Fictional Conflict

Hey there everybody.

So every year or so, there’s a website that organizes what they call a fantasy cage match, wherein they pair a bunch of fictional characters up against each other and make them fight.

It’s a fun concept, very tongue and cheek, and my characters have ended up involved in various ways over the years. I think it was the very first year they did it when Kvothe went up against Aslan. I was so tickled by the idea, that I wrote up how I thought the match would go. (And a couple years later, I posted it up on the blog.)

kvothe_vs__aslan_by_rainforestgoddess-d4v5mgz(And someone liked it enough to do Fanart. Which makes me happy.)

It’s funny. I can remember where I was when I wrote that. I was in a hotel lobby down in… Iowa? I was traveling down to Virginia Beach for a signing, and Sarah and Oot were still sleeping in the hotel room. He was so tiny then. I think he was barely even one year old…

That was a tricky time for me. In some ways, I was in a great place: After more than a decade of work, my book was finally published, and people liked it. I had a beautiful son, a successful book, money in my pocket, and fans who loved my work. I got invited to conventions, and when I did a signing, as many as a hundred people would show up….

But in other ways, things were a real shitshow. I hadn’t finished book two yet, and I was a mess of self-recrimination and guilt about that. I was trying to come to grips with being a professional writer, and adult, a father, and a minor celebrity. Though I didn’t yet know it, my mood disorder was becoming more prominent, and my writing was not going well.

Then I sat down in that hotel lobby and wrote what turned out to be a lovely, fun, sweet little scene between Kvothe and Aslan. It only took two hours, and it came out nice and clean. It was startling how easy it was, because working on book two was excruciating.

Anyway. There’s another cage match going on, and this time it’s Devi in the mix. She made it to round four, where she’s going head-to-head with Tom Bombadil.

The thought of them in a confrontation tickled me, so this Sunday I sat down to write it up.

And as I write this it’s interesting how similar things are right now. Viewed from one angle, my life could not be better. I’ve got a movie and tv deal going. Lin-Manuel Fucking Miranda is involved. I have several successful books out. Translated in 35 languages. Millions of books sold. TWO lovely children….

But I’m a mess. I’m such a mess. And I’m behind on everything. And the writing isn’t going well.

But on Sunday I wrote this thing. And it was fun. And easy. And for the space of about 10 hours I felt really good.

So. Anyway. I’m sharing it with you now with the hope that you’ll enjoy it.

Also, I’d like to note that in writing something like this, I’m not hoping to tip the Scales toward Devi. I’m not trying to rig this voting thing. If you prefer to think of this as a straight-up fight and you think Tom should win, because… well… he’s Eldest and Fatherless. Probably one of the Valar. That’s cool. Vote for him. Vote ten times.

Even if you read my alternate take on events, (no spoilers here) and still decide that Tom would win the alternate competition that ends up getting proposed there. That’s cool. And rather reasonable, too. As Tom still has the home field advantage in that scenario. Great. Vote for him. I’d honestly love to see him go up against Ragnar in the final round.

Anyway. Here’s a link to the write up I did.

I’ll eventually post it up here on the blog just to archive it. Because I never know when some other site will move or change or a link will go dead. It will also be nice to get a chance to edit the piece a little bit, as I wrote it in a single day, and I usually like to tweak and massage my writing a lot more than that. Even if it’s just a little something that I do for fun.

I hope all of you are doing well.


This entry was posted in Uncategorized. By Pat65 Responses


  1. urs
    Posted March 29, 2017 at 7:40 AM | Permalink

    “Vote for him. Vote ten times.” As a Chicagoan, I am an expert in this. ????

    I remember the first signing of yours I went to. It was at Borders and there were maybe a hundred people there. Your dad was there too. I made cookies. It was lovely. The last time I saw you (my fifth time?) there were hundreds of people. It was loud and crowded, fun of course, but vastly different from years ago. I can’t even imagine how crazy that is to live through. I’m sorry the world and life is weighing so heavily on you. Hugs to you, Pat.

  2. chaelek
    Posted March 29, 2017 at 7:40 AM | Permalink

    I’m sorry you feel like things are going poorly right now. If it makes you feel better I just finished WMF for perhaps the fifteenth time, and it has brought me as much joy and comfort it did the first time I read it.

    Your books have buoyed my spirits numerous times. Thank you.

    • Laish
      Posted March 29, 2017 at 2:36 PM | Permalink

      I second you chaelek.

      Thank you everything Pat: for your books, for introducing me to Goodreads and good literature, for introducing me to good games and good people. Just, thank you. Your books saved (and still save me) countless times. I don’t even know you and I hold you dearly in my heart.

      Take all the time you need. Love your wife, read to your kids, rest and heal. I will wait forever for book three and for all the projects I know you have.

