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Baltimore and NYC

Feeling much better now, though I am still sipping tea with lemsip a couple times a day to keep the chest congestion down. The coughing has largely subsided.

Anyway, as I was intending to say before I got the crud, we had a great time in Baltimore and NYC.

Balticon was celebrating its fiftieth birthday this year. Half a century of cons, pretty extraordinary. To mark the occasion, they brought back as many of their previous GOHs as they could (some were unavailable, and some had died), to join me, the current year Guest of Honor. It's always great to see old friends like Connie Willis and Joe Haldeman, and especially friends like John Varley, who I hadn't run into for a couple of decades. Of course, a lot of new friends were on hand as well. Balticon moved back downtown for this year's con, so we were right at the Harborplace, across the street from the Constellation and the dragonboats, and within sight of the Hyatt Regency where the first Baltimore worldcon was held. Brought back a lot of memories.

I did a lot of signing, a kaffeeklatch, a special fund-raising dinner where I changed tables for every course, an interview, the opening ceremonies (crabs and paddleboats and pirates, ph my), and read the Damphair chapter from THE WINDS OF WINTER.

And we ate crabs, and pronounced them good.

(We also ate "the best pizza in Baltimore" and pronounced it less good).

And then it was time for the Acela, and New York City.

New York City was mostly business, as it usually is: meetings with my agents, publishers, editors, and of course HBO. But we found time to fit in a couple of pizza tastings, both in Brooklyn and Manhattan. Also managed to get into the Carnegie Deli, which I fear is falling on hard times. We always try to catch a show when we're in the city. This time it was HAMILTON.

Guys, gals, go see HAMILTON. Everything you've heard is true. It is going to win a bunch of Tony Awards. The performances are incredible. And after the show, we got to sneak backstage and hang some with King George III, Thomas Jefferson, and Alexander Hamilton his own self.

Even that was not the highlight of the New York part of the trip, though. That came a day later, when Parris and I headed over to Bayonne to visit with my sisters and brothers-in-law, my niece and nephews and their partners... and meet, for the first time, my great nephew Brady, born a few weeks earlier. It would appear that I am now a gruncle.


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Jim Nee
Jun. 12th, 2016 11:49 pm (UTC)
Sounds like fun
I am hoping to see Hamilton once it eventually tours and I can see it in Boston (Someday). Glad you liked it, I bet it was great, especially getting to go backstage (always fun).

Also great to hear about your business meetings (as boring as they may be for you at this point).

We are all very excited for TWoW.
Jun. 12th, 2016 11:49 pm (UTC)
Keep drinking that tea
Glad you are feeling better. Keep on rocking. Best wishes from Iceland :)
Jun. 13th, 2016 12:05 am (UTC)
NY Delis
Next time, try Second Avenue Deli. It's like something out of one of Illyrio's feasts.
Jun. 13th, 2016 12:08 am (UTC)
Hey George,

Any exciting or interesting news to share that came from the meetings in NYC? Glad you're feeling better...also that Damphair chapter was literally insane and amazing. Can't wait for TWOW
Jun. 13th, 2016 12:11 am (UTC)
I had a great time at Balticon, the highlight of which was that epic Damphair chapter (thank you!). It was my first reading where you gave us three choices, it was a veritable chaptersmoot!

I'm looking forward to TusCon in November, it'll be the smallest con I've been to... but my real reason for commenting was because of your use of 'gruncle' - one of the best words!
Frank Probst
Jun. 13th, 2016 07:01 pm (UTC)
If there's anyone here who's planning on going to this, you need to buy your ticket NOW. Their website says there are only 61 tickets left, and there won't be any tickets at the door.
(no subject) - mheader - Jun. 13th, 2016 07:47 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - MeereeneseKnot - Jun. 14th, 2016 02:42 am (UTC) - Expand
Jun. 13th, 2016 12:24 am (UTC)
Congrats, sir, on being a Gruncle!
Jun. 13th, 2016 12:31 am (UTC)
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(Deleted comment)
Jun. 13th, 2016 01:00 am (UTC)
This post pleases me of only because you used the word, 'gruncle'. It rocks.

Glad to hear you're in good spirits George!
Keith Russell Dulak
Jun. 13th, 2016 01:18 am (UTC)
Glad youre feeling above crud. Yes, yes, yes, that damphair chapter is mad sickly all around. Also, do you have Patriot fans in your family??
Jun. 13th, 2016 07:22 am (UTC)
No, I have Bradys in my family.
(no subject) - Kristian Westerdahl - Jun. 14th, 2016 04:45 pm (UTC) - Expand
Jun. 13th, 2016 01:43 am (UTC)
Congratulations to you on your joining the agrunculate (for those who don't know, "avunculate" is a real word!), and to your family for Brady's happy arrival!

I have not been to the Carnegie Deli since 1997…it wasn't too bad then, but it's sad to hear it has gone downhill.

