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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Sites of Interest
Ice and Fire Trivia in NYC

New York City’s Slattery’s Midtown Pub will be playing host to an official A Song of Ice and Fire trivia contest! On June 25th, five rounds of trivia questions based on the novels (not the TV show)—questions which we here over at Westeros.org have had a look over and some input on— will see the best teams winning some cool rewards, such as signed copies of the novels and more!

Sponsored by series publisher Random House and arranged by Trivia A.D., the full details of the trivia competition and registration for tickets to participate can be found at the event page.

GRRM on Conan

As we reported yesterday, George R.R. Martin appeared on the Conan O’Brien show last night. In the course of his appearance, he discussed writing the novels and keeping facts straight, and (to our delight) mentioned us over here at Westeros.org:

There are other clips of his appearance on the site, and the full episode should be available for streaming some time tonight.

Discussing the Winds of Winter Sample

After having a great lack of time these last weeks, the down time due to the delay of episode 9 of Game of Thrones by a week finally gave us a bit of time to record a new installment in our A Song of Ice and Fire videos. In this installment, we discuss the sample chapter from The Winds of Winter that is available at George’s official website. Naturally, there are spoilers! See the video below:

And as an added bonus, we would be remiss not to mention our appearance on Talkback Radio, where Linda and I spoke for an over an hour with host Justin Mireku about the Game of Thrones series in relation to the novels. There’s spoilers here, too:

World of Ice and Fire Update

We’ve been receiving questions lately regarding The World of Ice and Fire, as there has been a shift in the publication schedule which has led to it being pulled for pre-ordering from Amazon and other retaliers (for now). We’ve made a few remarks on the forum, but it seem that George himself has discussed the book at his appearance at the ConQuest convention in Kansas City (we’ve one report—more coming—at the So Spake Martin collection from Professor Henry O. Jacoby, who edited the Game of Thrones and Philosophy), and provided some of the details we’ve been sitting on. In fact, the interest must be pretty high, because even the Guardian—one of the leading papers in the UK—has devoted some time to covering the book.

Pre-order Dangerous Women

The latest anthology from George R.R. Martin and Gardner Dozois, Dangerous Women, can now be pre-ordered in the US (Amazon: Hardcover, Kindle). Among noteworthy contributors are Sharon Kay Penman, Brandon Sanderson, Lev Grossman, Diana Gabaldon… and GRRM himself, with a novella set in the Seven Kingdoms titled “The Princess and the Queen”. It will recount events leading up to and including the civil war called the Dance of the Dragons, when Rhaenyra Targaryen fought her brother Aegon over the Iron Throne.

It’s adapted from material written for The World of Ice and Fire, distilled down to a narrowed focus on the titular characters… but the world book, we promise, will provide a wider picture of the conflict, and the historical figures involved in it.

Rogues Delivered

According to George R.R. Martin at “Not a Blog”, he and co-editor Gardner Dozois have finalized and delivered Rogues, a cross-genre anthology featuring quite the list of contributors. The anthology, tied together by the titular concept, will be published by Bantam Spectra.

Martin provides a list of contributors and their stories, which include Joe Abercrombie, Daniel Abraham, Garth Nix, Neil Gaiman, Connie Willis, Scott Lynch, Carrie Vaughn, and many, many more. A full listing can be found below the cut.

The Wit and Wisdom of Tyrion

Some rather unclear news came out of a HarperCollins show case, in which it was revealed that George R.R. Martin has licensed to them the publication of a small gift book collecting some of Tyrion Lannister’s more insightful and amusing quotes from the A Song of Ice and Fire series. As some might note, HarperCollins is not the publisher of the series in the US… but as it happens, they are in the UK, and it appears that the idea may have originated there. Now Thanks to HarperCollins UK, we now have the official press release:

HarperCollins is delighted to announce that we will be publishing a surprise Christmas gift book drawn from the works of George RR Martin.

The Wit & Wisdom of Tyrion Lannister will be a small gift hardback (978-0-00-753232-2 in Short Demy – 203x135 – £9.99 November) featuring quotes and quips from one of the central characters from the A Song of Ice and Fire series (on which HBO’s hugely successful television series, Game of Throens, is based).

It has been compiled by the HarperCollins George RR Martin’s UK editor Jane Johnson and will be illustrated by artist and caricaturist Jonty Clark. Although the book is authorized by George RR Martin no new material from the author is anticipated: he is hard at work on the sixth and penultimate volume of the series, The Winds of Winter.

Jane says: “The idea for a humorous gift book featuring quotes from Tyrion seemed irresistible. He is everyone’s favourite character from the series and George’s fondness for him is evident: he gets all the best lines, even though – perhaps because – he’s no one’s idea of a traditional hero. He’s a dwarf; he’s ugly and he has a penchant for whores. He’s not gallant or heroic, and he’s completely ruthless. But he’s also witty, self-deprecating and clever; and he’s both a reader and a thinker and in my view that makes him a properly modern hero and a great subject for a little book like this.”

