WIC Editor, Zack Luye, will no longer be leading the site. Zack had to step away because of scheduling issues that will prevent him from giving his full attention to WIC. A really special thanks to Zack, who did an awesome job managing WIC the last six months. While we are sad to see Zack depart, we are excited for Rowan Kaiser, the site’s new editor, to introduce himself.
Hi, everyone. I’m Rowan Kaiser, and I’m extremely excited to begin my watch as the new editor of Winter is Coming on August 25th. Game Of Thrones and A Song Of Ice And Fire are some of the best and most fascinating stories being told in popular culture today. Being able to work with one of the biggest sites and communities for both the books and show is, in many ways, a culmination of my life and career as a reader, fan, and critic.
“Such a splendid tale and such a fantistorical! I read my eyes out!” This was my first encounter with A Game Of Thrones, an Anne McCaffrey quote used by the Science Fiction Book Club to advertise A Game Of Thrones. I’d never heard the term “fantistorical” before, but figuring out its meaning wasn’t difficult: this was a story about human conflict and political power, instead of a hero’s journey to save the world from evil wizards, as most fantasy I read at the time was. So I bought it. And it blew my mind about what fantasy could be. It blew everyone’s minds about what fantasy could be.
Then I devoured the second book. And the third. Along the way, I named my new family cat “Imp” after Tyrion. (He’s sixteen years old now, still adorable, less impish.) In the last couple years, the HBO show brought it all back. A Song Of Ice And Fire is still the type of story I want to discuss, share, and love. If there’s one thing I’ve learned in the past four years, it’s that I’m not alone. You all—we all—have found something compelling in these stories.
I’ve been working as a television critic for the past several years, primarily at The A.V. Club, where I’ve reviewed shows like Veronica Mars, Babylon 5, The Originals, and Bob’s Burgers. I’m also a video game critic, currently writing a book about the Mass Effect trilogy of games, and I’ve been published at sites like Ars Technica, IGN, Joystiq, and many others. If you’d like to see a full portfolio, here you go.
My Game Of Thrones-specific work includes this Storify on the show’s geography and military strategy, and this American Prospect piece on how the Red Wedding reinforced the story’s analysis of patriarchal systems. I also reviewed the second season of the show at Indiewire Pressplay.
As editor of Winter Is Coming, I’d like to make two things happen. First, I want to reinforce this site’s existing strengths. This is one of the top Game Of Thrones sites on the Internet, and it got that way for a reason. Let’s make sure that what has made this site great stays around.
Second, I want to take that foundation and build on it. I want more. I want more interviews, analysis, feature writing, explaining, news, debates, reviews, and more. I want Winter Is Coming to be the home of Game Of Thrones and A Song Of Ice And Fire conversations of all kinds. I want those discussions to be ongoing here. I want this to be a site that examines this dense and fascinating series from as many different angles as it can support—and it can support a lot. Toward that end, there are a few regular features I’d like to announce immediately.
- Starting next week, I’m going to review every episode of Game Of Thrones up to the end of the fourth season on Tuesdays—so there will be a “Winter Is Coming” review on August 26th, if you want to watch along.
- I’m also planning to start a weekly series of Game Of Thrones debates as soon as we can work out the schedule, with questions like “Is it bad if the TV show gets ahead of the books?”
- Finally, I’d like more expansive discussions of Game Of Thrones, what influenced it, and what it has influenced, which may include conversations about other TV shows, fantasy novels, video games, films, and more. (Oh yes, we’re gonna talk about Dragon Age: Inquisition.)
And now my watch begins. Let’s game some thrones, everyone!