In an interview with The Observer, Martin talks about the ending of the book series:
I haven’t written the ending yet, so I don’t know, but no. That’s certainly not my intent. I’ve said before that the tone of the ending that I’m going for is bittersweet. I mean, it’s no secret that Tolkien has been a huge influence on me, and I love the way he ended Lord of the Rings. It ends with victory, but it’s a bittersweet victory. Frodo is never whole again, and he goes away to the Undying Lands, and the other people live their lives. And the scouring of the Shire—brilliant piece of work, which I didn’t understand when I was 13 years old: “Why is this here? The story’s over?” But every time I read it I understand the brilliance of that segment more and more. All I can say is that’s the kind of tone I will be aiming for. Whether I achieve it or not, that will be up to people like you and my readers to judge.
Martin confirms he has been influenced by Grateful Dead, including naming Weirwood trees after Bob Weir.
My wife, Paris, is perhaps more of a fan of the Grateful Dead than I am…I have Grateful Dead lyrics rattling around in my head all the time. Ripple’ is one of my favorite songs of all time… [quoting the song] ‘There is a road, no simple highway.’
At the red carpet premiere of Season 5 of Game of Thrones, Martin says he will continue to use Wordstar 4.0, the 1980s-era word processor, saying he doesn’t need spellcheck features of modern word processors:
Until they come up with something better, which they haven’t…Don’t help me. I’ve been writing for a long time…And don’t change my spelling….I don’t need things underlined in red, like ‘Targaryen. I know how to spell ‘Targaryen.’ Don’t tell me it’s misspelled.
Martin will appear with Democratic Sen. Tom Udall (NM) at a fundraiser on Oct. 7, where one winner and a guest will receive a round trip to Martin’s Jean Cocteau Cinema. The promotion period runs until 11:59 on Sept. 23. Fans can pay $2,600 to have dinner with Martin and Sen. Udall or $1,000 to meet and take photos with the pair. General admission is $250 for the event, which will involve a discussion on New Mexico politics and other issues. Republican Allen Weh, who is running against Sen. Udall:
I don’t even know who that guy is. I never heard of those books, and I haven’t seen that TV show.
The author accepts the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge after being nominated by three people including Neil Gaiman. To represent the three separate challenges, Martin has two buckets of ice water poured on him and then takes the plunge into a pool.
Martin organizes a fundraising contest to benefit the Wild Spirit Wolf Sanctuary and the Food Depot, both located in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Those who make a donation are entered into a drawing for the chance to spend a day with Martin discussing his books, the wolf sanctuary, and more. Two donors who contributed $20,000 will have characters named after them in one of his upcoming books.
Martin guests on the Conan and chats with O’Brien about differences between the deaths in the Games of Thrones books and the TV show, as well as President Obama’s reference to the hit show during the White House Correspondents’ Dinner. He also reveals his reluctance to include dragons in his stories.
I think magic has to be handled very carefully in fantasy. Phyllis was right. You need some magic in a fantasy, but too much magic is like too much salt in the stew. All you can taste is the salt and anything can happen.
In an interview with Conan O’Brien, Martin reveals that he writes his fantasy novels not on a modern computer, but using a WordStar 4.0 word processor, free of spell check, internet connectivity, and any other distractions. The initial WordStar software dates back to the 1970’s:
Well, I actually like it. It does everything I want a word processing program to do, and it doesn’t do anything else. I don’t want any help. I hate some of these modern systems where you type a lower case letter and it becomes a capital. I don’t want a capital!
Martin responds to fans who are disturbed by a violent sex scene in GOT Season 4 Episode 3 Breaker of Chains. The scene differs from its portrayal in the book, closely resembling rape on screen:
On the TV show, the camera is necessarily external. You don’t know what anyone is thinking or feeling, just what they are saying and doing… The scene was always intended to be disturbing… but I do regret if it has disturbed people for the wrong reasons.
Martin addresses fan reactions to a scene in season four, episode three that appears to depict the rape of Queen Regent Cersei Lannister, played by Lena Headey, by her twin brother Jaime Lannister, played by Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, at their son’s funeral. The scene translated differently onscreen:
The whole dynamic is different in the show … I was writing the scene from Jaime’s POV, so the reader is inside his head, hearing his thoughts. On the TV show, the camera is necessarily external. You don’t know what anyone is thinking or feeling, just what they are saying and doing. If the show had retained some of Cersei’s dialogue from the books, it might have left a somewhat different impression — but that dialogue was very much shaped by the circumstances of the books, delivered by a woman who is seeing her lover again for the first time after a long while apart during which she feared he was dead. I am not sure it would have worked with the new timeline.
While the scene was confronting, it was not meant to depict rape:
That’s really all I can say on this issue. The scene was always intended to be disturbing… but I do regret if it has disturbed people for the wrong reasons.
The finalists for this year’s Hugo Awards are announced. The Season 3 episode, The Rains of Castamere, is nominated for Best Dramatic Presentation (Short Form). Martin comments on the nomination:
The nomination is just the latest confirmation that David, Dan, T’Other David, Richard Madden, Oona Chaplin, Michelle Fairley, and the rest of our cast and crew did an amazing job on this one, creating a moment that will live in the annals of television for a long, long time. No novelist has ever been more fortunate in the people who came forward to translate his work from the page to the screen.
On his blog, Martin reveals a list of the show’s credits and current cast members as released by HBO. The announcement also mentions that the first season will consist of 10 episodes with production based in Belfast, Ireland.
This should give you plenty to chew on for a few days … while casting continues and we nail down a few more parts. Lots more still to come, including Osha, Shae, and Twyin.
HBO announces it has acquired the rights to George R.R. Martin’s series of novels, A Song of Fire & Ice. The TV series will be written and produced by David Benioff and D.B. Weiss and will be filmed in Europe or New Zealand. The two will write each episode together save one, which will be scripted by the novel’s author. The series will begin with the first book, A Game of Thrones, with the intention of each novel to inspire a seasons worth of episodes.
They tried for 50 years to make Lord of the Rings as one movie before Peter Jackson found success making three. My books are bigger and more complicated, and would require 18 movies. Otherwise, you’d have to choose one or two characters.