I first wanted to say thank you for all of your wonderful writing, and great job with Jaime Lannister, he is rapidly turning into my favorite character.
He has a certain deadly charm, I will admit.
Quick question - We have seen all of the seven kingdoms in action in one way or another except Dorne and the Vale. I am trying to get an understanding of the various strengths of the different realms. When Robb calls the Northern Banners he gathers a host of about 18 thousand men. How do Dorne and the Vale compare to this (I don't expect numbers, just general feeling)
I'd say these three kingdoms were roughly equal in the force they could assemble... but the north is much bigger, so it takes longer for an army to gather. And life is harsher there as well, so lords and smallfolk both need to think carefully before beating those plowshares into swords.
I also gather that Highgarden is the most populated place (Renly mentions 40,000 men), with the Lannisters being next (two combined hosts in GoT seem to be about 35,000).
The Reach is the second largest domain (after the north), and the most populous and fertile as well. The westerlands are the richest, with all the gold and silver in those hills. Those two regions also have the greatest strength at sea, after the Iron Islands.
Dragonstone appears to be the least powerful. The Riverlands and Stormlords appear to fall in the middle I imagine.
Dragonstone is last, agreed. The riverlands are rich and fertile and populous, but suffer from divided leadership and a lack of natural boundaries. The stormlands have lots of trees and rocks and rain.
Keep writing, and many thanks!
You're welcome, and keep reading.