George R.R. Martin

Some people would call what George does "cheating". He prefers to think of it as "winning by the means at hand".

By the age of 28, George had won himself the Hugo Award for Best Novella for his work A Song of Lya; five years later, he took home the Hugo Award for Best Novelette and Nebula Award for Best Novelette for a single piece: Sandkings. And that year, 1980, he also won the Hugo Award for Best Short Story - that one was for Way of Cross and Dragon. Since then, he's compiled 4 Hugos, 2 Nebulas, 1 World Fantasy Award, 1 Stoker Award, 11 Locus Awards, 1 Geffen, 5 Ignotus Awards, 1 Seiun, 3 AnLab Polls, 2 SF Site Polls, 1 Balrog and 1 Science Fiction Chronicle Reader Award. As a writer of fantasy, horror, sci-fi and even super-hero fiction, GRRM has a very impressive bibliography, from his stint on The New Twilight Zone to kids books.

And, of course, his most popular work - A Song of Ice and Fire - is being adapted to the screen by HBO as A Game of Thrones; the pilot has been completed.

He's been applauded up and down the cultural landscape for his cynical, dark and melancholy writing; as reviewer T. M. Wagner writes, "Let it never be said [that] Martin doesn't share Shakespeare's fondness for the senselessly tragic."

Not bad for a functional illiterate.

See, the thing is that there are plenty of ways to write. The aforementioned Shakespeare used a quill pen. Some people use a type-writer. Some folks have gotten on board the word processor craze. And then there are the folks who speak into a Dictaphone and have a secretary type up their work, then pay a hefty sum to an editor to "clean up" the work. And then there's George, who mumbles sorrows and queries in front of a leather-wrapped human head that grins like a combination of a Guy Fawkes mask and Sponge Bob, and it vomits out stained sheets of toilet paper scrawled with bloody writing. As anyone can tell you, the writing is really damn good.

As he puts it, he's writing "with his soul" - rather than with a pen. A more pure form of discourse, perhaps. Or perhaps a convenient lie. Either way, it works.

George is, perhaps, the most famous beneficiary of the crasher community, and he's what all the little boys and girls raiding the Big Bad want to be when they grow up: respected, powerful, rich, mysterious, and beloved.

Of course, there's the sticky question of why it's taking so long for those next books to come out. Because the head on the desk … it gets hungry and tired and cranky sometimes. And it has to be kept fed.

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License