Hello!!! Time for me to recover from my long absence with a quick blog...
So, I don't know if anyone knows this, but I absolutely love reading! (Duh!) And easily my favorite genre is fantasy...with a little sci-fi thrown in to make things interesting. We're talking LOTR, Dune, Shannara, Ender, and many, many more.
But perhaps one of my favorite series is "The Wheel of Time" by Robert Jordan. I love the world, the characters, the conflicts...basically everything about this series. Yes, some of these 11 books tend to drag on (5-10 anybody?), but it's all part of a cohesive and extremely complicated story.
My admiration for everything WoT-related was jolted back in 2007 when I read that the Creator (heh, heh) of this series, Robert Jordan himself, had passed away while working on the final book. Fans the world over mourned for the man, but also for the death of an incomplete series until, thankfully, a new writer was commissioned to write the concluding book (which will now be 3 books). His name is Brandon Sanderson and he's gallantly stepped into Mr. Jordan's shoes and is doing his utmost to stay true to the world of the story, for which I commend him highly.
Anyway, he's created some cool opportunities for fans of the series, which I have gladly taken part in! As in all good fantasy, there's a great conflict between good and evil in this series which has led to many an exciting battle scene. In order to do battle scenes, you need armies, and Mr. Sanderson (or should I say "Bro. Sanderson" - yes, he's Mormon too!) has come up with an interesting way of creating one of these armies for the last book. He's gone through a charity called Heifer International, which nobly helps fight hunger across the world, to organize fans to donate. Whoever donates to this general fund joins the army that will be featured in the final book! He says it's not going to be obvious to the readers who this army is (there will be a lot of them in the Last Battle) unless you're looking for it, but by donating, you're effectively going to be immortalized in print - in fantasy!
So naturally, I signed myself up! That's right, I'm going to be fighting the Dark One in Tarmon Gai'don!