25 years ago, I won an audition to do the second novel in (then) TSR's brand new Forgotten Realms world. In that book, "The Crystal Shard," I introduced a dark elf, Drizzt Do'Urden. And here I am, a quarter-century later, all ready to talk about the next book featuring this guy.

Or anything else you want to talk about, of course.

Comments: 2771 • Responses: 58  • Date: 

BarbSueRoberts555 karma


RASalvatore491 karma

Thanks for that. It's funny, because every year I seem to look at the Drizzt books in a different light. A couple of years ago, I had this epiphany that what they really represented was my own journey, as I try to make sense of the world around me. Carl Sagan called "COSMOS" his spiritual journey - I'd say the same for Drizzt.

I've now come to see something else in them, and it's mostly because of the feedback I get: these books, for many readers, seem to be a lifeline back in time, to their old gaming days (pre-internet for many) and/or high school or junior high...I get the same feeling when I'm writing them.

RASalvatore472 karma

Okay, my time is up for today (have to go do some interviews)...thanks for the interest and the kind words. I'll be back here tomorrow from 12:00-2:00 Eastern time...

Then back again on Friday from 12:-1:00 Eastern.

The next book, "Charon's Claw," comes out next Tuesday (if I don't mention that, the publicist will kill me). Thanks again for stopping by (I'll try to get in early and answer the questions I couldn't get to today.)

Peace, Bob

behemebash396 karma

Were you involved at all with the 38 Studios collapse? I would like to hear your perspective. Also, any chance of seeing Amalur again?

RASalvatore348 karma

Promise I'll get to this tomorrow - not ducking it. Short answer is, no, but I'll elaborate when I have time.

RASalvatore56 karma

Okay, here's the short and long of it.

At the very beginning of 38 Studios - circa 2006 - I came in as a "partner" with a seat promised on the Board of Directors and all of that. We were just trying to make a game. Over the next couple of years, things changed. I never got on that board and never had any say in the business decisions, and got to the point where I wasn't even being asked my opinion on those decisions. This was fine with me - I just wanted to create a world and make a game.

In 2010, because of many changes in the direction, scope, funding, etc. of the company, my contract became a worthless piece of paper (including my compensation potential, since all of my money was on the back end).

We got that straightened out, but really, most of my work was long done by then. I think I went to 38 Studios...maybe 10 times from October, 2010 until the end this May. So no, I really didn't have any part in the collapse, other than the fact that it broke my heart (I love what the amazing team was making of that world I created) and I'm listed as one of the major creditors of the company, since they technically owe me for 4 years of work (I took it all on the back end - didn't want to saddle a start-up with the expense of having me on staff).

So there it is.

RandyPneuman10 karma

A) Thank you for coming back to the question. Not something that happens all that often

B) Not trying to stroke your ego but I thought the story of the world of Amalur was the best part about the game. The idea of the house of ballads was just really cool and I think you did an incredible job of creating a world and mythology that I can get into right off the bat.

RASalvatore9 karma

I agree that the story was awesome, but I didn't write it, the amazing narrative team at BHG did. i created the world and approved the story lines, but they deserve the credit.

Wrath_of_Everblight339 karma

So I'm here to apologize.

But first a story.

Many, many, years ago my best friend and I were excited to hear that one of our favorite authors was coming to a local book store for a signing. We were ecstatic and carefully chose which tattered and worn out books we each would bring to have signed and what we might say to someone we held in such high regard (If I remember correctly I brought Homeland :) ).

Anyways the day finally came and my friend and I waited in line. We had shown up early but were still no where near the earliest to arrive, and so we waited eagerly. We couldn't believe we would get to meet the author of some of our favorite books. We began reminiscing about and retelling our favorite fantasy and sci-fi stories in order to pass the time, arguing minutia and speculating on the futures of our favorite characters.

I don't remember what discussion got me so riled up, but I do remember telling the story of chewbacca's death. It was emotional and I was ranting. I was acting it out with gestures and voices and posing for effect. As I reach the climax of my story I stood feet spread roaring and shaking my fist in defiance of the falling moon (or the ceiling in this case lol), and as my roar died I realized there was silence. I looked to my friend and he was staring ahead of us in silent terror. I followed his line of sight and realized for the first time that we had progressed almost to the front of the line. And that what was left of that line had stopped everything they were doing to stare at me. That the line had parted and that R.A. SALVATORE was staring at me. My heart lept into my throat.

