX of the long delayed photo contest.

Previous parts are here:

[Prologue] [Part I] [Part II] [Part III] [Part IV] [Part V] [Part VI] [Part VII] [Part VIII]

Lots of people surrounded Wise Man’s Fear with other beloved books from their libraries.

Nerd awesome

Or reading other books.


[The glasses are a nice touch here.]


This one features El Contador de Historias as Sim, La Cultura, Todo lo que Hay que Saber as Wil, and WMF as Kvothe, all having at drink at the Eolian.

A surprising number of people had Wise Man’s Fear fighting other books to the death.

PatRothCon Mockup

This was a somewhat common motif in the previous photo contest, too. I’m not sure what makes Pat’s books fight other books so much, but they sure seem to win a lot.

Winner: Epic Struggle

[I just wanted to claim credit for “Epic Struggle.” That’s mine. I came up with that.]

close fight

This one had great attention to detail. The blood spilling out is words. The books have hands, and WMF got wounded in battle, but not enough to prevent its coup de grâce.

This was a reference to Pat’s blog about blurbing Brandon Sanderson’s The Way of Kings, particularly the quote “Sanderson’s books are so good that he’s starting to piss me off.”

Also Winner: Playing With Yourself.

[I’d like to *not* take credit for “Playing With Yourself.” But I have to. Because I came up with it.]

Our other winner, though, really took advantage of Pat’s obsession with Catan:

Catan 6

Their suggested caption:

  • “Teaching the new guy” or “I have wood for sheep.”

They managed to get one of the cool ARC copies of Name of the Wind into the picture, and as a first edition/first printing of NOTW as well.

We’ve got a photostream of all of the other books hanging out with books, if you want to check them out.

Books Around the World.

For the contest, a lot of people took Wise Man’s Fear to cool and exciting places. Fantastic places. Far-off, exotic locales….

And Urbana. Normally Urbana is not considered an exotic locale, but this dedicated fan gave us the entire photo journey of the Travels of Mr. Book.

Anywhere youlike

This was only the first picture, but if you want to see the complete set, you can check out the Travels of Mr. Book over on the photo stream.


Apparently this is a shop for jewelery in Ulm, Germany. The Sparrow is the emblem of Ulm.

[In Ulm, um Ulm, um Ulm herum.]

photo contest heroic looking Karo

This was taken at the Neuschwanstein Castle in Bavaria, which the tourist-board calls the Fairytale-Castle and the person who submitted the photo calls “neo-gothic tastlessness.”

Even so, it made for a sweet photo.

The book made it to some classic spots too, like the Colosseum.

Wise Man's Fear Colesso

Or overlooking the Mediterranean Sea.



[Cool skyline.]

at sea(ttle)

Or Cologne, Germany.


On our recent trip to Germany, I saw this very cathedral. And I think this copy of WMF looks pretty cool with his sunglasses….

[Is that the Cathedral I pointed at and said, “I’ve gotta get me one of those?”]

Yup. I violently rolled my eyes at you.


This fan couldn’t get their hands on a copy of WMF, and so made their own based on bootlegged copies of DVDs and books found in the area.

[I remember I didn’t get this joke at first, but when we followed up with them, they explained that bootlegged DVDs tend to have ridiculously bad cover translations.]

In the intervening years, WMF has been translated into both traditional and simplified Chinese, and they’re both beautiful, for reference.

Other folks just found beautiful or picturesque places to take the book, including places that looked like waystones.

Waystone-s of Carthage

[I think this one might actually *be* an old waystone. As in an old Roman stone that marked a road? Is that something that really existed, or did I just make it up in my head?]

[No. Nope nope nope. I’m not going to look it up. Not going to lose two hours researching it. I’m learning to let go and let some blogs be only 97%…]

Columns of heaven



And on that note…

Winner: Greystones.




