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Talking About the Dance

Kong is dead. That is to say, A DANCE WITH DRAGONS is complete, and moving inexorably towards its July 12 publication date.

Yes, I know. Old news. I've announced that before. And since finally completing A DANCE WITH DRAGONS some weeks ago, and announcing it here, I have been working on... drum roll, please... A DANCE WITH DRAGONS!

That's the way it goes with books. You finish, and breathe a sigh of relief... and then you get back to work. There's always more to be done. Your editor reads it and gives you notes. You make revisions, corrections. A copyeditor goes over the text, finds errors, points out contradictions and inconsistencies, raises queries. You fix some, stet others. Friends and fans gulp down the book, and find mistakes your editors, copyeditors, and proofreaders all missed. You fix those too, as time allows. Then there's the appendix to prepare. And then the appendix needs to be edited, proofread, corrected... and on and on it goes...

But now even that is behind me. Copyediting, appendix, proofs, corrections, all that stuff. The book tour has been planned (a few details yet to be worked out), the marketing plans are in place... and I can finally say that Kong is not just merely dead, but really most sincerely dead.

Now that the dust is settling at last, I thought I'd take a deep breath and look back at what a long strange trip this has been. If the process interests you, read on. But beware -- past this point, there may be some SPOILERS lurking amidst my discussion. Read on at your own peril.

Read more...Collapse )


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May. 20th, 2011 02:29 pm (UTC)
Thank You
Thank you for being so forthcoming about the Dance process. As an avid reader and huge fan, it is really exciting to hear how it all came together. I have no doubt that Dance will have been worth the wait! And congratulations to you, it must be a wonderful feeling.

May. 20th, 2011 02:35 pm (UTC)
Thanks for the insight!
Its very interesting to see how DANCE progressed and I trust that you made some wise decisions.
Ilea Ulery
May. 20th, 2011 02:42 pm (UTC)
I am so happy your done with Kong, and content with how it turned out. We have all been waiting a long time for this novel, and I'm sure you've done an amazing job! Thanks for all of your hard work, I'm sure dealing with jerks for fans wasn't easy.
May. 20th, 2011 02:44 pm (UTC)
Hi! I'm fairly new to A Song of Ice and Fire, but I wanted to say that from book 1 I put you, as a writer, and your story, up there right next to the Lord of the Rings. I can't think of a better way to express how highly I rate your work.

Thanks for sharing with us the process you went through while writing these books. Sometimes, we fans, wonder why is taking so long for the next book to come out, and here is the answer: it is extremely complicated to write a good book and writers (no matter how good) are only human.

Best of luck!
May. 20th, 2011 02:49 pm (UTC)
..I remember reading the last book of 'Dragonbone Chair' and seeing it referred as 'the book that ate my life'..

I belive you defintely understand that.

I only started reading the books a week and a half ago, finished Feast last night. *grins*

I am SO looking forward to 'Dance' now. Reading your blog is fantastic, speaking as an artist who discusses her work more or less the same way...thank you for blogging your thoughts this way.

...and thank you for the fantastic, epic journey we've all been on so far...
May. 20th, 2011 02:49 pm (UTC)
Thank you
I wanted to thank you for sharing these process notes, even if I'm not going to read them myself till I've finished the book. (I'm squinting so I don't see the top of the page while I type this.) We aspiring writers and dedicated readers are grateful you took the time to share these thoughts with us!
RedMan Man Man
May. 20th, 2011 02:52 pm (UTC)
You and the series.
Greetings from Spain Mr. Martin,

Myself and some friends have been wondering some things about you and the HBO series those last weeks...
Are you feeling any pressure for the publication of the next book? I don't mean fan neither hbo pressure, I mean personal and professional pressure, since the series are giving a huge push to your novels...
Considering the fact that HBO "probly"(if the series continue going on) will be releasing one season per book and per year... you 've got 4-5 years to write the manuscript of the Winds of Winter so the guys at hbo can start the script for the series... It seems that you'll need to rush it.

If I were you I would feel in pain. Whatever you feel, please continue writting as good as you had been.

In my humble opinion the series are giving you an awesome box of fans. And... I think that you'll get more books sale as soon as 1st season ends...(there is people that is buying GOT thanks the series.. but there is still people who is just watching the series and skiping the book) people will be anxious and will get The clash.
Anyway, and what really matter, by the end you'll be having a lot of new fans angry and anxious. Those are really good news for the old fans... I wish you the best of the best.

Please... excuse me for my terrible english... I'm trying to improve while reading your books in English... Kindle does miracles while learning it.


May. 20th, 2011 03:00 pm (UTC)
Thank you for the insight into the guts and gears of the creative process. I hope to read that masters thesis some day.
Fergus O'Shea
May. 20th, 2011 03:02 pm (UTC)
Does it not freak you out, George, when you spend 5 years writing something and it only takes, like, a few days to read through the whole thing!?
May. 20th, 2011 03:03 pm (UTC)
Congratulations!!! You are a Homer of our days!!!
May. 20th, 2011 03:07 pm (UTC)
Thanks for all the hard work! =D
May. 20th, 2011 03:16 pm (UTC)
I want to be that student, studying all those old manuscripts. I want to write my own book on how a master writes. May I?
May. 20th, 2011 03:24 pm (UTC)
Great stuff - love these kinds of posts even though they are completely unnecessary. I'm also excited that Roy will be reading lots of Tyrion for this book, any idea how long it takes for the audiobook to be recorded and released?
May. 20th, 2011 03:29 pm (UTC)
Congrats for finally having finished the book, and thanks for sharing all your thoughts and processes here. For me, the timing of this book works perfectly, because I'm a newer fan (just discovered the series last year when I heard about the HBO show) and I just finished book 4. So the timing couldn't be better, in my eyes -- I get to read a new ASOIAF book along with the rest of the world! :)
May. 20th, 2011 03:36 pm (UTC)
Damn fine story. I wonder if you'd released Dance years ago, if the HBO series would have still been made or if someone like Starz or Showtime would have purchased it or if anyone would have wanted it at all.
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George R.R. Martin
George R. R. Martin

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