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A Blast from the Past

I was startled looking at my website today when I saw the hit counter, which tells me the site has had more than 23 million hits since December of 2000.

Of course, I have to put that in perspective. It's really just the same forty-two people coming back again and again to see if DANCE is done yet, isn't it?

(I suspect the Not A Blog actually gets MORE visitors than my main site. A mention here -- of a forthcoming appearance, a book sale, a news item -- seems to generate a lot more response than anything on my Appearances page, my Signed Books page, or my News page).

No point to any of this, just... hey, 23 million hits, that's kinda cool...

No telling how many of you have actually been around since 2000, and how many found my site and/or the Not A Blog just last week. Some of you newcomers, though, might enjoy giving a listen to the series of podcasts I recorded back in 2005, to promote A FEAST FOR CROWS. (I assume you old timers have heard them all already). They're all at


I imagine I will be doing more of these when DANCE WITH DRAGONS comes out. I'll need to think up some more topics. (Maybe "Deadlines, and Why They Should Never Be Missed" would be a good one). Meanwhile, these may entertain and enlighten those of you who haven't heard 'em.

And try not to laugh TOO hard at the part where I say I hope to finish DANCE by the end of the year. I really meant it, honest.


( 44 comments — Leave a comment )
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Mar. 6th, 2010 08:55 am (UTC)
I devoured the 4 books late last year, and have since then been checking for news on more. And the on HBO series. And your wit.

"And try not to laugh TOO hard at the part where I say I hope to finish DANCE by the end of the year. I really meant it, honest."

Hey, as long as you never said which year, you would have been fine. "It will be done by the end of the year." This year, next year, 2020, whenever. It will be done.

I don't really mind the waiting: there's not much point. If the book came out tomorrow, I'd probably read it in a couple of days and then I'd be waiting again for the next one.

It'll come when it comes. :)
Mar. 6th, 2010 09:28 am (UTC)
for a lot of us now is most important the man that the writer and this section has helped to this.
Mar. 6th, 2010 09:55 am (UTC)
George, raw web hits aren't very useful -- they include the robots from google, bing, yahoo, et al, who crawl your site regularly.

On the other hand? If you're getting proper web stats, as opposed to just a hit counter, you might want to look at the daily visitors figure, or graph daily visitors over time. (And if you've got a webmaster, get them to do some A/B profiling and search engine optimization!)
Mar. 6th, 2010 10:05 am (UTC)
internet users and the pressure they put on fans,lol.
Mar. 6th, 2010 12:14 pm (UTC)
It was 2005 when I became a fan. I was in need of books to read so headed to our charity shop. AGOT and ACOK were there, one for 2.50 GBP and 3.50 GBP respectively. I had never heard of the series before but I figured, that it was not too pricey to give a chance. I normally whizz through books that I enjoy and I found that i was reading about 3 chapters an hour for AGOT which I saw as slow. It wasn't until I hit the Bran incident, that I realised how much I was enjoying it, and after that chapter I was hooked. I got the Third off amazon and was lucky enough that when I finished it, Feast was launched so headed to Glasgow for a signed copy.

I have since introduced 4 people to Westeros. I got the bonus benefit of a link on your website to a webzine and found Tad Williams' Memory Sword and Thorn Trilogy. Another author I had never heard of before but when it came to me moving to Ireland, I only kept those two sets of books, the rest were put in recirculation.

23 Million is not completely understandable. How does it compare to books sold? Even if the 8K fans on LJ checked one a week for 3 years, that is 1.2 million. I find that I rarely check the website now as more information is given here, as well as your insights and such like.
Mar. 6th, 2010 12:32 pm (UTC)
new content
Your blog has new content all the time and your main site is relatively static. So more people come here.

I read your books for the first time in 2000.