"That was a really emotional time for me. I would prefer we didn't talk about it" he said to me. I was mortified. The situation had spun so far out of my control. This is not how I wanted this conversation to go! I panicked. My teenage mind froze and reacted the only way it really knew how.

"OH I get it. We can only talk about YOUR books I guess." I replied sarcastically, laughing to myself and looking at my friend for support. He wasn't laughing. He was looking at me the way I would imagine one looks at someone explaining with conviction how the sun revolves around the earth, which is flat and they know they are right because if it was round you would fall off it.

"That WAS one of my books." He replied matter-of factually.

The shame of it all dawned on me. That for some reason in that moment my mind had equated R.A. Salvatore to the Drizzt books, and forgot that you had written all those other amazing books. I was heart-broken, and embarrassed and I just wanted to crawl under a rock and die. I walked silently through the line without looking at anyone, got my book signed and left with the tattered remnants of my dignity.

Looking back on it, I laugh at my socially awkward and insecure youth. I still tell this story every so often to friends and family for a little bit of self-deprecating humor. And I just wanted to apologize for making a fool out of myself and to thank you for bringing a little life and adventure to my youth. (Also all quotes are just remembered to the best of my ability. It's been a long time! lol)

TL/DR; Most embarrassing moment of my life, I love your books! Thank you for being so awesome

RASalvatore25 karma

Haha, that's awesome. I assure you that the moment stung you more than it ever could me.

There's nothing to forgive. Apology accepted, but not needed.

And now I've got a new story to tell, so thanks for the reminder!

frostimus214 karma

Artemis Entreri is one of my favorite characters in fiction. I really loved being able to follow him in the sellswords trilogy. I think taking the 'evil' Entreri and giving him his full credit in those three books made one of the most in depth characters I've read from you. Do you have any plans to do something like that again? If not, which 'evil' character would you choose from your previous books to give their own trilogy to?

RASalvatore149 karma

Without spoiling anything, if you're read the newer books, you'll find that there are plenty of those gray area, borderline evil folks milling about. So yes, i can say that I expect to do, in the very near future, a book or three focusing on a group of players who see the world through cynical eyes and act accordingly...

frostimus76 karma

Excellent! I've got some catching up to do, I set down the series at the Ghost King because I enjoy plowing through 2-3 books in a few weeks and I had caught up. Sounds like its time to pick up some more Salvatore books. Also, forgot to mention, I found The Crystal Shard when I was bedridden after appendicitis and read about 12 of your books in about as many days. Thanks for the quality writing getting me through a rough patch in my life.

RASalvatore85 karma

You're quite welcome. Enjoy the new adventures!

quasimodoca200 karma

First off you are by far my favorite fantasy author!!
Question: Would you ever see a way of bringing Drizzt to the big screen? I would love to see a movie based on him.

RASalvatore265 karma

I'd love to see it. Tell Hasbro!

Gloman42181 karma

Do you keep a "series bible"? Any advice for keeping things consistent and avoiding mistakes with character/setting details over so many novels?

RASalvatore1172 karma

WotC keeps one, and it's a good thing! Too many books! Too many years!

I remember I was thrilled when I started writing "Servant of the Shard" because Jarlaxle could finally be front and center. Then I was terrified because I was on a tight deadline and realized that I had no idea of what this guy had for equipment, given all of his cameos in the previous books. So I went to a message board anonymously and started a thread "Let's inventory Jarlaxle's cool items!" A few days later, I downloaded and printed the 10-page thread - these folks had put in page numbers from the books and everything in their discussion of Jarlaxle...hehehe.

Braindamaged99170 karma

How do you pronounce Drizzt?

laethyn83 karma


Is the answer Salvatore gives me every time I ask

RASalvatore7 karma

I was about to type that - really.

Bearfists128 karma

I absolutely loved "The Cleric Quintet", is there any chance we may see another spell powered protagonist in the future?

RASalvatore155 karma

Yup, but I can't talk about it.

FJSpoof127 karma

What would you say was your favorite book in the Drizzt series and why? (Without spoilers, if possible, for those who haven't read it yet) I'm sorry if this question gets asked often! I panicked under pressure!

