June 11, 2014— -- Author George R.R. Martin, the creator of the "Game of Thrones" series, will introduce a new character in one of his upcoming books thanks to a $20,000 charity auction prize. He'll eventually kill off that character.
A 30-year-old Facebook employee won the highest prize level in which Martin will name a character after him in an upcoming book in the series, "A Song of Ice and Fire."
Will fans around the world name their child after this new and mysterious personality the way parents named their daughters Arya and Khaleesi, names that Martin created describing two of his female leads?
Except for characters like good 'ole Jon Snow, most names, even the "Wildlings" who roam beyond the wall, have multiple vowels and consecutive consonants.
This new character will be named Dave Goldblatt, a product specialist who reigns from San Francisco.
Goldblatt said he viewed the first season of the HBO series on the recommendation of a friend, then he immediately read the book series in six months.
When asked whether Martin will morph his name to mimic the designations of fictional noble men and women that sound part-Welsh and part-science fiction, Goldblatt said, "I have no idea. You’re going to have to ask George about that."
Technically speaking, his name is David, but only Goldblatt's mother calls him that.
"I’m just lucky enough to be in a position to do this," Goldblatt said of the $20,000 prize. "Obviously, the money is going to charity, so it’s an added bonus. I didn’t immediately seek to help wolf sanctuaries, but the more I read about the charities, I learned it was a worthwhile cause."
There were only two top-level prizes available, called the "martyr" level, reserved for a man and a woman. Martin will name a future character after Goldblatt and the other winner, who has remained anonymous. The two winners will choose their "character's station in the world (lordling, knight, peasant, whore, lady, maester, septon, anything) and you will certainly meet a grisly death!" the Prizeo website states.
Goldblatt chose to be a "Valryian," a people group famous for their indestructible steel, as his station in Martin's literary universe.
When asked why he chose to be a "Valyrian," Goldblatt said, "You read some piece of fiction and for whatever reason you think one particular character or race is cool – and for whatever reason, I thought the Valyrians were cool. I’m hoping in future books we get to see more of them."
Martin's project is raising money for Wild Spirit Wolf Sanctuary and the Food Depot of Santa Fe, New Mexico, where Martin lives with his wife, Parris. The campaign is hosted on celebrity-based sweepstakes fundraising site Prizeo.com.
After reaching the goal of $200,000 about a day after the auction was introduced online last week, the fundraiser's "stretch" goal of $500,000 was announced, with the original deadline of August 4. The fundraising website announced today that every Wednesday, a new prize will be offered. Today, another $20,000 prize was added featuring a trip to Comic-Con International 2014 in San Diego with Martin in July. That prize was promptly claimed within an hour.
Leyton Cougar, executive director of the Wild Spirit Wolf Sanctuary, said he was "stunned" and "thrilled" that the fundraiser has raised more than $374,600.
Martin and his wife have been long-time members of the sanctuary. The couple organized a few small-scale fundraisers and named 10 wolves after book characters, Cougar said.
Cougar said he has never read the "Game of Thrones" books but loves the television series.
When asked how Martin might transform Goldblatt's name in the book, Cougar said, "I have no idea. George is so darn creative, he will come up with something clever."