UK & Commonwealth (excluding Canada) rights in the book were licensed from agent Christopher Lotts.

GRRM and Avatar Press

Thanks to Bleeding Cool, we’ve learned that Avatar Press executive Jim Kuhoric spoke at a panel at C2E2 about various Avatar Press projects, and in the course of it he discussed some of what’s coming from George R.R. Martin. First and foremost, of course, is the comic book adaptation of GRRM’s World Fantasy Award-winning novella The Skin Trade, to go along with their earlier adaptation of Fevre Dream. Thanks to that, Kuhoric revealed that GRRM will be at San Diego’s Comic-Con (which GRRM has previously announced), where he’ll make an appearance at Avatar’s booth and sign books.

The most intersting item, however, was Kuhoric revealing that there’s a “George R.R. Martin original” in the works, which “may” be superhero related. Kuhoric suggests this is a departure, as previously the works they’ve published have simply been adaptations. They’ll reveal more later, but what I suspect this is is a brand new Wild Cards original comic book story, which will almost certainly be scripted by someone other than GRRM (possibly Daniel Abraham, responsible for the adaptation of Fevre Dream and the Dynamic Entertainment comic Wild Cards: Hard Call?).

To see Kuhoric’s sremarks, watch below beginning at the 2:50 mark:

GRRM at ConQuest 44

Kansas City’s annual, venerable ConQuest convention is about to have its 44th(!) con from May 24th through the 26th, and as it happens, George R.R. Martin will be a guest there. He and Parris have long been supporters of this convention, which we’ve been told is one of the best fandom-organized conventions around. Many other guests will be on hand, including guests of honor Patrick Rothfuss and John Picacio (award-winning illustrator of the 2012 A Song of Ice and Fire Calendar.

Here’s the press release from the convention itself:

Rage of Thrones

Australian comedy band The Axis of Awesome have decided to share their views on Game of Thrones, and we suspect it gives voice to feelings some fans of the novels have occasionally had well up in some deep, dark corner of their soul:

“Hollywood cannot live up to the power of imagination!”—so full of rage, and yet so very true!

GRRM at Texas A&M

We previously reported that Texas A&M’s Cushing Memorial Library had arranged for “Deeper than Swords”, an exhibition of material from their collection of material from GRRM that they have been archiving for many years. Martin himself was present for a couple of days of the event, and now those who missed out on the opportunity to attend can get a taste thanks to the university recording and placing on Youtube’s Martin’s speech and interview which was a centerpiece of the whole event:

For more from the event, see this post from author Martha Wells, who attended the events and took many photos of the exhibit and events.

GRRM Launches New Official Website

For those who drop by Georgerrmartin.com—Martin’s official site on the web—will have discovered that it has now gotten something of a facelift. It contains all the great features—the essays, the photos, the miniatures, and more—that make it stand out as uniquely Martin’s personal site, but it’s been given a much more modern design. 

You know, we knew about plans for this for… well, a long while, we won’t mention how long exactly. ;) But glad to see it’s finally come to fruition.

The Telegraph Interviews GRRM

An excellent new interview with George R.R. Martin has been published by the UK newspaper The Telegraph. Conducted and written by Jessica Salter, the article takes us into Martin’s home—some very nice pictures of his collection of ASoIaF-related art, and (for us) a rather thrilling look at one of the stained glass windows he commissioned for his “Library Tower” (thrilling, because the design is very familiar)—as he discusses his life and his work.

It’s definitely worth reading.

A Historian on Ice and Fire

The Guardian has published a very good article by popular historian Tom Holland, ahead of the premiere of Game of Thrones. He discusses in some detail the historical antecedents of a number of characters and events in the novels, but goes on to explain why he feels Martin’s approach to creating and populating his world is essentially second only to J.R.R. Tolkien’s (high praise indeed) despite being far less rigorous. A very entertaining read, especially as it starts by considering the series in relation to the Booker Prize-winning historical fiction of Hilary Mantel.

World of Ice and Fire App Hits Android

You’ve asked for it, and now it’s here. The A World of Ice and Fire app—a handy, dandy, official and art-filled guide to the novels that Linda and I helped provide the majority of the content of (with oversight from GRRM)—is now available for Android at Google Play (unfortunately, for the time being, it’s US only).

There’s a deal of new content along with this version of the app, content that will be included in the iOs app when it gets its next iTunes update. These include:

    Presently, it is US only—that’s the only caveat.
  • Profiles for the Men of the Night’s Watch, Brotherhood Without Banners, and the Free Folk
  • 30 new illustrations for key places
  • The ability to search for characters by alias
  • Further improvements to the anti-spoiler and map functionality