Also, I'd like to say I think you are one awesome writer and I read my first Drizzt book about 2 years ago. I honestly couldn't put it down.

RASalvatore277 karma

Homeland. It's still Homeland. Being able to create Menzoberranzan was terrifying and, in the end, very satisfying. When I wrote that book, the whole Drizzt story made sense to me.

zegron86 karma

Homeland is still my favorite, it inspired me to use it to write a screen treatment for it while I was studying in college for my film and tv degree. Thanks for writing compelling characters!

RASalvatore261 karma

Thanks for your interest. Did you know that I based drow society on the work of Mario Puzo (The Godfather)?

Vodstok66 karma

I love Homeland. I read it when I was 15 and for some reason it woke me up to the fact that I could actually write fiction myself. 21 years later I'm still writing and actually get paid for it sometimes.

I still have my original paperback from '91. :)

RASalvatore151 karma

Whenever I hear from someone who was inspired to write because of my work, I don't know whether to thank them or apologize. It's such a painful exercise sometimes, and so satisfying at others.

bob000000005555124 karma

Did you have any sort of paradigm to your writing?

Also a selfish request: would you mind writing a creative sentence or two addressed to me: I had a 200 dollar bet years ago that I would one day get RA Salvatore to write for me. Of-course I never thought that would ever happen...

Also I really enjoy your writing, thank you.

RASalvatore459 karma

I have a mood-setter (music) and a special place or two where i hide, if that's what you mean.

And here you go: "Drizzt looked at Guenhwyvar nad shook his head. "Ever am I tasked with satisfying conditions of someone else's bet. And never do they share the winnings. That's why I love you, Guen. You don't talk."

Miguelpaco115 karma

You say that you're a gamer. What are a few of your favorite titles that you've played over the years?

RASalvatore298 karma

Well, for board games and tabletop, there's Risk, War and Peace and of course, D&D (with a little GURPS thrown in). It's funny because I still play 1st Edition.

On the computer front, Everquest and WoW were my primary MMO's. Reckoning was my last RPG (I created the world for it)...and I'm psyched because I just found out I can get Goldeneye on the Wii.

ilamaaa97 karma

Asia is mine Biatch!!

RASalvatore261 karma

Until you don't defend Kamchatka well enough...

ilamaaa82 karma

I got Australia backing me up

RASalvatore186 karma

You're weak in the Middle East...now that South America is mine, Africa will soon fall...

sLnTsRvC101 karma

I will sit in Australia and grow the whole game and screw over the first person that pisses me off.

RASalvatore198 karma

My Dad...sounds like my Dad, circa 1980.

ilamaaa57 karma

What do you do if the first person to piss you off is not in Siam?

RASalvatore131 karma

Roll over anyone in his path to get there, of course.

Yagermiester65 karma

i miss you in EQ old friend take care. i have also started semi retirement from EQ. i miss raiding with you.

RASalvatore114 karma

I tried to go back recently - it's just too clunky now. I wish they'd update that world from scratch, original EQ, and with all the pain!

flyingcars102 karma

What is your position on fan fiction? Do you allow it? Oppose it? This seems to be a controversial topic among spec fic writers.

RASalvatore248 karma

I am supposed to tell you that it's evil and wretched and destroys anything and everything I've ever tried to accomplish.

Truth is, this is supposed to be fun and entertaining, and when I hear about fan fiction using my characters, or when I see variations of my characters running around in an MMO, I think it's the coolest thing ever. Truly flattering. Now, I can't read the fan fiction, for obvious reasons, nor can I consider it "canon," but I'm still flattered.

clemsonpk81 karma

Drizzt is one of my favorite fantasy characters. I remember when I first encountered him in the Baldur's Gate series, I got really, really excited.

Any talk of future plans to return to return to the Forgotten Realms in video game form?

RASalvatore151 karma

I remember that moment, too (I didn't know he would be in the game). I asked him for his magic items. When he wouldn't hand them over, I, of course, attacked him. He wiped me out...danged munchkin!

Kaorimoch63 karma

I "trapped" him in the middle of the lake and fired about 1000 arrows to kill him so I could take his stuff!

