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
New to the series? Read our spoiler-free review of A Game of Thrones.
Over at “Not a Blog”, George R.R. Martin has published his schedule for Bubonicon 44 in Albuquerque, New Mexico between August 24th the 26th. As usual at these convention appearances, there’s a reading ... and this time, the reading’s a surprise: rather than read the extract from The Winds of Winter that Martin has read at his last few appearances, he’s treating everyone to the very first public reading of an extract from The World of Ice and Fire, the setting guide that Linda, George, and I have been working on, on and half, for… well, awhile. ;)
As GRRM’s hinted in earlier “Not a Blog” posts, he’s recently written a few historical pieces for the book, pieces that answer questions that some fans have had about the history of the Seven Kingdoms and the early reign of the Targaryen dynasty from the very start of the series back in 1996. If you’re in the ABQ area and don’t have plans for that Friday, you can get yourself a day pass for $15. And, hey, evenings? Parties are where you’ll find GRRM hanging out. His advice for those going to Worldcon holds for Bubonicon, and will give you a sense of how approachable GRRM can be at an SF convention.
It’s quite remarkable to note that A Dance with Dragons, the fifth novel in the “A Song of Ice and Fire” series, holds the #10 place in the New York Times Hardcover Fiction bestseller list for http://www.nytimes.com/best-sellers-books/2012-08-19/hardcover-fiction/list.html August 19th... and as one notes there, this marks the 52nd week that the novel has been perpetually on the short list for hardcover fiction.
Of course, the mass-market paperbacks continue to do well, with A Game of Thrones presently at #11, with the other novels ranging down to #18. They’ve all been on the bestseller list for a minimum of 44 weeks (for A Feast for Crows), while A Game of Thrones has been on the list for 69 weeks, and seems likely to be hanging on for a good while more.
Long in the making, at last we’ve our third and final part of our discussion of prophecies in “A Song of Ice and Fire”, in light of the events of A Dance with Dragons. There are, as you might guess, spoilers through the five novels in the series to date. This particular one actually deals with a very early prophecy—or prophecy-like utterance—from A Game of Thrones. Apologies for any syncing issues, by the way—it looks like our minor editing caused a slight slip in the sound syncing to the video.
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Two weeks ago, we reported that George R.R. Martin was being honored with a World Fantasy Lifetime Achievement Award, shared with British fantasy author Alan Garner. And now we’ve learned that on the final ballot has been released, and Martin’s A Dance with Dragons, fifth novel in the “A Song of Ice and Fire” series, is nominated in the Best Novel category!
Thanks to the Kosmopolis International Literature Fest, George R.R. Martin is involved in a Q&A in Barcelona, and it’s being live streamed. Apparently A Dance with Dragons is part of the focus on the conversation, so there may be spoilers for that novel. Also, bear in mind that Martin’s answers are translated and repeated in Spanish, so it takes a bit longer to get from one question to the next. Once a video archive is available, we’ll link it, just as we have been with others of Martin’s appearances in Spain via the So Spake Martin collection:
This was just announced today: the World Fantasy Convention has announced that this year’s World Fantasy Award for Lifetime Achievementwill go to George R.R. Martin and (the very excellent) Alan Garner. It’s an award that’s been given to a number of notable writers in the past, including Terry Pratchett, Jane Yolen, Peter Beagle, Urusula K. LeGuin, and more.
More information about the recipients can be found at the World Fantasy Awards site.
Garner is one of the writers Martin has admired, so it’s particularly nice that they are receiving the award in the same year. In fact, Martin has a noble house named after the British author, with the arms referencing his enigmatic, unforgettable novel The Owl Service (Order: Amazon US, Amazon UK).
(Thanks to @olafkeith for noting this to us.)
In our latest entry in our video series, I discuss a minor “mystery”. It’s not one that we dealt with in our post-A Dance with Dragons little mysteries video because, well, we didn’t think it’s a mystery. But we’ve had enough people ask about it on the A Song of Ice and Fire forum that Sean T. Collins’ suggestion that we tackle it made sense. For those who already knew the answer, I do discuss some related topics that may be of interest.
It ought to go without saying, but this contains spoilers for A Dance with Dragons:
Now, a couple of notes. Firstly, Linda and I are on a long (working) vacation, and while we could in theory record more videos, our internet connection out here in the far reaches of Scandinavia is shaky enough that it would take issues to get them uploaded (and that’s if it’d be stable enough to allow a long video upload). So, probably no new videos until August. Secondly, some sort of Youtube behind-the-scenes code adjustments have made it that I can’t directly reply to any comments (and there’s been many good ones in the last week), so I’m sorry to say that until that’s resolved, I won’t be able to answer any questions offered in comments. But keep them coming! Once it gets fixed, I’ll try to catch up with everything.