  3. crystalhuskey
    Posted March 29, 2017 at 7:48 AM | Permalink

    Of course you’re a mess. Some of us just are. Too much soul in the body. Too much mind in the brain. Obviously that overflows and becomes a mess. Sit by a river and talk to the spirits. Be crazy for a little while. You’ve already done great things. Even if everything falls apart now the greatness will have been done. Trust your future self. Please excuse the stream of consciousness -ness of this comment. I’m a mess too ;) I would suggest creating a five bullet point to-do list right now, finish it, and call it a day. And do it again tomorrow. Good luck.

    • estherholland
      Posted March 29, 2017 at 10:04 AM | Permalink

      I qouted you to my little sis. Who is a mess right now. To much soul for her body. Thanks

    • cageo
      Posted March 29, 2017 at 5:21 PM | Permalink


    • cwcwrites
      Posted March 30, 2017 at 4:51 PM | Permalink

      I think the world needed to hear what you said. Beautiful. Too much mind in the brain indeed. Everyone wonders, in horror, who’s going to clean up the mess they made without wondering if it should be cleaned up at all. Better to leave the mess for a day or two and come back to see it as art.

    • MRK
      Posted April 3, 2017 at 12:59 PM | Permalink

      You just made me tear up. I needed to hear that. Thank you.

    • MalikLucius
      Posted May 6, 2017 at 3:26 AM | Permalink

      You, m’dear, understand things. The world needs more of this- /I/ needed this today. Thank you.

  4. Posted March 29, 2017 at 7:50 AM | Permalink

    Thank you for this delightful story. I am not going to spoil it, but there was one Goldberry line that made me laugh and laugh.

  5. Kthaeh
    Posted March 29, 2017 at 7:58 AM | Permalink

    Sorry to hear things are hard right now, Pat. You have touched thousands of people who would all gladly take a small measure of weight off your shoulders right now if they could.

    I hope the ease and delight of writing the cagematch story carries over into your other work for a while. Gets the juices flowing, lets you see something in a new light, or just takes your mind off thorny problems.

    I have loved all of your cagematch stories for the non-violent twists that you bring to the conflict, your deep appreciation of the characters, and the human (or non-human) decency in all of them. I especially loved this last one, and at this particular moment. As an activist for many causes that are under siege right now, your story was a delightful gift from an ally that came out of the blue. It heartened me in many ways. So thank you – for the story, for the solidarity embodied therein, and for everything.

  6. Bethany
    Posted March 29, 2017 at 8:04 AM | Permalink

    The story is *delightful*. I stalked that page until it was posted. Like Ktaeh, I appreciated the break-from-battle that it gave. Like Erzberger, I giggled… and like you, I searched for fan-art that evening… :D Pat, *know that you are loved.* Complete strangers, who have and never will meet you in person, love you. Love your mind and your creativity. Love you on cranky days and weak days, and strong booming days.

  7. theWotnik
    Posted March 29, 2017 at 8:15 AM | Permalink

    Endlessly amazed by your talents, twists and insights.

    A little chaos now and then is healthy. Ride the waves and let them bring you ashore!

    No true fan of yours will begrudge you the time it takes to create and create well. Everyone is supporting you!

  8. arvy_p
    Posted March 29, 2017 at 8:20 AM | Permalink

    Here and there you keep dropping nuggets about your mental health and mood and so-forth, and my heart reaches out to you. When you have this kind of issue, life can be hard enough, but when working on what feels like building a mountain, and that you have to make it be The Best Mountain Ever…. wow, that’s really a rough time. Find joy with your kids… kids are great for that. Focus on the pebbles instead of the mountain. Find accomplishment in small things. Eventually the small things sum up to bigger things. Take care.

  9. Vpug
    Posted March 29, 2017 at 9:19 AM | Permalink

    I really enjoyed that – thanks for writing it! Good woman Devi :) We’re all rooting for you too. Anything you do is enough.

  10. Black Badger
    Posted March 29, 2017 at 9:30 AM | Permalink

    Damn it all Pat, I was CERTAIN there was no way you could convince me to vote against Tom freakin’ Bombadil, but…

    Seriously man, that was really lovely!

    As for things not going as well as you’d like please know that many, many people in the world love you and want nothing more from you than for you to be happy. We don’t care if you never publish another word or record another stream or build another world. We don’t feel that you owe us anything; we simply enjoy the world more knowing you’re in it, being awesome at being you. I know this probably sounds ridiculous but hearing your frank discussions of the mental challenges you face I know we’re much the same, you and I, and if I can EVER help in any way, please just let me know. My name is Chris, I bring the doughnuts, the Tinker’s Packs guys know how to reach me.

