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A Partner for the Dance

Hiya, kids, hiya, hiya, hiya.

I have some good news for all of you who have been waiting for A DANCE WITH DRAGONS.

It's no secret that I've struggled with this one, that the writing has been going slowly, that I've missed several deadlines. Meanwhile, I've delivered several Wild Cards books (ably assisted by Melinda M. Snodgrass) and co-edited a couple of major original anthologies with Gardner Dozois. And then there was HUNTER'S RUN, the three-way novel that I did with Dozois and Daniel Abraham. None of those were solo projects, of course. I had help with every one, a partner.

I have finally come to the conclusion that I need a partner for the DANCE as well, a collaborator to help me finish the remaining books in A SONG OF ICE AND FIRE.

Once I reached that realization, there could be only one possible choice -- my oldest friend in this field, winner of the Nebula and the World Fantasy Award, multiple Hugo loser, the brilliant, irascible, and ever-stylish Howard Waldrop.

H'ard and I have worked together before, of course. He was part of my Wild Cards series since the beginning, writing the very first story for the very first book, "Thirty Minutes Over Broadway" (JETBOY LIVES!), and he intends to write the last Wild Cards story too, once we decide to wrap up the series. But our collaborative efforts go back decades beyond that. Howard and I first began to correspond in 1963, when we were both in high school and John F. Kennedy was in the White House, but we did not actually meet until 1972, at a convention in Kansas City, Missouri. We took an immediate liking to each other, and sat down at once to write the SF adventure classic that would ultimately be known as "Men of Greywater Station." I came up with the universe, the planet Greywater, the sentient fungus, and characters named Delvecchio and Granowicz. H'ard contributed the military expertise (he was just out of the army), and characters named Otis and Eldon. (Neither of us remembered to put girls in the story, unfortunately, which was kind of odd when you think on it, since we started writing it in a Playboy Club).

Now, some of you familiar with the Waldrop oevre may object, and argue that H'ard doesn't write epic fantasy. Tush, tush. You know nothing! Truth be told, Howard was writing epic fantasy long before I was. When the two of us were still in high school, contributing text stories to the dittoed comic fanzines of the day, I was doing superhero stories in prose, but Howard was writing great stuff about musketeers, gladiators, and a whole SERIES of stories about a Sword & Sorcery hero known only as the Wanderer, whose exploits were recorded in the sacred tomes known as the Chronicles of Chim-Wazle (okay, okay, I stole that name for my Jack Vance story, don't tell Howard). He's no stranger to swords, not at all.

Howard is as excited as a one-legged man at an ass-kicking contest at the prospect of us working together again, and has promised to jump right into A DANCE WITH DRAGONS and wrap it all up in a month or two, knocking out the remaining chapters with the same speed with which he's knocked out his own novels, THE MOON WORLD and I, JOHN MANDEVILLE. He has plans for some exciting new characters as well. Wait till you guys meet the mysterious knight with the three dodo birds on the shield and his three goofy serving men!! It's even possible that the Wanderer himself will make a comeback, which I know would thrill all of you who were reading about him in BATWING and CORTANA back in 1965.

Meanwhile, I'll be in the hot tube with some babes in bikinis, sipping some Irish Mist and watching my TIVO replay of the Giants victory over the Patriots in the last Super Bowl but one. Hey, maybe I should tell Howard to work in a knight called Ser Tyree...


( 197 comments — Leave a comment )
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(Deleted comment)
Apr. 2nd, 2009 02:59 am (UTC)
very funny... considering that Howard have been writing "the moon world" for over 10 years now and "I, John Mandeville" 28+ years... he'll be awesome help for the DANCE... Happy April 1st! :)

"This is a drawing of an extinct bird of the island of Mauritius..." ;)
Apr. 2nd, 2009 03:09 am (UTC)
Are you really sure April first was the best day to make this post? ^_~ Anywho, best of luck with the partner. I know from experience that writing with someone can be very rewarding.
Apr. 2nd, 2009 04:22 am (UTC)
Is this an April Fools? BTW I love the frog.
(no subject) - misterdaniel - Apr. 2nd, 2009 11:00 am (UTC) - Expand
Apr. 2nd, 2009 03:16 am (UTC)
Great April Fools joke! I believed it until a paragraph in and I remembered the date! I'm shocked at how many here have bought it =D
Apr. 2nd, 2009 03:19 am (UTC)
I'm Confused
I'm confused was this a clever April Fool's prank? OR was this for real...I'm fine with it if it is real.
Apr. 2nd, 2009 03:37 am (UTC)
collaborative writing
I was hoping now that George W. has some free time, you and he might get together to wrap up ASoIaF. If you two could throw some WMDs in the narrative, perhaps under the control of some secret mastermind like Moonboy....
Apr. 2nd, 2009 04:19 am (UTC)
You know this would be great if it did happen, maybe someday.
Apr. 2nd, 2009 04:21 am (UTC)
Nice one hahahahhaha

I totally bought this until the final two paragraphs. :)
Apr. 2nd, 2009 04:31 am (UTC)
What really tipped this off as an april fools : the Irish Mist, I know you have better taste than that!
Apr. 2nd, 2009 04:43 am (UTC)
April Fool's...right?
Apr. 2nd, 2009 04:58 am (UTC)
ha ha
I was wondering what your April Fools blog would be this year.
Apr. 2nd, 2009 05:00 am (UTC)
What is the date?
Is it April 1st already?
Apr. 2nd, 2009 05:26 am (UTC)
April's fools! :D
Apr. 2nd, 2009 05:33 am (UTC)
С первым апреля:)))
Apr. 2nd, 2009 05:41 am (UTC)
Thank you for considering and making this decision - I know that you must have thought about it (agonised over it?) for a long time. I would have waited for as long as it took you to finish the novel (I never begrudge waiting for the good stuff) but I am glad that the wait won't be quite as long as I had feared. Good luck with the collaboration - I am sure that it will turn out well.
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( 197 comments — Leave a comment )


George R.R. Martin
George R. R. Martin

Latest Month

April 2018



  • 5 Mar 2018, 19:17
    Still working on that. When we have a final, I will share it.
  • 5 Mar 2018, 05:32
    All the Wild Cards books under Tor have had absolutely stellar covers. I'd frame them and hang them on my wall if I could.
  • 4 Mar 2018, 03:28
    Are all these examples digital artwork? It doesn't look like traditional oil on canvas. I miss the fantasy/sci-fi covers of the '70s and '80s. Even the paperbacks had amazing covers.
  • 3 Mar 2018, 17:49
    Whatever anyone can get their hands on is, I suspect, the right answer.

    At the last party, it was an open bar with pretty much everything you can imagine on offer. There were some special drinks as…
  • 3 Mar 2018, 00:07
    Any chance you could tell us who’s doing the cover art for Fire and Blood? And maybe when we can expect a glimpse of it. Thank you!
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