Thursday, June 19, 2014

George R.R. Martin

George R.R. Martin is the author of The Song of Ice and Fire cycle, adapted for HBO as Game of Thrones.

From his Q & A with Mikal Gilmore for Rolling Stone:

One of the more dominant themes in Game of Thrones is family. It's what gives the characters purpose, but it also ruins them. What was your own sense of family and home like?

I was born in 1948, and raised in Bayonne, New Jersey, which is a peninsula just south of Jersey City. By bus, it was 45 minutes to the heart of Manhattan, but Bayonne really was a world in and of itself. New York was very close, but we didn't go there very often. From the age of four I lived down on First Street, in the public-housing projects, facing the waters of Kill Van Kull, with Staten Island on the other side.

My father was a Martin, but he was of Italian and German descent. My mother was a Brady – Irish. I heard a lot from my mother about the heritage of the Bradys, who had been a pretty important family at certain points in Bayonne history. I knew at a very early age that we were poor. But I also knew that my family hadn't always been poor. To get to my school, I had to walk past the house where my mother had been born, this house that had been our house once. I've looked back on that, of course, and in some of my stories there's this sense of a lost golden age, where there were wonders and marvels undreamed of. Somehow what my mother told me set all that stuff into my imagination.

Was your relationship with your parents close?

My father was a distant figure. I don't think that he ever understood me, and I don't know that I ever understood him. We didn't use the term then, but you could probably say he...[read on]
--Marshal Zeringue