    Much love man, thanks for being you.

  11. justajenjen
    Posted March 29, 2017 at 9:37 AM | Permalink

    Sorry you’re not feeling awesome.

    I’m super happy for you and all your sucesses, because it’s always a wonderful thing when that happens for someone. You’re an inspiration.

    And I still remember when I emailed you to tell you how amazing I thought Name of the Wind was and you actually wrote me back. I was shocked. The only other famous person I ever heard back from when I wrote them was Mr. Rogers, so, there’s that, for what it’s worth. :)

  12. Aoife
    Posted March 29, 2017 at 10:20 AM | Permalink

    Take your own advice, man! (Or Arliden’s advice I guess.) “Songs choose their hour and their own season. When your tune’s tin, there is a reason. The tone of a tune is your heart’s mettle, and there’s no clear water from a muddy well. All you can do is let the silt settle, or you’ll sound sour as a broken bell.”

    Take care of your brain, and your soul. Love your family. Finish some of your (many) projects. Spend your time creating space to write, instead of freaking out about not writing. Write things that bring you joy. (Heck, the last time you did that, we got Auri.) You are a beautiful, creative, and world-changing person. You can’t do it all at once. But you can do it. We believe in you.

  13. kooyla
    Posted March 29, 2017 at 10:43 AM | Permalink

    I feel that way a lot, Pat. Sometimes it’s hard and that’s okay. It won’t always be hard. Life is full of peaks and valleys. You made it through the hard times before and you will again. I have Depression, so I know what you mean, at least a little. <3

  14. Posted March 29, 2017 at 12:16 PM | Permalink

    Everytime I feel like I’m a mess or like I’m not doing good at whatever I do, I remember this episode of Avatar: The Last Airbender in which Zuko is trying to teach Aang the ways of firebending but fails, not being able to firebend himself. This was because the source of his firebending used to be the rage he gathered through the years… against his father, against the Avatar, etc., so they go together in this trip to the sun village or whatever to find the first firebending masters, and they end up learning the old ways and dancing with dragons. My point is: Have you ever thought of yourself writing, how to say it… not for the right reasons? I mean, if you feel that your writing is not going okay despite everything else being good, could this mean that the source of your writing is not a good one? Does it feel more like a burden or a responsability rather than the pleasure of materalizing your craft and making it your tangible soul? As you say, writing these little pieces (which are great, by the way. I’d love to have more available time to draw as many fanarts of them as possible) gave you joy and delight because you were having fun doing them, and that seems to be a totally different source from where to fuel your machine…

    Now, it is not like I know anything about you and how you feel about your work but hey, it might be something worth considering, to question this source-of-power thing.

    I hope you can find yourself comfortable again with what you love doing. You are not a mess, at least no more than the rest of the human beings out there.

    (Sorry for my Tarzan-esque english.)

  15. aatterson33
    Posted March 29, 2017 at 12:24 PM | Permalink

    The mind is a place, and in itself can make a heaven of hell, a hell of heaven..

  16. ValdyrDrengr
    Posted March 29, 2017 at 12:35 PM | Permalink

    Love the picture of Kvothe with Aslan, even if Kvothe does bear a striking resemblance to Nicolas Cage.

    Actually, can we get Nick Cage to play Kvothe the innkeeper? :D

  17. Sternenstaub
    Posted March 29, 2017 at 1:06 PM | Permalink

    You are human, who would have guessed. A blessing can be a curse as well, even at the same time. I liked your fun piece on Devi, even with the very ‘male’ ending. It is fitting. If you are in a dark place, turn to the people who shine bright.I guess you now, who they are. Best wishes

  18. Knaplek
    Posted March 29, 2017 at 3:35 PM | Permalink

    Sorry to hear things are hard with writing – thank you for sharing. I look forward to reading this little story that cheered you up :-)

  19. dorwinrin
    Posted March 29, 2017 at 3:41 PM | Permalink

    I wish I knew the Name of the Soothing to call it on you, Pat. I remember you in Madrid when you were signing for more than 2,000 fans, hours and hours after the store was closed. I got to you at 1:30 am, eight freaking hours signing, and you still had a smile for me and my wife. You became epic that night for everyone of us. Then I started reading your blog, knowing about Worldbuilders and all the incredibly good things you do.
    I wish I could get a plane to hug you and tell you this: You are more than enough the way you are. You’ve done more than enough for everybody around, and you are OK. Whatever you keep on doing, it will still be great.
    My third wish, should I really manage to get that plane and come into hugging distance, is that you have a clear policy of not-using-your-writing-axe-on-strangers-that-come-too-close.

    PS: Devi and Goldberry has been beautiful, thank you for that!

