Our friends at the Shire Post Mint, who are the only licensed purveyor of coins based on A Song of Ice and Fire, have launched their first ever “12 Days of Giving” event. It began on the 21st but will run through December 2nd. From their enormous catalog of coins and jewelry from ASoIaF as well as other fantasy settings (particularly licensed coins based on The Lord of the Rings), they’ve put together a special collection where many of the items are discounted by as much as 50%... and with the special promotional code, “FOREYULE2020”, you’ll get an additional 25% off the lowest-priced item in your cart.
Best of all, it’s for a good cause, as for every item you purchase $1 will go to No Kid Hungry, a charity devoted to helping make sure that children don’t go hungry by extending access to meals at school and after school, as well as providing education, advocacy, and research to reduce child nutritional deficits in the United States.
Lots of great ASoIaF designs. The Tywin Lannister “Half-dragon” design is particularly interesting, and the coin of the Faceless Men is particularly popular.
This month has had its joys and its sorrows, and we’re not even half way through. In the latter column, we must add the very sad news of the passing of Kay McCauley, long-time agent to George R.R. Martin and a host of other writers. George has posted a touching remembrance of the “queen of agents” who did so much to represent his work as part of, and then head, of the agency that her late brother Kirby McCauley founded.
George mentions in passing her parties for the Wild Cards authors, and indeed, it was at one of these—at the swanky Chateau Marmont, during the 2006 Worldcon in Anahiem where we signed the contracts for The World of Ice and Fire—that we first met her. She had negotiated the contract for the book, and had helped us out with various questions including who to talk to at Random House’s royalties department to sort out a problem, and advising us on other matters. She was extremely kind and welcoming to two neophytes such as ourselves, and over the years she always found the time to send a congratulations our way whenever Random House let us know of some new milestone with the book, whether a placement on a bestseller list or a new printing.
She will be much missed.
Over at his “Not a Blog”, George R.R. Martin has posted a new update on various topics, including HBO’s House of the Dragon as well as where he’s at with the greatly-anticipated The Winds of Winter. Along the way, he gives some hints about what he’s been working on on the “big, big book”:
“Of late I have been spending a lot of time with the Lannisters. Cersei and Tyrion in particular. I’ve also paid a visit to Dorne, and dropped in to Oldtown a time or three. In addition to turning out new chapters, I’ve been revising some old ones (some very old)… including, yes, some stuff I read at cons ages ago, or even posted online as samples. I tweak stuff constantly, and sometimes go beyond tweaking, moving things around, combining chapters, breaking chapters in two, reordering stuff.”
(The newly-released A Storm of Swords (affiliate link) anniversary edition, featuring new illustrations from Gary Gianni.)
In one of the first interviews with House of the Dragon showrunner Ryan Condal since HBO’s straight-to-series order was announced, Beyond the Trailer‘s Grace Randolph manages to draw out a few details about the show and Condal’s relationship to the novels and George R.R. Martin in the course of discussing his passion (and that of fellow guest, writer and Veep showrunner David Mandel) for collecting Hollywood memorabila.
Besides revealing himself to be a very knowledgeable collector (for example, he shares the fact that there were only two hats used for Indiana Jones in Raiders of the Lost Ark), he reveals a handful of things about the show:
It’s an entertaining interview with both writers/showrunners, with some fun anecdotes and some very neat examples of memorabilia (lets just say both Condal and Mandel are fans of certain iconic Lucasfilm movies). Well-worth watching the whole thing! The interview promotes Mandel’s and Condal’s new podcast, The Stuff that Dreams are Made Of, which is focused on collecting props. The first two episodes released yesterday, and can be found at all the major podcast sources.
Once again, stellar work from the Folio Society. Fans of George R.R. Martin, and bibliophiles generally, should appreciate these. Thanks to the Folio Society, we also have two images to share from the two-volume A Storm of Swords which we’ll include with the press release below!
Robb Stark preparing to execute Lord Karstark in the godswood of Riverrun.
(Illustration © Jonathan Burton 2020 from The Folio Society edition of George R. R. Martin’s A Storm of Swords, exclusively available at foliosociety.com)
UK Production News, a database for film productions in the UK which has proven to be a reliable source of information, has updated as of yesterday with information concerning the production of House of the Dragon, which reveald yesterday its first lead casting. First reported by Redanian Intelligence, a website focused primarily on The Witcher but which has kept a close eye on other genre productions, the database was updated to show two things: that the main production hub would be Warner Bros. Leavesden Studio complex and that plans now seem to begin filming in late 2020.