After my video concerning the Kingsguard went up, a common question from commenters at our Youtube channel related to a throw-away comment I made, concerning a theory I have regarding Dawn, the ancient, magical greatsword of the Daynes, wielded by those men found worthy of bearing it and the title of Sword of the Morning. So, to answer those questions, here’s a video I put together pointing out a bit regarding what we know of the Daynes, the Sword of the Morning, and Dawn.
Having spotted this already on the shelves in our local SF/F speciality bookstore, I decided to check what the word is on Bantam’s 2013 A Song of Ice and Fire Calendar (Pre-order: Amazon US, Amazon UK), with art from Marc Simonetti.
It looks like July 10 is the official release date, though it may well be that some booksellers have already put it on the shelves (as our local shop did).
We’ve only seen a few preview images up to now, so getting a chance to at last look through the whole calendar was quite a pleasure. Particularly noteworthy was a fantastic image of Daenerys in the House of the Undying and a vivid landscape featuring the Rhoyne. Well worth sticking on your wall next year, but make sure to order one sooner rather than later—these tend to sell out their print runs within a couple of months, and after that finding them at reasonable prices can be difficult at times!
After a long, long delay—almost a year—Linda and I have finally put up the promised second part of our discussing prophecies in A Song of Ice and Fire in light of A Dance with Dragons...
... only to realize, after we posted it, that our promised second part was supposed to discuss an entirely different prophecy from the one we covered! So, you’ve got part three to look forward to. This, and many other videos about A Song of Ice and Fire and Game of Thrones can be found over at our Youtube channel.
Tonight at 7PM, George R.R. Martin will be reading—almost certainly from The Winds of Winter—at Town Hall Seattle, part of the Summer Reading Series hosted by Clarion West, one of the leading SF/F/H writer’s workshops. George will also be available for a Q&A.
Tickets are already sold out through the official outlet, but according to Brown Paper Tickets:
A small number of tickets may be available at Town Hall at 6:45 p.m. for those in the Stand By line.
So, worth a shot.
Thanks to Ben Bella, our essay in Beyond the Wall: Exploring George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire (Order: US, UK), “The Palace of Love, The Palace of Sorrow: Romanticism in A Song of Ice and Fire”, is now available in full via the Smart Pop Books site. It’s available for just one week, after which it’ll revert to an excerpt.
Thanks to Boiled Leather Audio Hour hosts Sean T. Collins and Stefan Stasse, Linda and I spend some time discussing our essay in Beyond the Wall: Exploring George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire (Order: US, UK) which officially hit shelves on the 26th of June.
Over at “Not a Blog”, George has posted a lengthy update on various projects, from those that are done (The Lands of Ice and Fire poster map collection [Preorder: Amazon US, Amazon UK]) to those in-progress (such as The Winds of Winter, Dangerous Women and the fourth Dunk & Egg novella, the latest Wild Cards novel Lowball, and Old Mars), and on to those just in the planning stages (Old Venus).
One in particular might be of special interest to followers of Westeros.org, since it’s The World of Ice and Fire, the world book that we’re are co-authoring with George. Here’s what George has to say:
Speaking of that last stuff… yeah, there’s some really neat details in there, and perhaps a new mystery or two for fans to ponder. Some fans have long wondered just how Aegon’s Conquest was carried out, how the Vale of Arryn fell under their control, the status of Dorne in that time, even the order in which the Targaryens conquered each region… well, they’ll be wondering no more, on those topics, and quite a few others!
Over at George R.R. Martin’s Not a Blog, GRRM notes that he’s supporting a charity drive to support the Wild Spirit Wolf Sanctuary—a non-profit organization that takes in and shelters abused or abandoned captive-bred wolves. To assist the sanctuary in its fund-raising efforts, Martin has donated 40 first edition hardcovers of A Dance with Dragons, which will come autographed and personally inscribed for the first 40 people to donate $100 or more to the charity. As he notes, the swelling attendance of his signing events has made personal inscriptions much less common than they once were.
Besides that, there’s also a chapbook available for those who donate $10, which he’ll sign (but not inscribe).
The Westeros network consists of several different sites, including a forum and a wiki, for all your A Song of Ice and Fire needs.