  20. emgray
    Posted March 29, 2017 at 4:10 PM | Permalink

    Just know you have hundreds of fans who have your back. We support you because you’re a person, not just an author! And if it takes awhile for you to come out of the Underthing, just know we are like Kvothe waiting with 3 things and a song *hugs*

  21. Dramlin
    Posted March 29, 2017 at 4:46 PM | Permalink

    This is probably a good time to share how I felt the first time I read Name of the Wind. I was stunned, just completely stunned. I read a lot, no really, a lot, and I don’t think I’ve ever read anything that had such an impact on me — it’s a beyond awesome book.
    My second reaction was this thought:”Well if THIS couldn’t get published I am so screwed”.

  22. Krirbs
    Posted March 29, 2017 at 4:55 PM | Permalink

    Hang in there man. Just do your own thing, keep to yourself :) hope you pull out of your funk

  23. cageo
    Posted March 29, 2017 at 5:19 PM | Permalink

    Hey Pat, sorry to hear that things are not going so well. I hope you are okay.
    That’s a lot of big stuff you’ve got going on, it would probably be overwhelming for a ‘neurotypical’ individual, whoever those lucky bastards are

  24. almost_frederic
    Posted March 29, 2017 at 6:13 PM | Permalink

    I have bipolar disorder and your books have been a great comfort in dark times. Try to remember that your family, your friends, and your fans know the price of your mood disorder and gladly pay it anyway, because you’re just that awesome.

    PS: The match prediction was delicious.

  25. Incarnadine11
    Posted March 29, 2017 at 8:09 PM | Permalink

    I really enjoy the approach you take with the cage match stories. A straight-up fight is not the only way to win in a conflict, and conversations have the potential to be infinitely more interesting than fights. Although it’s always fun to see characters get a chance to show off a bit!

    I also wanted to leave the URL of the Felurian vs Death match from 2015. I’m sure I’m not the only one who was inspired to reread it.

  26. Karim
    Posted March 29, 2017 at 8:23 PM | Permalink

    I decided a while ago that I didn’t actually care if book 3 came out. I’ve read two of your books and a novella; they’ve provided me with hours and hours of pleasure and relief. I can’t placate the odious neuroses/brain waves/chemical cocktail apparently hellbent on fuck-monkeying your head, but I can confidently ease some of this self-pressure by saying that I speak for many, many fans who feel the same: we wish you well, and nothing more.

    You do you. Fuck it, dude.

  27. kitz08
    Posted March 29, 2017 at 8:42 PM | Permalink


    We all hope you are doing good, but we understand that “Some days simply lay on you like stones.” Like many on here, I’ve always read your books in time of that I’ve needed some happiness, and Slow Regard came out. Soon after, I saw you in Milwaukee. We just want to thank you for all you do, and we hope the best.

    “To be so lovely and so lost. To be all answerful with all that knowing trapped inside. To be beautiful and broken.”

  28. Extesian
    Posted March 29, 2017 at 9:41 PM | Permalink

    Sweet child of Telhu and Lady Amalthea, you’re a beautiful man.

  29. Raealina
    Posted March 29, 2017 at 11:22 PM | Permalink

    Hey Pat,

    So, for the record, I’m not even sure of who Tom Bombadil is at this moment (though I do plan on looking it up and doing my research (reading another book/series). However, some of what you said really spoke to me.

    I have Complex PTSD from an utterly fucktarded childhood, severe social anxiety and general anxiety, depression and ultimately, while on one hand, life is freaking great, (professionally speaking) on the other it’s not looking great or even remotely promising no matter what I do.

    So for your realism, thank you. For every moment that you spend on each thing that pulls you away from time with your family and children, thank you. For your passion, for your determination, for being who you are, thank you.

    It gives me courage. It shows me that, even I, can have confidence.

    Thank you for persisting when you want to hide. Thank you for blogging, thank you for your time on Twitch, for sharing so much of your life with us…. Because in the few times I have met you, I know that is when you seem out of your element, though there has been definite progression in your public appearances and showing the world who you are. I know that for me, that is the most difficult. It has been noticed. It is appreciated.

    For all the people out there bitching about book 3 (Doors of Stone) not being done yet, there are so many more of us that understand, and love you for all the work that you are putting in to make sure our fantasies about your fantasy become perfected.

    I Thank you… With everything I have.

  30. MomoChii
    Posted March 30, 2017 at 1:27 AM | Permalink

    We all care for you <3 Please take care and be kind to yourself. We care about you and only want to see you do well.

  31. Sealofservants
    Posted March 30, 2017 at 4:25 AM | Permalink

    New user here, though I’ve casually followed the blog for a while. Your having worked on Kingkiller for so long and comment that the writing isn’t going well made me think of this excerpt from Mark Twain on writing when he was struggling to finish Tom Sawyer:

    “As long as a book would write itself I was a faithful and interested amanuensis and my industry did not flag, but the minute that the book tried to shift to my head the labor of contriving its situations, inventing its adventures and conducting its conversations, I put it away and dropped it out of my mind.”

