[Summary: This is a conversation between Mr. Martin and Ser Benjen through AOL's Instant Messanger service. It has been edited for clarity.]
SerBenjen: May I ask you 2 questions?
SerBenjen: Thanks. How long were the Targaryens on Dragonstone before they invaded?
GeoRR: a couple hundred years
[Note: Skipping ahead for clarity.]
GeoRR: Well, there are lots of new characters... you met some of them in the four chapters... you sure you heard the name right?
SerBenjen: That's how they spelled it. I just thought it sounded a bit odd.
GeoRR: New characters in ASOS include...hmmm... the Queen of Thorns, the Magnar of Thenn, Tormund Giantsbane, Ser Garlan Tyrell, Queen Margaery's cousins, the sellswords Daario Naharis, Brown Ben Plumm, and Mero the Titan's Bastard, the singer Tom o' Sevens, the outlaws Lem Lemoncloak, Jack-Be-Lucky, and Anguy the archer, the black brothers Small Paul, Satin, Owen the Oaf, and Sweet Donnel Hill, a Dornish paramour named Ellaria Sand... many more...