Not a Blog

A Good Cause, for a Good Person

September 9, 2017 at 11:19 pm
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My Aussie friend Lezli Robyn is a talented young writer and editor. She’s a Campbell Award nominee, one of Mike Resnick’s “writer babies” and sometime collaborator with Mike, and the assistant and right-hand-woman to Shahid Mahmud, owner and publisher of Arc Manor Press, the parent company behind GALAXY’S EDGE and a growing line of SF and fantasy classics. Many of you will have met her at the Kansas City worldcon or various regional conventions, manning the Arc Manor table in the huckster’s room, always with a smile on her face.

But now her eyes are failing her, and she needs help if she’s not to lose her sight.

Shahid, her boss and one of the good guys in his own right, has stepped forward to prevent that and established a Go Fund Me to get Lezli the procedure she needs to save her sight. You can find it at https://www.gofundme.com/LezliRobyn All the details are there.

Go. Read. Give.

It’s a terrific cause for a terrific person.

Current Mood: hopeful hopeful

A Horrifying Announcement

April 26, 2017 at 12:53 pm
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A long long time ago, in the projects of Bayonne, New Jersey, I fell in love.

I fell in love with comic books and superheroes, thanks to Stan Lee and Julie Schwartz. I fell in love with science fiction, thanks to Robert A. Heinlein, Andre Norton, and Eric Frank Russell. I fell in love with fantasy, thanks to Robert E. Howard, Fritz Leiber, and J.R.R. Tolkien. And I fell in love with monsters and scary stories (later in life, I’d learn to call them ‘horror’ or weird fiction, but as a kid, they were just monster stories to me)… thanks to a gentleman out of Providence who had died before I was born.

I first encountered the work of H.P. Lovecraft in a paperback anthology entitled BORIS KARLOFF’S FAVORITE HORROR STORIES. I knew Boris from his Frankenstein movies and from TV’s THRILLER, the scariest show on television at the time, but I had never heard of HPL until I read “The Haunter of the Dark” in that volume. I had never read a story that scared me more… so of course I sought out more Lovecraft wherever I could find it (not an easy task in those days). No werewolf, no vampire, no thing going bump in the night could give me chills to equal those provided by the cosmic horrors that Lovecraft evoked in tales like “The Whisperer in Darkness,” “The Colour Out of Space,” “The Shadow Out of Time,” “The Rats In the Walls,” “The Strange High House in the Mist,” and so many more. I have read a lot of horror since, some good, some bad, some indifferent… but only the best work of Stephen King has ever equalled Lovecraft, and that in a very different way.

Our world of imaginative fiction is fortunate in having several terrific writer’s workshops specializing in science fiction and fantasy, where aspiring authors can hone their talents and learn from established professionals… but New Hampshire’s Odyssey workshop is one of the few that gives equal emphasis to horror, to the monsters and scary stories.

I’m excited to announce that I will be funding a new horror-writing scholarship for the Odyssey workshop. Founded 22 years ago, Odyssey’s six-week program is held each summer on the campus of Saint Anselm College in Manchester, New Hampshire. Combining intensive, advanced lectures with in-depth feedback on students’ manuscripts, Odyssey has become legendary for the challenges it sets for students and the enthusiasm with which they meet those challenges. And all that writing, learning, critiquing, and sweat yields great results. Among Odyssey’s alumni are New York Times bestsellers, Amazon bestsellers, and award winners.

It’s my hope that this new scholarship will offer an opportunity to a worthy applicant who might not otherwise have been able to afford the Odyssey experience.

The Miskatonic Scholarship will be awarded to a promising new writer of Lovecraftian cosmic horror. Let us be clear: we are not looking for Lovecraft pastiches, nor even Cthulhu Mythos stories. References to Arkham, Azathoth, shoggoths, the Necronomicon, and the fungi from Yuggoth are by no means obligatory… though if some candidates choose to include them, that’s fine as well. What we want is the sort of originality that HPL displayed in his day, something that goes beyond the tired tropes of werewolves, vampires and zombies, into places strange and terrifying and never seen before. What we want are nightmares new and resonant and profound, cosmic terrors that will haunt our dreams for years to come.