    “It was by accident that I found out that a book is pretty sure to get tired along about the middle and refuse to go on with its work until its powers and its interest should have been refreshed by a rest and its depleted stock of raw materials reinforced by lapse of time. It was when I had reached the middle of Tom Sawyer that I made this invaluable find. At page 400 of my manuscript the story made a sudden and determined halt and refused to proceed another step. Day after day it still refused. I was disappointed, distressed and immeasurably astonished, for I knew quite well that the tale was not finished and I could not understand why I was not able to go on with it. The reason was very simple — my tank had run dry; it was empty; the stock of materials in it was exhausted; the story could not go on without materials; it could not be wrought out of nothing.

    “When the manuscript had lain in a pigeon hole two years I took it out one day and read the last chapter that I had written. It was then that I made the great discovery that when the tank runs dry you’ve only to leave it alone and it will fill up again in time, while you are asleep — also while you are at work on other things and are quite unaware that this unconscious and profitable cerebration is going on.”


    It’s not what anyone wants to hear, but maybe a sabbatical from writing would do you good and help you finish out strongest on this last book. Just a thought.


  32. nirakara
    Posted March 30, 2017 at 5:57 AM | Permalink

    Pat, I read this short story two days ago and before I read this post, and the pure enjoyment I received from it was the same that I got, and still get every time I open one of your books. Now I don’t know you but I swear can feel you smiling through the text (even more so when you break through the fourth wall in this little piece!). So while your words may be crack cocaine to us, they are more importantly a health potion to you. So keep having fun writing, and if book 3 isn’t fun right now then Devi fanfic will do just fine :)

  33. anemotis
    Posted March 30, 2017 at 10:05 AM | Permalink

    I think we all use the word “success” wrong. Somewhere along the way we mixed our emotions in, and decided that to be happy we had to be successful.

    “Success” is quantitative. It is a list of things you have done, or things you have in your possession (house, family, career). Success is NOT qualitative. Success doesn’t describe how you feel about what you’ve accomplished, the struggles you faced to get there, the mixed feelings about your arrival, or the enormous uphill battle to go further. Success totally doesn’t care that you spend hours and days away from your family; or that you just want to play a video game without the accompanying guilt that suggests the time could be better spent; or that you are a three dimensional person and that everything you are adds up to more than just “author”.

    Be Pat for a while. Do something different. Let go of a few “successes”. Find happiness. Be well.

  34. kentjhayden
    Posted March 30, 2017 at 1:17 PM | Permalink

    That story gave me soooo much joy. Thanks Pat.

  35. Laughter
    Posted March 30, 2017 at 2:02 PM | Permalink

    Dear Pat,

    This love is from all the slightly broken people out there.

    You are one of us. You are not alone. All of who you are is beautiful to us.

    From Laughter and all.

  36. cwcwrites
    Posted March 30, 2017 at 4:45 PM | Permalink

    Hello Pat.
    As someone who suffers from a tremendous anxiety disorder, and frequently stares at words on pages and spirals into obsessive critique that prevents any semblance of literary brilliance from sparkling, I hear you. And when I hear you, I hear myself (far less in the realms of success to you, but still a kinship of sorts), and I can’t help but think that if you, with your prose and your meticulous magic, question and find yourself in the murky mud banks of self doubt, than there must be hope yet for aspiring authors trapped in the bog. You may not see it at times, the knowing success that awaits you, but your readers do. And your children do. And as it was before, so too will the you sometime from now. Even if it isn’t right this moment. Time is only passing. It will pass with your book, or without and when your readers are able to step once more into your worlds, it’ll be as if no time passed at all.

  37. Lain
    Posted March 30, 2017 at 10:17 PM | Permalink

    In all honesty, I’m quite new, and so will make this brief. It’s lovely to hear that you’re still writing, whether you find it fulfilling or otherwise, and that you are still finding ways to enjoy yourself. Given that I’m a total stranger, I can’t exactly give you an encouraging pat (ha!) on the shoulder. In place of that, I’ll just say that there has never been I time when I have not enjoyed your writing – and even if that wasn’t the case, my cat would still very much enjoy chewing on the books’ pages.

  38. theotherjason
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 1:33 AM | Permalink

    Hey Man! I Love you but Bast is right.You are not an Innkeeper.

