The Grey Wolf

Discussion Thread for All Things Fire & Blood

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On the other hand it would be rather strange that the issue of too many heirs first arose during Jaehaerys I's reign. He may have had nine children live to adulthood but ultimately only two branches of descent, Aemon-Jocelyn and Baelon-Alyssa-Daella.

Edited by The Grey Wolf

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Thanks for sharing this information! I'll admit the Dance being 60000 words total instead of 80000 leaves me worried that some of the glaring problems with it won't be fixed but we'll see. Also, The Heirs of the Dragon is a weird title given that the time period has nothing to do with Aegon I, Aenys I, or Maegor I.

Well, keep in mind that those 60,000 words are what he wrote in one big burst AT THE TIME --- he can always write a bit more to round out any loose threads in the final version of "Fire and Blood". 

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https://www.reddit.com/r/asoiaf/comments/5qh7aa/spoilers_extended_the_possibilities_for_grrms_new/

Intriguing, this answers most questions. 

The original burst of writing that GRRM produced for the World Book included:

  • The Targaryen Conquest (most if not all of which is in the print TWOIAF, which is 8,000 words)  I'm rounding this up to an even 10,000 due to details on the First Dornish War from the later reign of Aegon I. 
  • "The Sons of the Dragon" - no official word count
  • Martin skipped over the reign of Jaehaerys I specifically, so we don't really have more than in the print TWOIAF. Yet.
  • "Heirs of the Dragon" - 17,000 words ("most" of which was adapted as "The Rogue Prince" - which I checked, consists of 13,000 words). 
  • "The Dying of the Dragons" - ****Elio confirms that 60,000 words were in the original writeup, not 80,000 (GRRM himself has misquoted this).  I just rant a wordcount, "The "Princess and the Queen" consists of 35,000 words. (Elio suspects that the "80,000 words" figure GRRM floated accidentally included both original TRP and TPATQ, that is, Heirs and Dying stuck together -- semantics.  These are solid figures.)
  • "Aftermath - The Boy King and His Regents" - "nearly as long" as the 60,000 word Dying of the Dragons.  Only a scant summation of these events was in TWOIAF, barely 3,000 words. 
  • GRRM stopped with Aegon III, didn't continue on into Daeron I. 

So let's see....10 + 17 + 60 + ~50 = ~137,000 words or so.....*assuming* that no more was written about Aegon I.

Unanswered questions:

  • Wordcount of Sons of the Dragon (but not for long!)
  • ....did Martin write an actual "chapter" on the pre-Conquest Targaryens on Dragonstone, more than what we got in the scant outline in TWOIAF?

Confusion on total word count:

  • Martin has alternatively said he wrote "300,000" words or "350,000 words".  Unclear.  The print version of TWOIAF is around 175,000 words.
  • ......what is the source for some in here saying that about 200,000 words were never published?  Elio and Linda said they wrote around 75,000 *at one point*, and I assume another 100,000 came from Martin's original 300,000?
  • How much of that "total wordcount" was for the Targaryen Kings, and how much for "Beyond Westeros"?  On the one hand, Elio and Linda said that they actually wrote considerable portions of the Free Cities section (just stringing together stuff already in the novels - though Linda remarked to me once that the entire backstory of Pentos as possible the only Free City with a  pre-Valyrian history was their idea; apparently based on logical deduction that "it's in Andalos, maybe it was an Andal settlement" - entirely logical IMHO ).  On the other hand, they've also remarked that everything else "Beyond Westeros" besides the Free Cities was just a *massive* burst of creativity from GRRM that took them completely by surprise. 

Circa 137,000 words.....how long could Sons of the Dragon be?  Well maybe the print version in "Book of Swords" will be condensed much as TPATQ was.  Could enough be written about the Faith Militant uprising era (Aenys + Maegor) to equal the Dance of the Dragons material?  Around 60,000 to get to 200,000?

.....of course, "nearly as long" as the 60,000 word Dance might truly be 59,000, not the 50,000 I lowballed....leaving yeah, a Dance-sized "Heirs of the Dragon", give or take some light padding for pre-Conquest, and the Jaehaerys summation we got for TWOIAF?  Yeah....based on his description I think he meant "specifically on just the Targaryen kings" and not "Beyond Westeros", though Elio has already remarked that there was Dothraki and Yi Ti material they had to cut down. 

Thoughts on my figures?

Edited by The Dragon Demands

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7 hours ago, The Dragon Demands said:

Martin has alternatively said he wrote "300,000" words or "350,000 words".  Unclear.  The print version of TWOIAF is around 175,000 words.
......what is the source for some in here saying that about 200,000 words were never published?  Elio and Linda said they wrote around 75,000 *at one point*, and I assume another 100,000 came from Martin's original 300,000?

Elio and Linda originally wrote all the stuff that's in the App now. The book was originally not conceived as a fake history book. That was the stuff they wrote. Then the plans changed to include to the fake history book we got. The actual prose of the book - aside from the Gyldayn quotes and the account on the Conquest - are either entirely Ran and Linda's prose (Targaryen history) or more or less edited versions of George's prose (e.g. the TWoIaF version of the history of the Westerlands vs. George's uncut version).

The history of the Targaryen reign is entirely George's content but they still had to write it up in a condensed version because George wrote so much it was effectively impossible to use much (or any) of his actual words outside those Gyldayn sidebars we still have. You see this best with the long Gyldayn quote from 'The Dying of the Dragons' about Rhaenyra's stillbirth - that is essentially just the complete version of a longer section that can also be read in TPatQ.

The parts of the history (aside from the accounts on the reign of Aerys II and the Year of the False Spring) also apparently were written by Ran and Linda on the basis of notes they received from George. Those section did not contain all that much new information, anyway.

But you can be pretty sure that various amounts of information/content were cut from effectively every section if the Westerlands thing is any indication. They had art on every page, which means they had to make plans for every page, which means there was only so much information that could be included on a single page, and so on.


@Ran 

Can you comment on the word count of 'The Sons of the Dragon' as you and Linda read it? Was the section on the Aenys/Maegor's childhood, youth and the reign of Aenys I George read at LonCon roughly half of the entire piece, or is Maegor's reign covered on many more pages?

And where exactly did you get the information on the Conqueror's reign that are not in 'The Sons of the Dragon'? The entire First Dornish War isn't covered in there, something you seem to have had considerable information on. Was this something George wrote another section on?

The whole sidebar about the Defenestration of Sunspear is a Gyldayn quote so one assumes the Fire and Blood stuff dealt with the First Dornish War, not some history of Dorne George might also have written.

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12 hours ago, The Dragon Demands said:

Thoughts on my figures?

They seem pretty spot on, based on what we know. Yeesh. 137k words covering only 5 of the 17 Targaryen Kings. I hope Martin doesn't plan on having much artwork in Fire and Blood. Even if it's just text, this thing is probably going to end up being as long as one of the longer novels in the series. 

I'm guessing that Sons of the Dragon will receive some fairly heavy editing, but it's hard to say. The scattered notes from the readings don't indicate much about Aenys' reign that didn't make it into the World Book. Maegor's section in the World Book is also very scattered and has a lot of gaps and question marks, so I'm hoping whatever we get leans more toward his reign than Aenys. 

As for the non-Targaryen material cut from the World Book, I think Elio once mentioned the vague possibility of doing a second edition of the World Book that greatly reduces the Targaryen material in favor of expanding the Seven Kingdoms and Essos sections. I don't know how well a wider audience would receive that though. It might seem like a bit of a rip-off to anyone that isn't a hardcore fan.

Personally, I think Martin should just trickle out that material on his website to hold us over, like he did with the expanded Westerlands material. Alternatively (and I know he would never do this given both his lack of free time and the degree to which he increasingly keeps his cards close to the vest), he could start a blog or tumblr or something that he can use to release...for lack of a better term, world-building patches. Kind of similar to what he did back in the day with email correspondence, where people would ask him specific questions and he would be able to disseminate little nuggets of information that would never come up in the text. I would envision this one as more targeted overall, i.e. people like you guys or Elio or Adam Whitehead, etc. could be like "Hey George, the location of Whitewalls makes no goddamn sense, here's why" and he could respond with "Oh that's because X, Y and Z" and boom, we've got a canonical fix. Or he could use it to just throw out random scraps of info as he comes up with them. "Here are the words of House Swann. Couldn't find a place to work them into the novels, but I thought of them and here they are."

 

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@Ran

Apart from other questions, what Lord Varys said:  any idea on the word count of "Sons of the Dragon" while we're at it?  (Also was the Conquest's 8,000 words pretty much everything on Aegon I or were bits cut from the *chapter* on Aegon I's later reign? -- also what was the name of that section which went straight into the World book - "The Targaryen Conquest"?

But a further question:  did GRRM produce a separate chapter in his *initial* burst on the pre-Conquest Targaryens on Dragonstone?  Or was the short paragraph outline in the Conquest section all you saw?  I mean, of course, I imagine a print version of "Fire and Blood" would *expand* on that history, I'm just asking if this was one of the "chapters" he poured forth in a huge burst for the World book.

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If we go with all those dragon titles, one could make another attempt at the chapters of 'Fire and Blood', sticking loosely to a chapter 

Prologue I: The Birth of the Dragons (Targaryen origins in Valyria

Prologue II: The Dragons on Dragonstone

Part I: The Reign of Fire

1. 'The Conquest', or 'The Dragon's Conquest'

2. 'The Dragon' or 'The Reign of the Dragon' (Aegon I)

3. 'The Sons of the Dragon' (Aenys & Maegor); sub-chapters could be titled 'The Fool' and 'The Cruel'

4. 'The Great Dragon' (Jaehaerys-Alysanne & children); sub-chapters could be 'The Queen Regent' (Alyssa Velaryon), 'Barth', 'The First Quarrel', 'The Good Queen', 'The Brave', 'The Second Quarrel', 'The Great Council'.

5. 'The Heirs of the Dragon' (Viserys I) or, perhaps, better 'The Splendor of the Dragons'

6. 'The Dying of the Dragons' (the Dance); a lot of sub-chapter imaginable - 'The Coup', 'The First Blood', 'Blood and Cheese', etc.

7. 'The Bane of the Dragons' (Aegon III); several sub-chapters imaginable; a section could simply be the Regency, split up into 'The Hour of the Wolf', 'The False Dawn', etc.

Part II: The Reign of Blood

8. 'The Young Dragon' (Daeron I) - considering that this should be a very interesting war we could get several sub-chapters

9. 'The Blessed (or Beloved) Dragon' (Baelor I) - Viserys II could be an addendum to the reign of Baelor

10. 'The Unworthy Dragon' or perhaps 'The Filthy Dragon' (Aegon IV)

11. 'The Good Dragon' (Daeron II)

12. 'The Absent Dragon' (Aerys I)

13. 'The Bloody Dragon', or 'The Cursed Dragon' (Maekar I) - because of the whole Baelor accident business

14. 'The Unlikely (or Fortunate) Dragon (Aegon V)

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On 2/15/2017 at 0:12 PM, Lord Varys said:

Text

Love your titles for the pre and post-Dance eras of Targaryen history but not so much the others. Judging by the canon titles we already have I personally think a better one for the reigns of Daeron I, Baelor I, and Viserys II would be The Young Dragon and His Brother.

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Just thought of a question. @Ran: Was there even enough non-Targaryen material cut from TWOIAF to justify making a whole new book?

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On 27.2.2017 at 6:53 AM, The Grey Wolf said:

Just thought of a question. @Ran: Was there even enough non-Targaryen material cut from TWOIAF to justify making a whole new book?

If this history of the West is any indication it is difficult to say. But it sure as hell is enough material to be moved into a new and expanded edition of TWoIaF.

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Posted (edited)

3 hours ago, Lord Varys said:

If this history of the West is any indication it is difficult to say. But it sure as hell is enough material to be moved into a new and expanded edition of TWoIaF.

Some of the details (such as Morgon's curse and the specifics of Maekar's death plus the Battle of Wendwater Bridge) would be nice to have as actual canon rather than semi-canon as they are currently so you may be right though IMO a new and expanded edition of TWOIAF is not likely to be released any time in the immediate future.

Edited by The Grey Wolf

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