The Miskatonic will be a full scholarship, given annually, and covering tuition, fees, and lodging for a single student each year. The award will not be limited by age, race, sex, religion, skin color, place of origin, or field of study. The only criteria will be literary. A panel of three judges will select the winner from among the applicants who have demonstrated financial need, solely on the basis of their story samples. Since this year’s class of students has already been selected from among the pool of applicants, the Miskatonic Scholarship will be awarded for the first time next year, to a student from the class of 2018.

H.P. Lovecraft himself during his lifetime gave generously of his time and talent to many a younger writer, including Frank Belknap Long, Robert Bloch, Donald Wandrei, August Derleth, Robert E. Howard, and many more. It is our hope that the ongoing annual Miskatonic Scholarship will provide the same sort of encouragement and inspiration to a new generation of writers, for all the long dark nights ahead.

George R.R. Martin

Stagecoach Rolls Out

March 16, 2017 at 3:31 pm
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Now it can be told.

On Tuesday everybody who is anybody in the Santa Fe film community gathered up the hill at the former headquarters of the Daylight Chemical Information Systems for the official rollout of the Stagecoach Foundation, dedicated to bring more film and television production to the City Different and the Land of Enchantment. We’re very excited.

Stagecoach will be a non-profit foundation. Our dream is to bring more jobs to the people of Santa Fe, and to help train the young people of the city for careers in the entertainment industry, through internships, mentoring, and education.

Once upon a time, before airplanes, before railroads, it was the stagecoachs that brought people to Santa Fe. Our hope is that Stagecoach will do the same.

And none of this would be possible without the generosity and visions of the late David Weininger, who passed away in November… but whose legacy will live on.

Adopt a Wolf for Xmas

December 16, 2016 at 3:13 pm
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Down in Candy Kitchen, New Mexico is the Wild Spirit Wolf Sanctuary, a refuge for wolves and wolf-dogs and other canids (dingos, New Guinea singing dogs, coyotes, even a fox called Romeo) that Parris and I have been helping out for years.

We’ve just helped them put together a new fund-raising film, and I thought that some of you might like a look. The film is by Elias Gallegos and Andy Atkins.

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If you’re still looking for the perfect gift for the guy on your list who has everything, why not make a donation to Wild Spirit in his name? Or better yet, adopt a wolf for him… or her. Our own association with Wild SPirit began many years ago when our friends in the Brotherhood Without Banners made Parris a wolf mother.

You can learn more at their website: https://www.wildspiritwolfsanctuary.org/

Ice Buckets!

July 27, 2016 at 12:04 am
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Remember all the madness of the Ice Bucket Challenge that swept the world not so long ago?

Sure you do.

If not, here are some reminders:

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There were more. Hundreds more. Thousands maybe. But you get the idea.

Silly, right? Celebs, regular people, rich people, poor people, men, women, all dumping ice on their heads and squealing and shivering… and for what? Some cynics compared it to stuffing phone booths or swallowing goldfish or doing the macarena.

Well, not so fast. Turns out all that silliness made a difference.

Read it here: http://nydn.us/2arKgDf

All those buckets of ice may have helped put the freeze on ALS. No, it’s not a cure… but it’s one battle one in the war against a truly horrible disease.

And I am so pleased that my friends and I could do our tiny little bit, with all the others around the world, in bringing this about.

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Pat Conroy Literary Center

June 16, 2016 at 12:06 am
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Pat Conroy was one of the great novelists of the last half-century.

Regular readers of this Not A Blog know what a huge fan of his work I am. No, he did not write science fiction or fantasy… but (surprise!) despite my love for our genre, I read a lot of stuff outside of it. And once I had sampled Pat Conroy, I read every book of his eagerly as soon as it came out. THE PRINCE OF TIDES is probably his masterpiece, but I loved BEACH MUSIC and THE LORDS OF DISCIPLINE and THE GREAT SANTINI and THE WATER IS WIDE as well. Oh, and his non-fiction memoir, MY LOSING SEASON, another engrossing read.