  39. Richd00d
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 9:49 AM | Permalink

    Wow, interesting replies. I bet you got more than you bargained for with this post. Let me just add that it’s always hard to complete the things about which we are passionate. Partly because we want them to be perfect (which they never will be) and partly because we don’t want them to end. But that passion is what makes something great instead of just good. Mathematicians work for years on a single proof and for nothing more than the knowledge that they’ve contributed something new to the science of mathematics. All of the hard labor will be worth it in the end. And I’m sure you know this and I’m just throwing papers in the wind, but for what it’s worth, I know book 3 will be great simply because of your passion. That’s needs no proof.

  40. MrPensees
    Posted March 31, 2017 at 4:17 PM | Permalink

    I’m sorry that the writing is going poorly. We’ll wait. We know that you’re taking time to give us a product that you can be proud of. Even the people who are being being jerks about book 3 are coming from a caring place deep DEEEEEP down.
    Live your life, live some fun stories to share with us when you have time. And take care of yourself and your family. Your fans care and while we figuratively can’t wait for book 3, we literally can and will!

  41. robert byram
    Posted April 1, 2017 at 3:26 AM | Permalink

    Pat, family is the important thing. Next, for me, would be that disc golf course
    you said you had by your place. It’s a great way to clear out a bit. That funk is
    the doldrums on your path. The only way to get through is to paddle your ass
    off. Love what you do. You got me off my ass to buy some chickens for people
    I didn’t. Paddle on sir.

  42. Posted April 2, 2017 at 4:01 AM | Permalink

    Hi Pat. I don’t know if there’s much more that can be said except that it’s clear that your readers care about your foremost and above all as a person. Your happiness, your family, and those around you matter vastly more than anything else. Everyone here knows that, and the outpouring of support makes that clear.

    There’s a lot of good practical advice in these replies. I hope something here chimes with you, but if it doesn’t, of corse that’s alright too. Just take time to find your own way through. You will find a path that works for you.

    We believe in you.

  43. MrPensees
    Posted April 2, 2017 at 7:19 PM | Permalink

    I need to remember that this is here. Anytime I’m feeling less than optimistic about humanity I need to come back and read these comments. I’ve been following this blog since 2011, and this is the first time that I’ve read all of the comments. It’s such a relief not to see anyone jumping on Pat’s back about book 3 after what he said (I honestly expected AT LEAST one)
    It’s also amazing to me that we all clearly care about the story, and we all want book 3, but so many people care more about Pat’s well-being than his product. I can’t honestly say that I don’t care if book 3 never comes out, but thinking on it; I don’t really care how long it takes. Obviously I’ll be happy when it comes out, but I’d rather see the joy of the old days in the blog.

    Pat this is just another amazing thing that you’ve done. You’ve gathered good people from around the world and brought out the best in us. Thanks for that. And thank you everyone for keeping my optimism alive >^.^<

  44. xiidaen
    Posted April 2, 2017 at 8:35 PM | Permalink


    Let some of the beauty, joy and and endless wonder you put out in the world be reflected back To you and for you. Fans may be as fickle as,the ever-changing moon, but still we may serve to brighten your way in times of darkness.

    As for the story…I’ll be in my bunk.

  45. StumpChunkman
    Posted April 3, 2017 at 8:42 AM | Permalink

    My favorite part about the Unbound Worlds cage matches is every time they counted Devi out, and then she won. In Devi’s matches, the predicted winners were Sandworm (Round 1), Randall Flagg (Round 2), Harry Dresden (Round 3), All of us really (Round 4). I feel that the authors writing the predictions finally realized her potential (one round too late). Just something that made me chuckle to myself. Also, she totally could have beat Tom Bombadil in a cage match, as he wouldn’t have his forest and forest friends with him.

  46. MRK
    Posted April 3, 2017 at 12:58 PM | Permalink

    Goldberry smiled warmly at Devi. “I like the way he sings to me,” she said simply, with a small, almost bashful smile. “He cares for me, and I feel safe around him.” She looked out the window again, and when she looked at Tom, her face practically glowed. “And he has a wonderful laugh.”

    So much yes. Reminds me of Martin’s

    When he thought of Nissa Nissa, it was his own Marya he pictured, a good-natured plump woman with sagging breasts and a kindly smile, the best woman in the world.

    Thank you.

  47. servant
    Posted April 3, 2017 at 1:54 PM | Permalink

    so…..statistically…book 3 will come out next year…..

    But seriously please don’t rush it or yourself. Leave the writing alone for a while and spend more time with your children before school takes them away. We will be here to read it once you deem it worthy.

  48. Posted April 3, 2017 at 2:07 PM | Permalink


    Life can be a lot sometimes, and there is no such thing as normal. Life can be a war full of many battlefields. Take it one battle at a time and focus on how many lives you’ve touched with your writing and how many more will be touched as they discover your writing for centuries. You’ve already left a mark, and you’ll continue to do so.