These look like perfect waystones to sit and read beneath. Just be wary on night with a full moon…

[Actually *pushes us glasses* it’s the night with no moon that people are supposed to fear.]

Is it okay if we just fix it and I don’t have to snark back at you because I’m actually legitimately embarrassed that I messed that up?

[No. Everyone will bear witness to your shame. That’s what happens when you settle for 97%.]

We have a photostream of all of the other exotic or interesting locales, so take the time to check them out, because there were a lot.

* * *

Congrats to all the winners, and sorry for the nearly-four-year delay.

Subbing in for this blog was really fun, and Pat and I are going to work hard to get all of the rest of the photo contest blogs up this week.

[Do. Or do not. There is no try.]

I’ll probably take over at least one more. Y’know, just to be sure.


[This was a surprising amount of fun for me, too. Make sure to stay tuned to the blog this week, because there’s going to be a new blog pretty much every day.]


This entry was posted in fan coolness, Photo Contest 2011. By Amanda28 Responses


  1. Posted May 11, 2015 at 1:43 AM | Permalink

    The death of Way of Kings picture really reminds me of the ‘autograph war’ I may have started with my two signed books that Past posted a pic of a couple of years back…


  2. Primorph
    Posted May 11, 2015 at 4:01 AM | Permalink

    Aw man, I just broke those glasses.

  3. justajenjen
    Posted May 11, 2015 at 5:36 AM | Permalink

    Ah, Europe and it’s giant impressive churches. One of the things that still gets me since I’ve moved to France. In the town I live in, there are 4 huge churches, one of them Flemish and 2 Gothic, and the other is kind of a mix of different styles from the times it’s been rebuilt. The Flemish church/monestary is across the street from my apartment and I like to walk through the gardens. So pretty.

    If there’s another photo contest, or maybe just because, I’ll take my books on a tour of them. :)

  4. Kayt
    Posted May 11, 2015 at 5:42 AM | Permalink

    Hi Pat,

    Just reassure a fellow perfectionist, waystones (milestones) are indeed a thing, from the Roman Empire and from other periods too. They’re usually mile-markers, showing how far the nearest settlements or major destinations are in miles. You also get other, older types of standing stone that probably served a similar function (marking out roads) but without the distances.

    • Posted May 11, 2015 at 12:57 PM | Permalink

      Thanks for that. I was pretty sure….

  5. crimson_yachiru
    Posted May 11, 2015 at 7:39 AM | Permalink

    *pushes up glasses

    Karma hit you before you got started :p

    • Amanda
      Posted May 11, 2015 at 8:16 AM | Permalink

      Awesome. I feel much better now.

      • Posted May 11, 2015 at 12:58 PM | Permalink

        I call bullshit. I think Amanda added that typo just to spite me.

  6. Amanda
    Posted May 11, 2015 at 8:17 AM | Permalink

    Other benefit to me writing a blog: I get the cool golden author comments now.

    • Posted May 11, 2015 at 12:31 PM | Permalink

      Noooo! My mantle of authority!

      • Amanda
        Posted May 11, 2015 at 1:42 PM | Permalink

        The roles have been reversed! I demand 800 coffees!

  7. christie
    Posted May 11, 2015 at 9:57 AM | Permalink

    Is the existence of waystones now trending?

    There must be others who seek the answer.

  8. Jsherry
    Posted May 11, 2015 at 10:34 AM | Permalink

    As someone who squees at least internally (and sometimes audibly) every time I see a new blog entry here, I have to say that this was a lovely way to mix it up. Pat, I’m not surprised that you had fun with this entry, since it’s always easier to strike a spark in reaction as opposed to in a vacuum (er, metaphorically speaking – I don’t really know is that makes science-y sense).

    You had me at “color commentary.”

  9. ChingTsun
    Posted May 11, 2015 at 11:33 AM | Permalink

    So I Amanda kills Pat, does that mean she will also be finishing book 3?