It sounds like the rest was lovely, though, so glad to hear it, and keep up the phenomenal work!
Jun. 13th, 2016 02:38 am (UTC)
There's nothing like learning that my favorite author might be a Gravity Falls fan. Congratulations on your family getting bigger!
Kevin Dole Peterson
Jun. 13th, 2016 03:26 am (UTC)
Glad to hear you're doing better GRRM!
Congrats on becoming a gruncle. How is that different from a nuncle, exactly?
Jun. 13th, 2016 03:58 am (UTC)
glad to hear you're on the mend and had pleasant travels gruncle Jorje!!
Jun. 13th, 2016 04:44 am (UTC)
I am so relieved that you are feeling better and that you were able to enjoy some much needed time with family. Times like that can restore the soul.
I want to take this opportunity to say how disappointing GOT (the show) is getting as it goes on, but on a positive note, it is making me even more excited for the future installments of the true tales of your beloved characters and their storylines to which you so lovingly write with such a painstaking and intricate process. Watching the show brought me to your books, but your books have become where my heart truly lies. I never expected to find such a feeling again after reading Tolkien, so thank you....for your research, your imagination, your commitment and your continuity. These are things the show simply cannot replace, especially once you stepped away from the writing process. It has only solidified what a one of a kind writer you really are :)
May you continue to feel better, and thank you for releasing the amazing chapters of TWOW that you have.
Jun. 13th, 2016 06:23 am (UTC)
I am glad you are feeling better, Mr. M, and congratulations on the new addition! :)

HBO is doomed! The best dramas are on every other network now, and the last crown jewel of HBO is ending!!! (even though I actually like Vinyl more than most seem to). This rumor mill being thrown around the internet that GoT only has 13 more episodes after season 6 is very traumatic to contemplate. I wanna cry!

HBO needs something new. They need something that has never been done.

They need... the Thousand Worlds. :)
Jun. 13th, 2016 08:41 am (UTC)
A gruncle!? Even more reason to defeat the white walkers ;)
Sounds like you had fun! Glad to hear! 😄
Jun. 13th, 2016 11:01 am (UTC)
Gruncle, I like that term. When I hopefully become one, I'll make sure to use it. That Damphair Chapter was so good and just makes TWOW seem even more tantalizing. I am looking forward to hearing what happens to Stannis, Davos, Rickon, Big Walder, Big Bucket, Asha, her fave nuncle and the rest. While waiting for it I think some books on Claudius and the Capets will be a useful way to pass the time. I hope your work is going well and I'm glad to hear you're feeling better.
Jun. 13th, 2016 11:53 am (UTC)
High School History teacher here and I have to say I'm very intrigued by Hamilton. I really need to check out this musical as if there is a way I can get more students excited about our Founding Fathers in some way than all the better. So I'm hoping that its at least somewhat historically accurate. In the past I have found that performances/films and the such might be inaccurate but they are great starting points to get people excited about the topic which can lead into real scholarly discussion.
Jun. 13th, 2016 08:24 pm (UTC)
RE: Hamilton
It was based on the bio by Chernow, so while it does take some liberties, it is fairly accurate.

The original cast recording can be found on Spotify, Google Music, etc. Go listen to it. Seriously.
Matt Daniel
Jun. 13th, 2016 12:27 pm (UTC)
Congrats on being a GrNuncle! Bmore and Balticon was a blast! My highlight was youre panels with my best friend and a ton of awesome people i met. Though it was my 1st convention, in true GRRM fashion, it set the bar way high. Plus i got a bunch of new books to read as suvineers! Got suckered into learning the foxtrot (and actually had alot of fun doing it). Went to a great party at my new friends Airbnb and had an rediculously fun time hanging out with all weekend with a bunch of new friends. Thanks to you and everybody else that made it an epic time, of which i soon wont forget. Consider the kidd (me) hooked and looking very forward to Balticon 51, as well as highly thinking about WorldCon 75 in Helsinki. Thanks for opening up yet another whole new awesome world to me
Jun. 13th, 2016 01:11 pm (UTC)
Damphair Posting?
Any chance you will post the Damphair chapter to your website? I think I got the gist but nothing beats getting it from the source.

Congrats on the latest addition to the family!
Rasmus B Wayne
Jun. 13th, 2016 01:54 pm (UTC)
THE Damphair chapter
With the use of the word "the", are you implying that there will only be one Damphair chapter in WINDS?
Jun. 13th, 2016 06:10 pm (UTC)
Re: THE Damphair chapter
Re: THE Damphair chapter - Mike Bruno - Jun. 15th, 2016 02:55 am (UTC) - Expand
Bernhard Vienna
Jun. 13th, 2016 02:12 pm (UTC)
Any news on HBO?
Can you tell us anything about the conversation with HBO : )?
Jun. 13th, 2016 06:10 pm (UTC)
Re: Any news on HBO?
It was pleasant.
Jun. 13th, 2016 02:57 pm (UTC)
So glad to hear you are feeling better congrats on Gruncle status! What's a kafeeklatch?
Jun. 13th, 2016 06:09 pm (UTC)
Most cons, and all worldcons, have them. A small group of fans, usually no more than ten or twelve, get together over coffee and sometimes pastries with their favorite author for an hour, and conversation ensues.

Kaffeeklatches are by sign up only, and some fill up fast, so you want to check them out the moment you arrive at a con.
(no subject) - missmatchedeyes - Jun. 17th, 2016 08:05 pm (UTC) - Expand
Jun. 13th, 2016 03:02 pm (UTC)
I don't see a monkey on your back any more..
Jun. 13th, 2016 06:07 pm (UTC)
Re: Monkey
It's an invisible monkey.
Re: Monkey - thewindswinter - Jun. 14th, 2016 03:07 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: Monkey - Carey Wilson - Jun. 17th, 2016 01:27 am (UTC) - Expand
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George R.R. Martin
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