Mar. 6th, 2010 01:07 pm (UTC)
Honestly, I first stumbled upon your not a blog, through your website to check about ADWD. I stayed though, because your posts are interesting, often amusing and it annoys me as well to see the trolls just demand the book. I also found names of authors I had never read, through your blog. I really don't care how long the book takes. It takes as long as it needs to for it to be right. I have enjoy rereading the other books in the series, plus books from many other authors. Take as long as you need! Your books are rich in detail, and I cannot imagine the level of work it takes to create such lands, worlds and people in it as you do.
Mar. 6th, 2010 06:04 pm (UTC)
I don't care if Dance doesn't come out until next year. I love the books, and I'll buy them when they're out.

That said, wow . . . :D The high hit rate is definitely an ego-boost, I'm sure.
Mar. 6th, 2010 07:27 pm (UTC)
I created this account strictly to say one thing.

I am in the midst of reading the series through for the nth time, and I felt that I needed to add my voice.

This is quite possibly the best fantasy series I have ever read. Period. I love everything about the way it is written, the characters, the scenery, the thrilling battles, and the emotional confessions that are strewn throughout. I would say that I cannot wait until the DANCE arrives, but I do not want to add to the pressure. Let me say that I look forward with great excitement to the arrival of the DANCE, and the following novels. Even if they each take another 5 years.

I just wanted to give you my personal thanks for creating such a wonderful world, and allowing me to share in it.
Mar. 6th, 2010 08:26 pm (UTC)
And try not to laugh TOO hard at the part where I say I hope to finish DANCE by the end of the year.

Did you say *what* year?
Mar. 6th, 2010 09:44 pm (UTC)
I've been following this blog for years and I occasionally check the site for new chapters and book recommendations, but I had never found the podcasts.

Re. the advice to write some short stories ... erm ... could you perhaps tell the plotbunnies I took in to not bring their extended family, friends and their extended family, and turn trilogy on me? My muse is useless; he only laughs when the blasted critters scamper all over the place. :)

I did write some short stories once I realised that my excursions into fiction writing (I come from an academic non fiction background) were more than just a whim and there might be a chance to make something out of that sucky almost-novel I had scrambled together - if I could figure out how to really write. Two of those were summaries of novels, one a lovely little thing that fit nowhere, one I sold, and the other four were either genres I didn't really want to write or were not quite there. At that time the Roman plotbunnies kept coming in and I got an idea how to save that novel, but I never regretted having spent my time with those stories; they were a good way to play with styles, POVs, genres and all that.

Re. deadlines. You think anyone would notice if we ereased that word from the dictionary? :)
Mar. 7th, 2010 12:16 am (UTC)
Relatively new fan weighing in here. When I started to talk of reading the Song of Ice and Fire series, a friend pointed me in the direction here, and I'm quite delighted to get a peek into the thoughts of you, the author. As an aspiring writer myself, reading your words here gives me inspiration.
Mar. 7th, 2010 01:25 am (UTC)
I remember those! I might have to go relisten to them. :)
Mar. 7th, 2010 05:26 am (UTC)
hey if you ever miss podcasting, it's the podcast of ice and fire's ultimate lifetime wish to have you as a guest on our show!
Mar. 7th, 2010 09:35 am (UTC)
About the 23 million hits.
GRRM, there's something about your website that tethers itself to my ankle. After "Feast" I kept checking back for updates while my bimonthly tabletop gaming group switched from Dungeons and Dragons to the "Game of Thrones" RPG. Then, I'd check for updates on the RPG. Then, naturally, I was checking for updates on the Guardians of Order situation. Then you had to go and start the rumbling about the TV Series. Somewhere in between there I checked back up more and found all of your incoming work on Wild Cards.

I believe it was Robert DeNiro that said: "Just when I was out, they pull me back in."

That website been a never ending stream of updates. In all honesty, I find that rather refreshing. You definitely have been moving a lot of work into consumer hands and there's always something there to look at.

As for DANCE? Take your time. I'm really anxious to see what you came up with for the direction you're taking the Stark family. Time isn't going to affect the fact that my brain's going to DEVOUR that book.
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( 44 comments — Leave a comment )


George R.R. Martin
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