The movies based on his books were pretty damned good as well, even if the film version of THE PRINCE OF TIDES did omit… well… the prince of tides. SANTINI is the best of those. Amazing performance by Robert Duvall, once of the best of his career.

A couple of years ago, I had the honor of meeting Pat, and hosting him for an author event and booksigning at the Jean Cocteau Cinema. It was a rare privilege, and one I will always remember, and I can’t tell you how thrilled I was to learn that he’d read and enjoyed my own books.

Pat passed away in March… but his books will live on, and so will his memory.

In his memory, his family has now establishing a Pat Conroy Literary Center in his beloved home town of Beaufort, South Carolina. You can read about it here:

http://patconroyliterarycenter.org/

A worthy project, I think. I’ll be donating. I urge all of you who love good writing to do the same.

Help Fight Cancer

April 11, 2016 at 7:33 pm
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R.A. Salvatore has organized a “Bookworm” drive to help fund cancer research.

Donate… and you can maybe win a big box o’ signed books, including some of my own.

Only a few days left.

You can see all the details, and make a donation, at:

http://www.seecaityrun.com/bookworms-unite/

Fundraiser Continues

June 16, 2014 at 11:06 am
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Over at Prizeo, my fundraiser on behalf of the Food Depot and the Wild Spirit Wolf Sanctuary continues to soar.  As I write, my fans and friends have donated $390,000 — and we still have 33 days to go!!

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The grand prize — the visit to Santa Fe and helicopter trip to the wolf sanctuary — will be determined at the end of the fundraiser, by a drawing.  Everyone who donates will have a chance to win.

A lot of the secondary prizes and extra rewards have been snapped up, however.  Have no fear!  We're adding more.  I am donating more books and collectibles, two more breakfasts (one at San Diego Comicon, one when I am in NYC this October),  and even a couple pair of my infamous suspenders (braces to you Brits).  So keep a careful eye on the Prizeo site.  We plan to add new prizes every Wednesday, for as long as the drive is ongoing.  More details can be found at:

https://www.prizeo.com/prizes/georgerrmartin/a-wolf-sanctuary-tour-and-helicopter-ride

Holy Direwolves, Batman!

June 6, 2014 at 2:44 pm
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The response to our fund-raising campaign on Prizeo has been nothing less than mind-boggling.

One day into the campaign, the original $150,000 goal and the subsequent $200,000 goal have both been met and surpassed.  As I type, donations stand at $231,000, and we have raised the goal to $400,000.  And we still have 58 days to go!

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Every donations helps, whether large or small.  You guys have made me very proud.

Once again, the link is
https://www.prizeo.com/prizes/georgerrmartin/a-wolf-sanctuary-tour-and-helicopter-ride

I am told this is the fastest-rising campaign in the history of Prizeo.

Me and the Wolves

June 5, 2014 at 10:46 am
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How would you like to visit Santa Fe, spend a day with me, see my collection of toy knights and medieval miniatures, sample some green chile and carne adovada, then take a helicopter down to Candy Kitchen, New Mexico and the Wild Spirit Wolf Sanctuary to meet the Westeros pack?

Well, now's your chance.

I've teamed up with the good folks at Prizeo.com to raise some funds for two of my favorite charities — the aforementioned Wild Spirit Wolf Sanctuary, and the Food Depot here in Santa Fe, where they feed the hungry people of Northern New Mexico.  Win the grand prize, and we'll fly you in from wherever you may be in the world for the day described above.  Every donation has a chance to win… but there are all sorts of other cool premiums and prizes as well, for various levels of donations.  T-shirts, signed maps, signed books,a signed script,  breakfast at worldcon or comicon.  You can die horribly in WINDS OF WINTER… and I'm even donating my well-worn Greek fisherman's cap!

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For more details, go to
https://www.prizeo.com/prizes/georgerrmartin/a-wolf-sanctuary-tour-and-helicopter-ride

Win or lose, it's all for a good cause, or rather two good causes.

Help the wolves, and feed some hungry people.

You'll have my thanks.