    Many great minds have had notable internal struggles and battled with mental illness. Some people never find a place in the world, and you have. You’ve found your own place and at your own pace. Remember why you write and remember it’s for you.

    A few weeks ago, I wrote you a note about helping with Worldbuilders and helping with your vision. That offer is still open, and we can chat at SDCC.

    Best wishes.

  49. COdebatecoach
    Posted April 3, 2017 at 4:29 PM | Permalink

    Elodin vs. Ged

    My vote for next year! And no-one gets to know the Name of Naming!

  50. jasondubya
    Posted April 4, 2017 at 7:50 AM | Permalink

    If I’m being honest I’ve been annoyed as shit at you from time to time over the years for not finishing the book. Mostly grumbling comments “fuckingrothfuss..” you know the sort! I’d imagine you’re plagued with those same recriminating grumbles in your own head. Well, at some point it changed and while I still look forward to reading your book I’m more than happy to read your blogs, activism rants, one of these days I’ll catch a twitch stream live, podcasts, and various other mediums you present yourself through. You’ve given us hours of entertainment and enjoyment then turned around and started speaking out about subjects you feel strongly about. Your newsletter this morning didn’t pertain to me, but I appreciate it nonetheless. I’m pretty sure it’s your sincerity, dude. The way you speak and write about things you care about, it just comes off as real. So eh, Patty, write the book when you write it, we’ll all read it when you do, until then teach the kids howto play Catan or howto wreck faces on Overwatch. It took me a bit of time and you posting/sharing things before I could empathize.. but even assholes can come around.

    Blah Blah.. I’ll go read this fight now ;)

  51. WingdingsProse
    Posted April 4, 2017 at 7:32 PM | Permalink


    I’m sorry to hear that even heros with accomplishments like yours can feel off track. I empathize more than I wish I could. Keep your chin up and breath through your barriers.
    Below is a page I’ve returned to many times when I’m feeling stuck.

    Your fan,


  52. zbarmstrong
    Posted April 5, 2017 at 8:24 PM | Permalink

    Hey Pat – something getting me through work anxiety recently is this. You are not your accomplishments or your failures; whether you published the entire Kingkiller Chronicle by age 25 or you never finish book 3, the book are not who you are. They aren’t what you’re made of. Sure, the frustration with the book 3 process feels bad, but it sounds like it’s eaten it’s way to the center – emotionally you’re telling yourself, however quietly, “I should feel bad.”

    Now, what you’re really made of, the better, truer things – that’s a big question that won’t fit in this space. But those better, truer things, that aren’t your accomplishments and failures, that exists.

    I don’t know if that helps; I hope it dos somehow. It’s just a little personal experience from the last year and a half that I hope finds a little purchase in the heart of a stranger.

    Much love.

  53. sealdog
    Posted April 6, 2017 at 9:57 AM | Permalink

    First of all, my condolences on your illness, for a mental illness is assuredly as serious as any other.

    Secondly, as I read your story of Devi and Goldberry, I really felt like you have turned the corner. I remember well your Kvothe/Aslan story from a couple years ago and man, *that* was a beautiful story! I read NotW and WMF and enjoyed them immensely (weird Ademre culture and forced sexual morality notwithstanding), and the Kvothe/Aslan story was a sweet blend of fantasy heroes. I’ve donated to Worldbuilders and appreciate the support you offer to the poor of the world.

    However, as I said, your recent story (not to mention so-called activism) has shed light on a truly depraved and sad side of your writing and personality. I don’t think there is any way someone can call the Devi/Goldberry erotic tale something beautiful, and to me this tale shows me that you are no longer an author worth following, despite seeming adulation amongst the geek culture. To take something from Tolkien and sex it up, and then to say it was an easy and fun thing to write, just shows how far the mighty have fallen.

    May you find peace and healing from your illness, and if you eventually write another book I hope it pleases you.

  54. Chess Jane
    Posted April 6, 2017 at 5:46 PM | Permalink

    Hi Pat,
    I’ve read your blog for years and this is my first time commenting. I feel I should add a disclaimer, I’m English, a teacher and I’ve had two (three) glasses of wine. I read this post and have not read any other comments and have no real understanding of you as an individual or your family, mental health etc.

    You may already be doing this, this could be a totally superfluous or even border line insulting thing to say; I’m going to say it anyway because you know, internet. If you’re feeling bad, sad, down, off, like everything had been moved two inches to the left and no-one told you (basically euphemisms for not mentally well) my advice is to see a doctor. They may suggest talking, counselling, therapy. They may suggest medicines, a vacation, a lifestyle change. They may not have the answers.

    I know how cathartic an outpouring of love online can be, how it can bouy you up and make you feel loved and supported. Sometimes, however, there is no substitute for the opinion of an educated professional.

