All Sorts of Weird Stuff: News

All Sorts of Weird Stuff offers news and information about George R.R. Martin, in particular about his A Song of Ice and Fire series.

"When I was young, I read all sorts of stuff. One week it would be Lovecraft, the next Vance. It was all imaginative literature, or as my dad called it 'Weird Stuff.' It was all 'Weird Stuff.'"

George R.R. Martin

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GRRM

An Update on Dunk and Egg

George R.R. Martin has updated “Not a Blog” with a lengthy post discussing the status of the Dunk & Egg novellas, set about 80 years prior to the time of the novels. Besides the fact that the fourth novella is partially complete but on hold for now, Martin notes he already has a fifth story roughed out in his head, with a prospective title of “The Village Hero” and its setting being the Riverlands. Perhaps more saliently for many who have patiently been waiting for the A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms collection of the first three novellas is the explanation from Martin that the collection will arrive some time in 2015. But it won’t just be a straight-up collection: it will be richly illustrated by award-winning (and, frankly, legendary) artist Gary Gianni. Well-known for his work bringing Robert E. Howard’s Conan, Solomon Kane, and others to visual life, as well as many other pulp figures, most recently Gianni provided the artwork for the 2014 A Song of Ice and Fire Calendar.

According to Martin, Gianni’s pitch for illustrating the collection is far beyond the initial handful of illustrations originally envisioned, and instead will feature much more artwork. Very exciting, for fans of Gianni’s work, as well as for fans of the novellas. Martin does not that some foreign language editions of an unillustrated version of the collection have already been published, but the English-language edition will have to wait until 2015 while Gianni finishes the work.

Below, a bit of speculation on “The Village Hero”.

ImagineFX Releases Game of Thrones-inspired Issue

ImagineFX, a leading fantasy and science fiction art magazine published in the UK, has revealed its May 2014 issue, featuring a spectacular depiction of Daenerys Targaryen by Mélanie Delon.

Delon provides a step-by-step breakdown of the work that went into the piece (the magazine is filled with tutorials for fellow artists), while Grzegorz Ruthkowsk does something similar with a battle sequence drawn from A Song of Ice and Fire. Best of all, a brand new interview with George R.R. Martin will be featured in the magazine.

The magazine can be purchased on newstands as well as via ordering at the ImagineFX site, where both print and digital copies are available.

World of Ice and Fire Completed

Although George announced his completion of work on The World of Ice and Fire (Pre-order: Amazon US, Amazon UK) in a post on Not a Blog last week, Linda and I have held off a similar post because our side of things wasn’t yet quite done: a sidebar we felt was important needed adding, an afterword needed tweaking, and GRRM’s Iron Islands material needed trimming…

But now all that is done, and outside of art approvals, final copy edits, and the like, Linda and I are essentially done as well. From 2004, when the subject of such a book was first broached while having dinner with George and Parris in Santa Fe, to 2006 when bidding among publishers finally led to our signing a contract with Bantam in 2006, it’s been a long effort—not a continuous one, mind, after the initial discussion, outlining, and the very first draft, as the bulk of the work waited until A Dance with Dragons was more or less done and George had more time to consult. Consult he did, and he made a number of contributions which, as Tolkien before him said, “grew in the telling”. Some of these narratives have since been published in partially abridged form—“The Princess and the Queen” in Dangerous Women (Order: Amazon UK), “The Rogue Prince” in the forthcoming Rogues (Pre-order: Amazon UK).

Martin Reveals Rogues Details, Own Story

Over at “Not a Blog”, George R.R. Martin provides some news on the forthcoming cross-genre anthology he’s co-edited with Gardner Dozois, Rogues (Pre-order: Amazon US, Amazon UK)... and in the course reveals that he has decided to contribute a story himself, another piece of the “fake history” of House Targaryen. Here’s Martin in his own words:

“The Princess and the Queen,” Archmaester Gyldayn’s somewhat abbreviated account of the Dance of the Dragons, got a great response from all the folks who read it in Dangerous Women, so we’ve dipped back into the archmaester’s somewhat disorganized piles of scrolls and crumbling manuscripts, and brought forth another piece of his unpublished history.  “The Rogue Prince, or, the King’s Brother,” will tell the story of the years leading up to the calamitious events of “The Princess and the Queen” during the reign of King Viserys I Targaryen, with particular attention to the role played by the king’s brother, Prince Daemon, a rogue if there ever was one.  I hope you’ll enjoy it as much as you did “The Princess and the Queen.”