RASalvatore118 karma

I eventually burned out many wands of summoning to keep him busy while I plunked him from afar.

itzjamesftw55 karma

What was it like working with Curt Schilling? As a baseball fan it always intrigued me that he also had deep gaming roots, it's not a common transition from professional baseball to MMORPG.

Love your work btw!

RASalvatore82 karma

Curt is an incredibly intense guy. He's always "on." It's infectious, honestly. He and I had a good relationship, though I wasn't very involved in the last couple of years at 38.

ilamaaa49 karma

I used to read insane amounts of fantasy and at a certain point I felt I was reading the same stories over and over again and different worlds, still it is a major part of my childhood and I believe it played a huge part in shaping who I am today.

Do you find the stories in fantasy books often follow a formulae?

Also thanks for contributing to the many wonderful escapes and adventures the made my childhood so much more interesting.

RASalvatore129 karma

I don't know that I'd call it a "formula," but certainly if you read fantasy book after fantasy book, you'll find similarities and patterns. These are heroic quests, and they're going to take you along an adventure, and there are only so many ways to do that.

As a side note, one of the joys (for me) in reading George Martin was that he took all of those expectations and flipped them on their collective head.

ilamaaa27 karma

I love the way you flipped that... since GOT I have been meaning to start getting back into fantasy again, it is just so damn good! and totally skewed all my preconceptions.

RASalvatore76 karma

Thumbs up, indeed...I just wrote a forward for a book of essays on that series, called "Beyond the Wall."

jarlaxlesmercs46 karma

what are the chances of a series of novels focused entirely on jarlaxle/bregan daerthe? or does it work better when he's just behind the scenes manipulating stuff. drizzt isn't quite evil enough for my taste

RASalvatore97 karma

It's not in the cards right now, but you never know. That said, you will be seeing more of Jarlaxle, I promise, and more of Bregan D'aerthe...and more of other drow houses. I miss Menzo and will be going back in the near future.

Mobojo31 karma

I love Jarlaxle, not so much for him being evil and an opportunist, but for how he deals with situations. He doesn't really have earth shattering power or items, but all of his trinkets and how he uses them is really fun to read.

RASalvatore73 karma

Well, he's got his Batman Utility Belt...

iamPotsy46 karma

Would you rather fight 100 duck sized horses or 1 horse sized duck?

RASalvatore208 karma

The former. The latter is too expensive (a huge bill).

rickhigbee44 karma

Who is your favourite author and is you writing style similar to theirs?

RASalvatore115 karma

There are a few. Tolkien of course. Is my writing style similar to his? I wish!

Another is Fritz Lieber, who did "buddy fantasy" about as well as it's ever been done. And a third would be Terry Brooks. I've been reading him since the late 70's but am now way behind (sorry, Terry).

el_di22 karma

Fritz Leiber is great, which one is your favorite book if I may ask?

RASalvatore35 karma

The story with "60-60" - was it "Ill Met in Lankhmar"? It's been far too long since I've read those!

Erachten41 karma

In 7th grade I picked up The Silent Blade (read these way out of order at first) and I read the first fight scene, where it described Artemis' blade piercing the robbers lung. I knew I was hooked then. Very rarely do I reread parts of books but the fight at the end, between Drizzt and Artemis, I read over and over. My question: Do you study any particular form of sword play for your books, or research many in general, or do you mostly make up the style as you are writing?

RASalvatore102 karma

I was a bouncer (paid my way through college) and did some training with the other bouncers, who were Airborne stationed at Ft. Devens. I did some boxing in high school in a club some friends and I put together, and studied at a local martial arts' studio until my knee told me to knock it off.

Also, when I wrote DemonWars, I signed my young sons up for fencing lessons (the elven sword dance in that series is fencing) and took notes and grilled their instructor while they were out on the mat beating the tar out of each other. I'm a good Dad like that...

The most important thing in any fighting is balance. I start with that and work my way out.

Talisman090937 karma

Hi Bob, I've been a collector of your books for two decades now. Living in Tasmania at the very bottom of Australia has not made it very easy to get your books but they do get here eventually and I have managed to collect the vast majority of your releases. I'm looking forward to getting my hands on as much Drizzt as you can write. I'm loving Kingdoms of Amalur:Reckoning. Are there any plans for a second game in the series and if so will you be involved in it.