    • Posted May 11, 2015 at 12:46 PM | Permalink

      Cool. That’s your job now too, Amanda.

      Imma gonna just watch netflix and eat cheetos from now on…

      • khil1
        Posted May 11, 2015 at 1:01 PM | Permalink

        Lets be honest, that was your plan from the start, build up Amanda so that she could do all of your work; so you could just binge netflix and play with Cutie and Oot.

        Smart Rothfuss, very very smart.

      • Amanda
        Posted May 11, 2015 at 1:41 PM | Permalink

        Um… no thank you….

        • Posted May 11, 2015 at 1:42 PM | Permalink

          It’s too late. I called no takebacks.

          • Amanda
            Posted May 11, 2015 at 1:43 PM | Permalink

            Nose goes! *puts finger on nose*

  10. ChristyQ
    Posted May 11, 2015 at 12:43 PM | Permalink

    Wowza, my waystone picture is included. Fun! I had forgotten I submitted one. :)

    So many clever ones. Thanks for this!

  11. Theorist
    Posted May 11, 2015 at 1:20 PM | Permalink

    Just dropping in to say that I really liked the co-authored blog. Very nice reading and the cross-colour exchanges are hilarious.
    Good job Amanda and Pat!
    P.S: Do you know any more funny german wordplays pat?

  12. s.r.r.s
    Posted May 11, 2015 at 4:53 PM | Permalink

    That picture of the Roman milestone… I believe it might be the one from Bordj-Messaoudi in North Africa? I think the inscription reads:


    The lower case letters are reconstructed, and it seems the book was placed to cover this area of the stone, which was probably damaged. The bottom o the stone is also missing, as you can see the words cut off at the bottom. Roman inscriptions are highly abbreviated (one of the key differences between Roman and Greek inscriptions), so expanded into more standard Latin, this reads: “Imp(eratore) Caesar(e) / G(aius) Messio Qui/nto Decio Tra/jano pio felice Aug(usto)/ p(ontifice) m(aximo) [tribu]/niciae [potest](atis)….” And that essentially means “By Emperor Caesar Gauis Messius Quintus Decius Trajan, blessed pious Augustus, pontifex maximus, of the power of the tribunate…” It probably would have ended (eventually, when it finished with his title and offices) with “fecit” which means “made,” and thus it would be “Made by Emperor Caesar Gauis….”

    This would be Emperor Decius, who ruled from 249 to 251 CE. He was known to build and improve the roads around the empire, including in North Africa, and there are plenty of milestones found attributed to him to suggest this building program.

    You can see the inscription better in Bulletin archéologique du Comité des travaux historiques et scientifiques, Volume 3, p. 537 (available to read the applicable pages via Google Books) — it’s an 1885 source in French, and it already has one error I could see, so not the best ever source.

    I hope this satisfies some of your curiosity!

  13. lykashii
    Posted May 11, 2015 at 7:50 PM | Permalink

    I’m excited but also scared that the 4 year wait is almost over. It’s like I’ve been on this journey, and I read all your blogs and everyone now and then I read: photo contest and out of the blue I’m filled with excitement.
    Also the hope that I may win talent pipes one day will end when the competition does…

    Nevertheless I’m excited for the end of the week to see all these beautiful pictures!

    • Posted May 11, 2015 at 8:09 PM | Permalink

      We’ll be having more contests in the future. So you’ll have more chances there…

      • NAMDORG
        Posted May 11, 2015 at 8:31 PM | Permalink

        I have what I think to be an awesome idea for the next contest. Can’t wait.

  14. PostaKiwi
    Posted May 18, 2015 at 1:42 AM | Permalink

    I didn’t notice that one of my pictures is also here! but so much cool stuff going on in this blog that I missed it :P

  15. Posted May 26, 2015 at 5:15 AM | Permalink

    Are you sure the shot overlooking the Mediterranean is truly mediterranean? It reminds me of a certain atlantic city…

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