Redanian Intelligence‘s report shows the full listing of information from the database as of yesterday, but a visit today shows that it was updated with one more piece of information, that the first season is 10 episodes, which was reported back in July when the straight-to-series order was announced. So, no apparent change there.
From EW’s James Hibberd (whose Fire Cannot Kill a Dragon [paid link] is now out), HBO has revealed the first actor cast in next year’s House of the Dragon: Englsh actor Paddy Considine, known for a variety of roles including Edgar Wright comedies and, most recently, HBO’s The Outsider. According to the report, he has been cast to play King Viserys I Targaryen.
https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)” href=“https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Paddy_Considine_2011_(cropped).jpg”>CC BY-SA from the Cambridge Film Festival
Continuing the series of guides to various regions of Westeros, made in collaboration with Random House, we’re back with a new one: the Iron Islands. We draw from The World of Ice and Fire, of course, but you’ll see images and details drawn from The Lands of Ice and Fire map collection and the A Feast of Ice and Fire cookbook. Enjoy the video below:
Deadline has reported on an interview with Casey Bloys, the president of HBO, following HBO’s strong showing at the 2020 Emmys. Towards the end of the article, Deadline reports:
On October 6th, Asmodee Digital and Dire Wolf Digital‘s A Game of Thrones: The Board Game - Digital Edition will launch, but until then Asmodee has offered a substantial discount of 20% for those who pre-order the game on Steam.
Based on the well-regarded, popular board game from Fantasy Flight Games, the game will support single-player (with up to five AI opponents) as well as full multi-player with up to six players. A new trailer has been released for the game, showing a deal of gameplay, which you can see below.
We’ve reported previously that James Hibberd will be publishing an in-depth oral history of Game of Thrones—filled with new interviews and never-before-heard anecdotes from behind the scenes—titled Fire Cannot Kill a Dragon. Over at EW, a lengthy excerpt has been posted sharing a wide-array of comments from producers (Benioff and Weiss first and foremost, as well as Bryan Cogman), actors (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Lena Headey, Jason Momoa, Mark Addy, Iain Glen), and executives (most notable Michael Lombardo and Richard Plepler) concerning the original pilot which was heavily reshot by Tim van Patten, including recasting of several key roles. There’s some decidedly new details just in this short excerpt, which bodes well for the rest of the book’s insights. Below are a couple of quotes from GRRM himself that are interesting.
According to the BBC, borough councils in County Down, Northern Ireland, have given permission for the Linen Mill Studios Game of Thrones tour experience which was first announced in April. It seems the global pandemic has delayed plans, as the original notion had been to open over the Spring in 2020, which obviously did not happen. The tour will essentially be a permanent exhibition of sets, props, and costumes with interactive elements at the studios that were used for some of the filming of the production (most notably one or more ship sets were made on site).
Last week, it was reported that George R.R. Martin has filed suit in the Los Angeles Superior Court against Blackstone Manor, LLC, the company that holds the rights to producing “The Skin Trade”, his award-winning 1988 horror novella. According to reports of the suit, it’s alleged that on the day before its option lapsed, Blackstone Manor threw together a skeleton crew and filmed “a few scenes” to try and claim rights to “The Skin Trade” in perpetuity, an act which Martin’s lawyers suggest is tantamount to an “artifice”, a “token production” insufficient to retain the rights.
The second in the series of travelogue videos we’ve made in collaboration with Random House—you can see the first here if you missed it—is now out! Leaving the far North, Linda and I now discuss the royal city of King’s Landing, with some notes on notable architecture and cuisine!
Three more to come in the coming weeks!
George R.R. Martin has posted a new entry to his Not a Blog, titled “Back in Westeros”, which discusses the self-imposed isolation he’s been in for much of the year. In a mountain cabin somewhere in the mountains of New Mexico, George has been making progress on The Winds of Winter, and reflects on how the periods in his career where he’s been the most isolated have also been among his most productive.
Towards the end, he gets a little more specific about what he has been working on lately in terms of point of view characters, and one of the one he names is a bit of new information as their presence as a POV had not been confirmed until now.
(No, this is not actually his cabin!)