When George was here during the promotion tour for A Dance with Dragons I got to ask him a question as well. Knowing that he is not going to reveal any great spoilers and not wanting my answer to be "KEEP READING," I chose a rather obscure topic that interests me. I wanted to know something about Ser Barristan the Bold. Selmy is a walking contradiction. He is portrayed as a man of impeccable honor and tremendous courage. Yet he admits he may deserve a "traitor's death." When he accepts Robert's offer to join his Kingsguard, he abandons his duty to Viserys, then a child in need of his protection and knowledge. This choice has always fascinated me. In particular, I wanted to know if Ser Barristan makes his decision before or after he finds out that Hightower, Dayne, and Whent are dead. Does he do so knowing he is the only loyal Kingsguard alive - Jaime having quite spectacularly killed the King he was sworn to protect. I'm not sure knowing he is alone makes his decision to go over to Robert better or worse, but it helps me in understanding the man's thinking. Anyway, that's the question I asked him many years ago and George's answer was not "keep reading" but an equally frustrating "that's interesting. I'd have to think on that." An answer that is no answer.
So while waiting in line, I thought what should I ask this time? After considering a question about the timing of different views of the comet (Maester Luwin's and Daenerys's which I have long thought take place at the same time) I decided to ask my original question on Ser Barristan again. After all, George has had a few years to think on it. Well he did answer it. Kinda. Sorta. When I asked if Selmy knew of the deaths of the Kingsguard Trio when he decided to go over to Robert, his response was "Yes, .... quite probably. He was hurt and recovering so there is enough time for him to know." Not quite the clear answer I was looking for, but a great improvement over the "I have to think on that" response. Given the glacial pace in which I have been asking this question, I'm quite sure that I will get my definitive, clear answer at Worldcon 2022.
[Note: This is a report of the Q&A following an interview with John Picacio ahead of Worldcon, provided by @clintw on Twitter.]
A thread by Clint of the Laughing Tree
George says he’s working on it.
Prequel news is that there are still 5 theoretically the works. Long Night is greenlit for a pilot, but they’re going to block out the whole season. Others are based on “chunks of Fire and Blood” and even “a single sentence from WOIAF”. Fire and Blood will have about 75 pages of art. He says his publishers wanted it first bc some of the prequels were based on it. He says he’ll finish Vol II “after he’s done with the main series.”
We have reached the Wild Cards portion of the evening
One other interesting-ish tidbit is that Picacio had a conversation with GRRM before the show started and asked him if it was possible that the show might pass him and George said it was possible back then. George announces(?) that they’re doing a Wild Cards television show
Says he has “no creative control” on Nightflyers
BREAKING: George says “getting more money... is good”.
Tough break for the socialist wing of the ASOIAF fandom. Intermission almost over. Q&A section shortly.
First Q re Oberyn’s 4th child Loraiza Martell. Is that her mom’s name?
A: haven’t given it a lot of thought?
Q: who will replace Roy Dotrice on the TWOW audiobook. What about a full cast dramatized book?
A: he has had conversations about radioplay style books. Says he doesn’t have control over ASOIAF audiobook decisions. Basically defers. He doesn’t have the subsidiary rights over the audiobooks.
Q: if you did have a child what would you name him or her?
A: “I don’t know... probably Not Daenerys”
Q: what was inspiration behind Davos Seaworth?
A: don’t know in particular. Needed Stannis POV. Started with Cressen, but he died. Didn’t want Stannis as POV.
Q from Ashaya of @WesterosHistory did Bloodraven take Dark Sister to the Wall?
A: Yes (!!)
Q: Do you spend more time on worldbuilding, plot, or character development? And how does that perspective shift over time.
A: I’m terrible at the second part of that question. Then forgets his original 3 book titles he was going to sell in the original series.