George R.R. Martin
Born on the 20th of September 1948 in Bayonne, New Jersey, George R.R. Martin is an American author best known for his fantasy, horror and science fiction novels. Recently, he has been named one of Time Magazine’s Most Influential People of 2011, primarily for his epic fantasy saga A Song of Ice and Fire. Often compared to another great literary giant, J.R.R. Tolkien, Martin has become the modern master of weaving fantastic tales with strong, distinct, and memorable characters that are sure to become literary classics.
George R.R. Martin came from a working class American family. His father was a longshoreman in New Jersey and they lived near the docks in Bayonne. His early education was from a Marist High School where according to him, he first developed his interest and eventual love for the literary genre he is now famous for. He started his award winning career early as he was only in his teens when he won the Alley Award for his work Powerman vs. The Blue Barrier. He then proceeded to obtain his Bachelor’s degree and eventual Master’s degree from Northwestern University graduating summa cum laude in 1970 and 1971, respectively.
In the 70s, George R.R. Martin began to write more science fiction material which eventually got him nominated for a Hugo and Nebula award with his work With Morning Comes Mistfall. Although he was not fortunate enough to win that year, it proved to be the start of his glorious writing career. In the 1980s, Martin started to write for television, participating in such projects as the remake of the Twilight Zone and cult classics such as the Beauty and the Beast series starring Linda Hamilton and Ron Pearlman.
In 1991, George R.R. Martin went back to writing novels. It was during this time that he would create what is to date his most celebrated work, A Song of Ice and Fire. This saga, which was supposedly inspired by Wars of the Roses and Ivanhoe, chronicles the politics and power struggles by the prominent families in a fictional land called Westeros. Beautiful characterization, coupled with simultaneous plot developments, give this series a unique and exciting pace that leave its readers in breathless anticipation on what is to happen next.
A Song of Ice and Fire is intended to be a seven part series, of which only five is currently available. A Game of Thrones, the first book in the saga, has just recently been turned into a mini series by HBO with HBO Productions buying the rights to all of the seven books. The fifth and latest of the books to be published, A Dance with Dragons, has just recently been released last July 12, 2011. This highly anticipated installment comes as a blessing for the fans of the series who have eagerly waited for the next chapter in the saga starring the characters they have come to love as the book prior to this, A Feast for Crows, was still published way back in 2005.