RASalvatore65 karma

Sadly, 38 Studios has collapsed. Really broke my heart, as I loved Amalur - and Reckoning was only a TINY slice of that vast world.

EA has publicly stated that they'd like to publish a sequel, so maybe someone will pick it up. I'd love to see that, and to be a part of it.

MotsawaArri29 karma

R.A. Salvatore.

I'm not particularly sure how to approach this subject, and honestly I've been meaning to write to you for about 12 years now. I just have something I want to tell you, and it's a bit of a story but I hope you don't mind. I grew up in what I remember to be a very terrible place. I am African American (Relevant) and was raised on the "streets" and in a very disturbing environment.

Children always fighting, surrounded by drugs, neighborhoods vying for strength and power, not very much unlike Menzoberranzan. I was raised in a firm belief that the world was wrought of ill intent and that the people around you strove to gain and edge and take advantage of every weakness that you ever showed. It is in my nature to feel as though everyone has something good in them and something to offer me. Needless to say I did not fit in where I was born and where I was raised. It was at a very early age that I experienced the very distinct difference between my peers and I. I will not go into details about specific events, but I suppose you could imagine considering you've sure to have seen how well "friends" and "family" get along in Drow society. I just mean to point out that there are parallels, many of which I have lived myself.

When I was a kid, I don't remember which age specifically because those years just blend together for me, I was given Homeland by my abusive stepfather. After reading the book I later found it ironic that he gave it to me, but then I found that he gave it to me because he thought I was smart enough to grasp it and he wanted to drag me into Drow ideology. My stepfather is insane. He is abusive. He thought himself a matron mother of sorts. All of this is besides the point though I suppose, I merely mean to say that I was shown your books by someone who couldn't even grasp the meaning or intent behind the words you had written and in a place and society that could never appreciate the true value of becoming something more in the world.

I remember reading through that book and the only thing I could feel was that I was not insane. Here, somewhere in the world, whether it be my imagination or some made up fairytale, there was someone who was as hard pressed by the life he lived that I was. Here was someone being abused, and someone being forced into a life that stained the very fabric of his existence and being. I was confused by the sheer reality of the situations that he had to overcome and the relations in which I had with them. I did not feel as though I could "relate" or that Drizzt was "like me." I merely felt as if there was someone who had been and is strong enough to overcome all of these things that plagued and drew me into the abyss that I thought I might forever been enveloped in.

I remember very vividly how my eyes were opened by the mere fact that Drizzt had accomplished the very thing I had thought I might never accomplish myself. Having watched people die, having watched gunshots be fired for no reason other than words, having seen people kidnapped, having been beaten, having been verbally abused, and there I was crying and wondering how I might overcome these things. I was still alive, and life had yet to be lived.

I just wanted to say to you that Drizzt Do'Urden, to me, has been like an older brother. For as long as I can remember, having been born in 1990, and for as long as I will remember and perhaps as long as you continue writing he has been and will always be an inspiration for the ventures of my life. Drizzt Do'Urden did not teach me how to live, no, he showed me that there was nothing, not the hood, not a drug dealer, not abusive parents, not a meek outlook, not a forlorn hope and dream, that could stop me from aspiring and reaching for more than what was set out before me.

I picked up fighting, I have become great. I picked up writing, I hear that what I say and what I tell people helps everyone that I speak to. I have joined the army and escaped the life that I thought I might be bound to. I am in fact writing this to you now because on August 8th I will see you here on Fort Lewis, and wasn't sure if I would have enough time to say this to you in person. I have evolved from the small helpless black child in the ghettos of America to a Computer Information Systems Management student who loves to write, fight, game, and play the bass. I can exist wholly as a person who embraces, not hides and cowers for fear of death or punishment, himself.

I am contrary to everything I have ever been taught by the people I consider my seniors. I am contrary to the very existence of the environment I was raised in. I have moved past and overcome the ghettos and I have brought with me all the knowledge and the ways of my people not as they taught me, but as I took from them. I have learned well to live my life on my own terms and with the joy, fun, and the breeze of the wind in my hair and I walk the road of adventure.

R.A. Salvatore if you take nothing else from this life please remember this.

