[Note: The following refers to remarks from the previous Technicon report, that GRRM stated only a page was left to be completed in the third Dunk & Egg story.
I thought that he said he needed about two days to finish the story.
I would like to share one comment GRRM made about the release date of ADWD. It is still incomplete, however, he added the caveat that if he completes the book by June the current release dates on Amazon are accurate. He seemed much more up beat about the book than when he appeared at Trinoc Con back in August. I'm now cautiously optimistic that we will see ADWD by September/October.
GRRM also said he believes he's a page away from completeing the third Dunk and Egg story. It is still to be published with the anthology Warriors.
GRRM at his panel on "Anti-Protagonists" made the comment that Jon would soon become a much greyer character than we had seen in the past.
[Note: For an example of Valyrian steel used for something other than a weapon, see the passing mention of Aegon the Conqueror's crown here]
How was Valyrian Steel thought of? Was it considered as precious before the Doom as it is "now"? Did they ever make non-weapons out of it (e.g. forks, jewelry, etc.)?
Valyrian steel was always costly, but it became considerably more so when there was no more Valyria, and the secret of its making were lost.
Mostly it was used for weapons, but there are undoubtedly a few items like those you mention floating about.
How do you feel about "twist endings"? Is this a sign of a weak storyline or effective sometimes?
Depends on the story.