    I’ve read this back, it sounds terrible and I sound pompous and may well be talking bollocks. But I’m not going to change it.
    I really enjoyed that Neil Gaiman video. Hope you have a good day.


  55. jiachen09
    Posted April 8, 2017 at 9:32 AM | Permalink


    I haven’t read all of the comments on this thread. I only read two or three of them, but already I get the idea that anything I write you will be superflous. I also know that you’re a busy person and sincerely doubt you have the time to write all the comments posted here. So, the likelihood that you will read my comment is very small.

    I’m going to write it anyways.

    I’ve read your books, your blog and any other piece of writing I can get my hands on for years. I love the way you write, your attention to detail, your wit and sarcasm. I especially loved “The Slow Regard of Silent Things” because as someone who comes from a a family with a history of mental illness in the form of depression, I really connected with it.

    I also belong to a Patrick Rothfuss facebook fan page called “The Kingkiller Chronicle.” I’ve read a hundreds of comments about you and your writing on there, so I feel like I can confidently make my next statement.

    This pressure that you’re feeling doesn’t come from your fans, it comes from your overactive critic.

    Now, in some ways this pressure is good. It motivates you to not put out an unfinished project, to push yourself to find better lines, to sharpen your prose, to write wittier dialogue. But there is a point where your critic starts to harm you, and I think you’ve arrived there.

    I realize that I’m making this comment from a place of “not truly knowing Pat.” I’ve never met you, never had a conversation with you. I’ve only observed your nature (which is good) and the comments that you’ve made on a few of your video FAQs that have been posted to Youtube. It seems like you have this idea that your fans are perpetually upset with you, but I don’t think that’s the real problem. I think the real problem is that you’re upset with yourself.


    I know how inane that is going to sound. As a person who has suffered from depression, I know that when someone, even a good-intentioned someone, tells you to stop feeling bad your first reaction is to give that person the middle-finger. F-off you know-it-all. I hope that you won’t. I hope that you’ll understand that while I haven’t been where you are, I do understand something about an overactive critic and depression.

    First off, you’re doing fine. You have books that everyone loves. You have a huge TV/Movie/Game deal. That is a big deal. You have a third book that, if the others are any indication, is going to be well received. Things are “ok.” So maybe it’s time to give yourself a break. And I don’t mean stop writing, but give yourself a break mentally. Tell yourself that things are going to be “ok.” At some point you are going to finish your novel and people are going to love it. In the meantime, enjoy the process. It probably sucks that your novel hasn’t grown into what you want it to be, but someday it will. Someday you will write a relieved, ebullient post about how glad you are that it’s done. How happy you are that we get to enjoy it with you. In the meantime, enjoy today. Enjoy editing and writing and take a break to write something else if you really need to recharge your batteries.

    One last thing, I promise this is it.

    Tell the negative voices to F-off. But use the real word. I don’t because I’m a crazy religious type, but you should. It helps me sometimes to tell myself that the negative voices come from an outside source and then I tell myself that I won’t listen to them. That a malicious force is trying to deter me. Then when they come I ignore them or focus on the things that I love, which for me is writing and family. Be grateful. You have a lot of wonderful things going on in your life, focus on those. And don’t forget to have fun.

    That’s my two cents. Don’t let the negative voices drag you down. Keep trudging along and before you know it, Book 3 will be complete and in our hands.

    Best of luck to you, Pat.

  56. Karissima
    Posted April 12, 2017 at 10:39 PM | Permalink

    First you set yourself to rights. And then your house. And then your corner of the sky.

  57. michael.h.tritter
    Posted April 15, 2017 at 4:44 PM | Permalink

    As I read through all the comments, I eventually ran tears. Such a huge outpouring of something even better than love, it was the *realness* found there, how *human* the responses were. There was immeasurable love for Patrick typed out, but even better to witness was that it wasn’t contrived or puffed up. Readers are each doing their best to say something spiritually important yet simply articulated, not to impress anyone, not to get anything for themselves, but only to help. This is an almost utopian gathering.

    And I think a good portion of the credit for that goes to Patrick. His initial offering inspires us still. As do his continuing works.

    I’m proud to be among the countless fans.

    “Many people need desperately to receive this message: ‘I feel and think much as you do, care about many of the things you care about, although most people do not care about them. You are not alone.’ ”
    — Kurt Vonnegut

  58. shawnlemon
    Posted April 25, 2017 at 8:54 PM | Permalink

    I loved the story of Devi, Tom, and Goldberry. Magical :)

  59. Camruinn
    Posted June 8, 2017 at 11:03 PM | Permalink

    I love you Pat, but there’s no way Devi beat Dresden in a fight.

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