You saved me from the person I may have been forced to become in order to survive. You helped me turn into the man that I am today by creating a child that you grew and molded like any other being on this planet might have been grown and tutored. You showed me through your son the way that life could lived, regardless of the hardship and regardless of the seriousness of the adversity you face. Sir, you kept me alive through the worst of it all.

I hope that when I get to shake your hand and thank you that you can fully understand and appreciate that you, single handedly, turned me from the life that much of my family and friends are still living and kept me alive all these years.

I thank you for the passion in life that burns through every fiber of my being and for every second I get to live realizing and remembering that life is not about walking or in the wake of ourselves. Life is about walking in the present, and becoming what we were always intended to be. Something of our hearts and something that we can be proud and happy with.

I hope you get the opportunity to see this, and when you come to FT Lewis on the 8th I will be there, Specialist Lamont Arrington, to shake your hand and thank you for all that you have done for me, and the world.

** I apologize for how scatterbrained and ill grammared this is, I was a bit flustered writing this.

RASalvatore15 karma

Someone cut-and-pasted this to me in an e-mail to make sure I had seen it.

I hardly know what to say. Thank you for sharing this; it touched me, and my wife as well. It is always overwhelming to hear that my work touches some people in such a way, and it's a reminder to me of why I do this. I'm looking forward to meeting you at Lewis. Please make sure - promise me that you'll make sure - that I know it's you!

tumeteus26 karma

Did your heart break when you wrote end to the Ghost king? You surely broke mine though, in a kind of good, melancholic way of course.

RASalvatore47 karma

Have you read the forward? Every word of that is true. Each morning I'd get up and watch three music videos, which put me back into the darkest place of my life. Writing that book was agony.

Sauroke25 karma

I am a huge fan of your work. I have read numerous volumes by you, and try to follow as closely as I possibly can (Time and work get in the way). How does the new adventure fit in to the series? Is it a continuation, or a side quest that tales place between different books? I would also like to know if you play computer or console games, and also which games you like the most.

RASalvatore33 karma

"Charon's Claw" is the third book of four in this Neverwinter Saga and picks up right where the second book, Neverwinter, left off. The immediate road for the heroes is pretty obvious in that one, and it leads to unexpected places. But no, I wouldn't call it a side-quest.

kcxtreme21 karma

Being a MMO gamer, have you ever played DDO? (Dungeons and Dragons online) Just interested because they just released an exspansion pack featuring Menzoberranzan. I was really excited to see how they would portray it.

RASalvatore35 karma

I played it a lot when it first came out, but got involved with 38 Studios and other things. I've recently taken another look and it's become quite gorgeous, so I hope to get back soon.

Edpalmatier21 karma

Have you ever considered, or do you plan on coming out with a book series on our world, something like Jim Butcher has done with the Harry Dresden series? And have you read any of his books?

RASalvatore26 karma

I have considered it, many times. On a side note, a couple of my series start in this world, but then go away to a magical place.

Ragestpeople21 karma

I love your books.I own almost all of them,because they are awesome!I started reading your books about 15 years ago(maybe?I don't quite remember) and I can't stop reading them. My favorite character is Jarlaxle.

My question is:Where did the names Drizzt Do'Urden and Catti-Brie came from?

Edit:changed 5 for 15 years,typo

RASalvatore101 karma

Drizzt came off the top of my head, when an editor was pressuring me for a "sidekick" for Wulfgar, the hero of my first book. I just spouted off, "Drizzt Do'Urden of D'aermon N'achezbaernon, the Ninth House of Menzoberranzan." I have no idea where that came from, or what a Menzoberranzan might be. True story.

When I turned in the first draft of "Crystal Shard," my editor, a woman, not-too-kindly informed me that there were no heroic, named women in the book...that was 15 days after my daughter, Caitlin Brielle, was born...

Drunkenmeister21 karma

Sir, I just want to thank you for making your books available in Turkey. During my childhood I was reading Dragonlance books till I found Drizzt. I first encountered Drizzt when I finished a game in PS2 as where he was the unlocked character. I googled his name and learnt about him, that's also how I started reading series of books in one sitting!