Best of all, though originally slated for quite a late publication, it looks like all the stories are in and ready to go… so Rogues will hit shelves in the US on June 17th.

Fans of “The Princess and the Queen” will be in for a treat. As we’ve told fans on our forum in the past, Prince Daemon was one of the most remarkable men of his age, and what you saw of him in “The Princess and the Queen” is only a taste of the enormities and feats of which he was capable.

You can find the full table of contents for Rogues below:

Ice and Fire Art Gallery Exhibit

While New York may get a lot of the interesting events around Game of Thrones—the “Epic Fan Experience” at the Barclays Center being a case in point—it’s not the only thing going on out there. Of particular note for fans of A Song of Ice and Fire is Seattle’s LTD Art Gallery current exhibition: “Winter is Coming”, a presentation of artwork influenced by the novels, presented by George R.R. Martin and put together with his direct input. All the works on display in the gallery are available for sale, in some cases as originals, in many cases as prints. There’s an amazing trove of treasures, including original works of art by Ted Nasmith and Donato Giancola, and prints from the likes of Amok (with an awesome depiction of Aegon and his sisters), Marc Simonetti, Jim Burns, Jen Zee, and many more.

An excellent preview of the exhibit, including interviews with the gallery’s owner and participating artists, can be found over at Wired.com. The exhibit runs through March 23rd.

Wolf Sanctuary Fundraiser Goes Live

Earlier this month, we noted the upcoming fundraising drive for the Wild Spirit Wolf Sanctuary, sponsored by none other than George R.R. Martin and Parris McBride. As promised, we’d note when it went live… and it now has. A massive amount of A Song of Ice and Fire-related books and memorabilia, as well as Wild Cards books and other works by Martin, is in the offering, with various packages available at different funding levels.

The proceeds will go to support the Westeros Pack—named after characters from the novels—by providing them a larger habitat, which sounds excellent. All funding levels include signed “adoption” certificates, showing your sponorship of a particular wolf (or wolves) in the pack.

Sponsor the Westeros Pack

George R.R. Martin and Parris McBride have long been supporters of the Wild Spirit Wolf Sanctuary in New Mexico, a non-profit organization whose mission is to rescue and provide a sanctuary for captive-bred wolves, wolf-dogs, and othe related animals. The establishment of the Westeros Pack at the sanctuary—each wolf named after a character (or direwolf!) from A Song of Ice and Fire—is a natural extension of that. George and Parris have previously helped raise over $7,000 for the sanctuary by donating A Song of Ice and Fire and Game of Thrones memorabilia for a fundraising auction, and now they’re at it again—this time by supporting another charity auction on behalf of the pack.

The auction itself hasn’t launched yet, but in the interim you can learn about all the members of the pack, and even donate directly to adopt one of the wolves (or the whole pack of them).

When the auction goes live, we’ll be sharing a reminder…. but in the interim, Leyton Cougar, director of Wild Wolf Spirit Santcuary, answers a very important question:

Dangerous Women Bestseller

Via George R.R. Martin, we learn that Dangerous Women (Order: US, UK) has been an absolutely smashing success for an original fiction anthology, placing on several bestseller lists. Most notably, the December 22nd edition of the New York Times hardcover fiction list, where it reached the extended list’s 18th position. As Martin notes, the book has also placed on the Ingram’s and USA Today lists.

Many congratulations to Martin and fellow editor Gardner Dozois, as well as all the involved authors, and the publisher, Tor Books!

GRRM Contributes to Charity Auction

George R.R. Martin is one among a number of notable SF/F authors—including Neil Gaiman, Harlan Ellison, Joe Haldeman, Michael Swanwick, and Jone Yolen—who have contributed rare books, memorabilia, and other items to the Pearl Foundation, a non-profit organization founded by award-winning musician Janis Ian that funds scholarships for returning students. The biggest item going right now in their present auction? That would be a script from the first episode of the first season of Game of Thrones, signed by all the Stark actors. Notice the blades symbol under Sean Bean’s signature—he really is a a hardcore fan of Sheffield United!

