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George R. R. Martin

Writer

Born: 20 September 1948
Birthplace: Bayonne, New Jersey
Best known as:

The author of A Game of Thrones

Fans of author George R. R. Martin love him for his rollicking fantasy series that began with 1996's A Game of Thrones, but they became cross with him after it took six years for him to finish the fifth book (out of a projected seven). Martin has been writing fantasy stories since he was a kid, and while he was earning his undergraduate and graduate degrees in journalism from Northwestern University (1970, 1971) he was also busy writing short stories and fiction for comic fanzines. He was first published in the early 1970s, and by the end of the decade was writing full time. Martin worked as a television story editor and producer during the 1980s, including on the 1986 version of The Twilight Zone and 1987's Beauty and the Beast. He was also publishing fantasy novels like Fevre Dream (1982) and Dead Man's Hand (1990), but he didn't have a big hit until A Game of Thrones, the first of a planned seven book series called A Song of Ice and Fire. Although not an immediate success, the book eventually gained a huge following and has since sold millions of copies. After Thrones, the sequels A Clash of Kings and A Storm of Swords were published with relative speed, in 1999 and 2000, respectively. For A Feast of Crows, Martin's fans furrowed their brows and waited until 2005. As the years passed, Martin's progress on the fifth book, A Dance With Dragons, slowed. Fans began to gnash their teeth and publicly complain in internet forums and specially created fan sites, cursing Martin while praising his work. The announcement of the 2011 publication of A Dance With Dragons was welcome news for readers, as was the 2011 cable television production of A Game of Thrones.

Extra credit:

During the Vietnam War, George R. R. Martin was a conscientious objector; he worked from 1972-74 as a volunteer with VISTA (Volunteers In Service To America)... The announced titles for the sixth and seventh books in A Song of Ice and Fire are The Winds of Winter and A Dream of Spring... He is no relation to music producer George Martin, who worked with The Beatles.

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