Brandon Sanderson is one of the most influential fantasy authors of the last decade. It came as no surprise that Wired would do a piece on him and the media empire Sanderson built. However, what shocked fans and Sanderson alike was the Wired article turning into a hit piece blasting Sanderson and his readers.

Mistborn (2006), Tor Books

The article “Brandon Sanderson Is Your God” took a clear anti-Mormon angle, mocking faith in general and citing Mormonism as a religion where its followers become gods.

The writer, Jason Kehe, alleges Sanderson agrees to his characterization but does not provide any quotes from Sanderson nor context, where it is more likely Sanderson is simply being polite to the interviewer when having someone patronize his faith.

Brandon Sanderson via Brandon Sanderson YouTube

RELATED: Brandon Sanderson’s Kickstarter Success Draws Outrage, Accusations Of White Privilege From Fellow Writers

In the sprawling 4,000+ word article, Kehe, a senior editor at the magazine, takes shots at Sanderson’s writing multiple times. He also questions whether Sanderson is a good writer multiple times during the piece and posits Sanderson doesn’t have many articles written about him because his writing isn’t good.

What Kehe means by “good” is something elitists would applaud on a prose level, taking multiple shots at Sanderson’s fans and Sanderson’s work—citing Sanderson giving “the fans exactly what they want” as if it’s a negative thing in writing.

This is a typical San Francisco elitist mentality with art and fiction, where professional commentators and reviewers want to dictate what people should and shouldn’t like based on their biases. In recent years, critical scores have often been at odds with fan ratings, evidenced across several different Rotten Tomatoes reviews of movies. With their progressive agendas, it seems the cultural elite are at odds with the average person regarding what they enjoy.

In Kehe’s instance, he derides Sanderson’s fanbase, signaling his wokeness in mentioning how Sanderson’s fans are mostly white and male—as if those identity characteristics are somehow a bad thing. He calls some of the fans at Sanderson’s very popular convention “menboys,” a derogatory term often used by liberals online to insult long-time fans of genre fiction.

The Way of Kings (2010), Tor Books

RELATED: Brandon Sanderson Reveals Two Big Fixes He Would Make To Prime Video’s The Wheel Of Time

Despite not providing much context or quotes regarding Sanderson’s interviews nor what’s said by his fanbase, Kehe paints a picture where the fans are immature readers who don’t understand what good writing is.

In reality, Brandon Sanderson made waves with a Kickstarter last year, raising more than $40 Million for novels releasing in 2023. He has one of the broadest fan bases in all of publishing, with people from many walks of life.

To make a sweeping generalization based on identity is disingenuous, and to imply the readership somehow has less reading capability or mental acuity than what he imagined shows how out of touch Kehe and other elitists are with what people want from fiction.

Brandon Sanderson’s recently delivered Kickstarter rewards. Photo: Jon Del Arroz

Sanderson’s work has a hallmark of heroes who struggle but eventually prevail through faith. The works are often wholesome, without a lot of the political lectures or sexual degeneracy in most modern fantasy fiction. The wholesomeness offends the elites in fiction and commentary circles, as they have worked hard to ensure such fiction doesn’t get promoted, instead endlessly pushing authors like N.K. Jemisin, who has made an entire career out of race-baiting, even though most people find such fiction unreadable.

Kehe alleges in the article he followed Sanderson around for five months to come up with this hit piece on him and his fans, even being invited into the author’s home before turning on him. It’s clear from his tone he’s jealous of Sanderson’s success, faith, and sheer work effort.

Surprise! Four Secret Novels by Brandon Sanderson Kickstarter Campaign. Mock-up cover art by Steve Argyle, Howard Lyon, and Geoff Shupe.

RELATED: The Wheel Of Time: Brandon Sanderson Takes Issue With Characterization Of Nynaeve And Thom As Well As The Introduction To The Tinkers

In reality, Sanderson comes across as a very nice and polite person who cares about his fans and the writing community. He’s been teaching writers at Brigham Young University for years, runs a podcast on how to write, and seems to care about the craft and everyone involved.

Having met him personally several times, he is one of the most genuine people in fiction. While Kehe kept insisting he couldn’t find the “real” Sanderson, it’s Kehe’s projection that he was looking at Sanderson as some fake persona who he would find some deeper negativity behind. Many of the elites deride religion, faith, and fandom and presume everyone else has the same mentality.

What Kehe found, even if he couldn’t conclude himself, is that Sanderson very much is who he displays himself to be—a genuine nerd who loves fantasy fiction, his family, his readers, and his church.

The Hero of Ages Book Three of Mistborn (2008), Tor Books

What do you think about the Wired article on Brandon Sanderson? Leave a comment below and let us know!

NEXT: Elden Ring Publisher Bandai Namco Interested In Collaborating With Brandon Sanderson, Author Teases “I Have Some Ideas”