With 4 days left to go, the script has encouraged 34 bids, and is presently sitting at a whopping $3,750. Also of note is a signed presentation copy of the limited edition of A Dance with Dragons with art by Marc Fishman, and a full set of the A Song of Ice and Fire novels signed by Martin.

The Pearl Foundation is definitely a worthy cause, so examine what’s on offer and see if anything might be of interest ... or just go ahead and make a direct donation!

Telltale Games Developing Game of Thrones Title?

IGN has reported that “multiple sources” have informed them that Telltale Games is “developing a game based on George R.R. Martin’s Game of Thrones.” While still a rumor—one that Telltale refuses to confirm at this juncture—the notion of Telltale, who has recently won a great deal of acclaim for their The Walking Dead adventure game (Order: Amazon US), creating a game based on the setting will certainly set many gamers to eager expectation.

Interestingly, IGN emphasizes that it’s not clear whether this rumored title would be based on the television show, or if in fact it’s based on A Song of Ice and Fire. However, given our understanding of the licensing arrangements between Martin and HBO, it seems extremely likely that the basis will be the television adaptation; the two previous computer games made by Cyanide were licensed prior to the HBO deal, and “grandfathered” in (and even then, the RPG worked out a license with the TV show to use its visuals and include vocals from actors), but going forward we believe HBO has exclusive rights to computer games.

It is, of course, a rumor, even if it comes from multiple sources. But IGN makes a case—if one reads between the lines—that Game of Thrones could well be the “dream IP” that Telltale executives have hinted at.

(Many thanks to @realcozur for the tip.)

Interviews Galore

George R.R. Martin has been visiting the lands Down Under, and in the course of it has met thousands of fans and signed thousands and thousands of books for said fans. But he’s been doing something else: giving interviews to the eager local media who seem as excited as the fans to have the creator of A Song of Ice and Fire and Game of Thrones on their shores. We’ve been dutifully collecting the interviews as they appear over at the So Spake Martin collection, but we’re going to include some of the more interesting ones below.

For fans of Game of Thrones. undoubtedly the most interesting will be Martin’s appearance with Lena Headey and Michelle Fairley at the Sydney Opera House. Martin enters at about the 34 minute mark, before which the actresses have the audience eating from their hands:

Another interview, from SBS 2, is shorter—but include Martin’s remarks on the Game of Bones pornographic parody film, as well as a reference to yours truly here at Westeros.org:

More on the Princess and the Queen

This past weekend, George R.R. Martin was the guest of honor at Capclave 2014, an annual SF/F convention in the Washington D.C. area. Besides hanging out with fans and signing books, Martin had not one, but two reading sessions. Thanks to fans on the scene, we’ve a number of reports from the event. On the first day, Martin read from “The Princess and the Queen”, his contribution to the Dangerous Women (Preorder: Amazon US, Amazon UK) cross-genre anthology that Martin has co-edited with Gardner Dozois.

Happy Nameday, GRRM!

Today marks the 65th birthday of George R. R. Martin, and of course fans across the Internet are showing their appreciation—there’s even a #HappyNamedayGRRM hashtag on Twitter. For our part, we were invited by Tor.com to write up a brief appreciation for George, part of a regular series of “On this Day” posts that the site (highly recommended for fans of SF/F/H) runs. We give a brief—all too brief, for a career that spans over 40 years—rundown of his beginnings as a writer, his rise to prominence, his time in Hollywood, and of course the massive success of A Song of Ice and Fire.

Have a good one, George—may there be many, many more to come!

A Glimpse at the Dance of the Dragons

Tor.com has been busily posting excerpts from the George R.R. Martin and Gardner Dozois anthology, Dangerous Women (Pre-order: Amazon US, Amazon UK), and today they have released the excerpt of Martin’s own entry, “The Princess and the Queen”.

The novella—which distills details Martin revealed for The World of Ice and Fire—recounts much of the Dance of the Dragons, the destructive civil war that tore the Seven Kingdoms apart from 129 to 131, and should provide some very interesting insights into the ancestors of Daenerys Targaryen. The excerpt is also accompanied by a longer, not too spoilerish review of the entire novella.

Dangerous Women will be published on December 3.

GRRM and Neil Gaiman Join Forces

... to give Paul and Storm a little lesson:

All in a bit of fun, of course! The source of GRRM’s “ire” would be this popular song from the comedy music duo, “Write Like the Wind (George R.R. Martin)”: