Game of Thrones: George RR Martin REVEALS inspiration for ASOIAF books and Westeros map

Earlier this week the 70-year-old author accepted an International Recognition Award at the Irish Books Awards. And during the Q&A afterwards, Martin spoke of the inspiration for his Game of Thrones series A Song of Ice and Fire. While owing much to medieval history, he did admit that the story “came out of nowhere”, according to RTE. And revealed that Westeros’ map was not based on Great Britain as some are led to believe.

After all, King’s Landing is in the south-east like London and The Wall above the North brings Hadrian’s Wall to mind.

Yet Martin asserts that the map is based primarily on Ireland. Well, upside-down Ireland anyway.

On his creative process, Martin said: “Initially I followed the characters but [after] certain point I said ‘I’ve got to draw a map’ and that’s when I turned Ireland upside down.”

“I needed a map, I had a piece of blank paper, what should this Westeros place look like?”

The author continued: “I didn’t want it to look like Middle Earth, or anything recognisable, but I wanted it to have a distinctive shape.

“I used two pieces of paper because I had a line in there already that the North is as big as all of the six lower kingdoms combined.

“So I had one sheet for the North and one for the South.”

During his acceptance speech before the Q&A, Martin apologised that he wasn’t writing The Winds of Winter right then and promised he would finish A Song of Ice and Fire.

Martin said: “My latest book Fire and Blood is a work of imaginary history and A Song of Ice and Fire is a work of fiction, fantasy novels, which I will finish.

This was met with laughs from the audience in attendance.

He apologised: “I know I should be at home writing right now, I’m sorry!”

The author’s personal deadline to finish The Winds of Winter is next summer.

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