We can say it lead to playing D&D, MMORPGs, organizing local conventions, meeting other nerds and reading more series and eventually in this cosmos, finding Reddit through my internet evolution. This is maybe weird but your books started it all. One of the best advantages of Reddit for me is it has all these AMAs where I can just thank people who shaped my world. When I was in high school I would never think I'd never meet the writer or just even say him thanks or to be able to see that person talking to their fans. So once again, thank you for everything. Turkey and especially Istanbul has a big community of fantasy readers and they owe much to translators for bringing your book and above all to you for creating it.

RASalvatore19 karma

Well, thanks for the kind words. When I was in Toronto a couple of years ago, I met a young Turkish woman and her friends, and only then did I come to learn how big hte dark elf books had become in Turkey.

Very, very cool!

Thurokiir20 karma

You youuuuuuuuuuuuuu - You got me hooked on fantasy with Homeland!

How do you incorporate flaws into your characters? I've tried my hand at writing characters and every time they come out all preachy or overly indulgent.

Wulfgar is probably my favorite Was good, now has some serious shit to move through character. Also Drizzt should be incredibly sanctimonious and annoying but he isn't!

Big fan - Thurokiir

RASalvatore34 karma

Many people read the Drizzt essays as if he's preaching to them, but that's not the way to read them. He's talking to himself, honestly, with all the warts showing. He's not preaching, but just trying to figure things out.

And he'll usually get them wrong, particularly if they involve women.

riverblues20 karma

Is there anything odd, noteworthy, or ritualistic about your "writing experience?" Coffee? A certain room? Time of day?

RASalvatore31 karma

Coffee? Check.

George Winston music? Check.

Jonn Serrie music? Check.

Get to work...

milath17 karma

Mr. Salvatore I'm a big fan, having been reading your books since I was in my early teens. Even now at 30+ I still occasionally catch up with the further adventures of Drizzt. My favorites though, always involved the whole gang from the original trilogy (Catti-brie, Wulfgar, Bruenor and Regis, among others). With the more recent happenings, do you ever see a time when you would bring those characters back to the story again? Also, do you ever see a time when there could possibly be an appropriate movie adaptation of the stories, a la Lord of the Rings, or is the interest just not high enough for Hollywood?

RASalvatore29 karma

Like I said earlier, I don't know what's coming on the next page. Also, given the changes in the Realms, there may be call for "classic" stories of the times long past. So you never know.

As for a movie, it's really up to Hasbro. I'd love to see it.

xtcz17 karma

First of all, I love your work. Keep up the great work! Second of all, this might be a really broad stroke type of question, but who's your favorite character that you've ever created and why?

RASalvatore46 karma

The obvious answer would be Drizzt. And it would be correct. I've been with him for so long and through so much.

But there are many others - Entreri, Marcalo De'Unnero, Oliver deBurrows, Pony and Elbryan, Bruenor, Catti-brie - who fill other creative needs for me.

RASalvatore17 karma

Hello again. I'm Bob Salvatore returning as promised as I continue my blog tour for "Charon's Claw," my new Dark Elf book coming out on August 7 (next Tuesday).

But as this is an AMA, the discussions go where you want. I'll dive right back in with some of the questions from yesterday...

Avason16 karma

Thank you so much for all the wonderful books you wrote, not just the Drizzt book but also Spearwielder's Tale and the Highwayman, your books have been a huge influence on how we play our DnD games!

So for a question, what would you say is your favorite DnD character?

RASalvatore20 karma

Marcalo. I love 1st Edition monks and play them all the time...and almost always name mine "Marcalo" (if you've read DemonWars, you know that he's as good a bad guy as I've ever written).

nilcalion16 karma

Is it true that you are planning to release not one but TWO Drizzt novels next year?

RASalvatore32 karma

The next book, "The Last Threshhold," will be out in March...I can't say more than that, but the date of the next release...

Also, I'm well into the book after that (which is kind of weird, because I'm interviewing about next week's "Charon's Claw" release and my mind is wrapped around events long after that book.

warriorman12 karma

After working on Kingdoms of Amalur are there any plans to explore a game in the Drizzt universe in the future, or at least a thought of it? Also, thank you for giving myself and many others such amazing characters to fall in love with!

RASalvatore31 karma

Well, Neverwinter 3 is coming out next year, and the new series set up the region for Cryptic Studios' foray into the Realms...so yes!

And I epexct we'll see a lot more than that going forward.

Gloman4212 karma

Do you outline? If so, how far in advance do you go? Could you (I guess, briefly) walk us through your process when it comes time to start a new story?

