George R.R. Martin answers questions from his fans

The current King of fantasy writing, George R.R. Martin, turned Town Hall Seattle into his own mini Westeros on Tuesday evening. Martin is the author of the wildly popular Song of Ice and Fire series which has reached multiple bestseller lists and spawned the epic HBO series Game of Thrones. Fans were lined up (thankfully none were in costume) early Tuesday evening and the creator of the Starks and Lannisters did not disappoint. 

George R.R. Martin answers questions from his fans

Martin strolled out to the podium to a rousing ovation and began to read two chapters from The Winds of Winter, the upcoming sixth installment to his series. The crowd listened with a hushed excitement as they were getting a sneak peek at the events that took place, as Martin said “about five minutes after the end of A Dance With Dragons”. He read them with the great enthusiasm of an expert story teller which captivated the fans that made up his realm for the evening. 

Afterwards he promised that he would go home and continue to work on the book but offered no promises as to when it would be finished and in the hands of the fans. 

He then took questions from the audience which revealed the most enlightening and entertaining moments of the evening. Several fans tried to get Martin to answer questions they had about the future of some of their favorite characters. Martin was too savvy to give up that precious information and would smile and say “you’ll have to read the book”. 

During the whole Q&A period he was charming and engaging. He even answered a question from a young woman, which bordered on being inappropriate, about his mortality and what his plans were if he died before finishing his series. After a long pause he jokingly threatened to have the young lady’s head put on a spike in front of the stage and then said that if he were to perish earlier than he thinks he will “have bigger problems to worry about than finishing the series”. His answer brought laughter from the audience. 

Martin also discussed an interesting aspect about American “prudery” regarding the adult content of his stories. He says that he gets a consistent stream of letters, from Americans, complaining about the sex in his books. But, as Martin pointed out, nobody ever complains about the detailed and graphic violence. This seems to perplex Martin as he pointed out that “More pleasure comes from a penis entering a vagina than an axe entering a skull”. 

He was also asked about his involvement and thoughts of the HBO series his books have spawned. Martin pointed out that he is an executive producer for the show and writes one episode a season. He said that he loves some of the extra scenes that being on TV has allowed them to create, giving fans different views of his characters. He mentioned the casting as being terrific and pointed out that Jack Gleeson, who plays the vile King Joffrey, is one of the nicest kids around who now gets spit at on the streets. 

The rest of the night he answered questions about his writing process (he lets the characters lead him down the path), his love of New York football and he seemed genuinely touched as two women presented him with dragon egg brooches they had hand crafted. When he was finished he simply thanked the crowd and urged them to “keep reading” before leaving the stage to a standing ovation. 

In the Town Hall lobby fans crowded a table selling autographed copies of his various books, calendars and posters. Everyone left happy and surely were headed to their favorite inn to partake in some Dornish Ale.

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