George R.R. Martin, creator of the extremely popular "A Song of Ice and Fire" book series, recently held a charity auction to support Santa Fe's Wild Spirit Wolf Sanctuary and the Food Depot of Santa Fe. The top lot at the online auction was the chance to be featured as a character in an upcoming installment of the book series. Consequently, the winner's character will meet an ultimately untimely and assuredly grisly death, something Martin's characters are somewhat known for experiencing. The book series, which provides the source material for HBO's "Game of Thrones" television series, is still being written by Martin. Of the seven planned installments in the book series, only five have been published so far.

A cultural phenomenon
"A Song of Ice and Fire" is notable for the fantastic depth and breadth with which it explores the fictional kingdom of Westeros and the surrounding lands. Martin has penned thousands of pages that include references to an astonishing number of characters. He is known for often killing off the most beloved personalities in particularly gruesome ways. The continuous rotation of new characters entering and old ones dying has kept audiences enrapt in the story, which follows the people of Westeros and the surrounding lands in their fight to ascend to the throne, or destroy it.

The charity auction
With the intense popularity of both the book series and television adaptation, it is no wonder that the charity auction sponsored by Martin was such a hit. Over $350,000 was raised in support of the two New Mexico charities. The highest bids of $20,000 earned two individuals, one male and one female, the opportunity to be featured in an upcoming book as a character. The male winner, Dave Goldblatt, is a 30-year-old Facebook employee who submitted the winning bid within minutes of the auction going live. The female donor, on the other hand, has chosen to remain anonymous. Both Goldblatt and the anonymous donor will have the opportunity to choose which position within the fictional world of Westeros they would like their characters to hold. Martin's books are notable for including characters from every walk of life – lords, peasants, knights, ladies, maesters and septons are just a few of the many social strata that the story's characters must navigate. Goldblatt has indicated that he would like to be a Valyrian, a race of men notable for their production of indestructible steel.

ICollector routinely hosts many book and manuscript auctions for collectors with literary inclinations. Looking for something used while filming "Game of Thrones?" Check out the Hollywood prop auctions to see if anything has come up.