RASalvatore44 karma

Every author should do an outline - whether it's a page or two, or 20 (I know one guy who does 80-page outlines). I do them and the publisher requires them.

Then I start writing and pretty much throw the outline away. For me, the outline just helps me get a feeling of the overall book, but once I get going, the characters tell me where to go and what to do.

Daleo12 karma

First I have to say that I love your work. I read all the Drizzt books last year and they really helped me through a tough time. The reason it was a tough time was mainly because I was reading Game of Thrones. I'd have to take a break after each dark GoT book with a few light-hearted Drizzt books.

My question is have you read the Game of Thrones books and what do you think about really dark fantasy type novels? Would you/have you ever write/written one?

RASalvatore18 karma

I read the first one and half the second - it's hard for me because reading the work of other authors can hurt my writing process (so I usually read the first one or two of each major series).

Martin is a wonderful writer (and a great guy, by the way). His characters are fantastic and the dialogue is as good as I've ever read. Great series.

RunawayPlane11 karma

I've been a huge fan ever since I opened up The Crystal Shard and have been hooked since then. I really enjoy Drizzt's journal entries throughout the novels and they definitely helped me put situations in my own life into perspective thank you for that. Were these entries an outlet for your own journey as well?

RASalvatore17 karma

This series - all of my writing - is my way of trying to make sense of the world and of, well, why I'm here. So yes, absolutely.

RASalvatore10 karma

Okay, my time for today is up - another interview awaits.

The one thing I don't like about this is that I can't get to every question, but I'll be back tomorrow from 12-1 (eastern) to try! Thanks for your interest!

Bob out.

Odarbi9 karma

Are there any tricks you find help you stay on focus when you're writing a story?

I've had an idea for a fantasy world I'd like to use for something in my head for a while, but the idea of creating an entire back history of the world just seems so massive I never know where to start and just end up jumping all over the place. All I ever really seem to do is add more ideas to my list of things I could do 'in the future', as it were.

RASalvatore16 karma

I do keep a file on my desktop called Good Stuff, where I tuck those ideas away for later use.

It sounds like you need an outline, and need to at least use it for pacing and to hit the major beats of the story.

Hoboetiquette7 karma

Drizzt in The Crystal Shard has always seemed a bit different to me than in the rest of the books. He seems a bit more jovial and flamboyant. For example when he is eating while he and Wulfgar are in a battle. Did you modify his character traits just a bit when it became clear that he was going to be the most popular character despite Wulfgar initially being the focal point of the series?

RASalvatore11 karma

it was more along the lines of Drizzt having nothing to lose in that book, then realizing that he had a lot to lose (and then going back to nothing to lose (lone Drow) but with a chip on his shoulder.

Excelsior_Kingsley7 karma

Who are your favorite writers?

Do you ever want to do something experimental with your books (something like Nabokov's Pale Fire but with even more fantasy stuff)?

Do you agree that Alison Brie is awesome?

Dr. Who companions is Amy Pond the best of all time? (honestly only one right answer)

I'm someone who hasn't read a lot of fantasy books save a couple of Glen Cook ones and a smattering of Michael Moorcock. Do you have any other suggestions for toe wetting?

RASalvatore23 karma

Tolkien and...truly, James Joyce, even though he depresses the heck out of me. And Michael Shaara.

I slip in some experiments, as you mention. I did a story, Bones and Stones," where I wrapped a Drizzt essay around a dwarf adventure, interweaving the drow's reflections with the dwarf's reality. Some loved it, many missed it.

"Community" is awesome, so yeah.

I'm not a "Who" guy. I don't know why. I used to love the comics when I was a kid, but I think that for too long, you couldn't find the series in my area at any reliable time or channel.

Try Terry Brooks and Fritz Lieber.

cdnmoon6 karma

Hi there! I'm excited to meet you in Halifax this October at Hal-Con. Thank you for visiting us!

What is your favourite perk about being a recognized author?

RASalvatore12 karma

Very cool - just don't tell me about the ammo ships blowing up, okay? Just kidding...

The only real perk of "fame" (which I don't like very much, and I'm glad it's "small" fame and not movie star or athlete level - that'd kill me) is being able to meet people who enjoy the work.