When most people read A Song of Ice and Fire, the fantasy series that inspired the “Game of Thrones” TV show, they probably notice that a lot of the characters end up, well…dead. But David Stall went way beyond just noticing – he decided to start keeping track of exactly when each character met his (or her) demise.
Like lots of “Game of Thrones” fans, David got interested in the series by watching the show, and then wanted to move on to read the books – but he didn’t stop there.
“About halfway through the first book, I realized there were a lot of people dying. And I wanted to know how much it would actually be visually. So, I went and bought some Post-it® Page Markers, and just kept on going all the way through.”
“I put a lot of thought into how I was going to mark them. There weren’t going to be any past tense deaths, and it couldn’t be someone who was informed that someone else had died somewhere else in the story. It had to be first-person, present tense.”
“By the time I was done, I looked at it and I was able to see, ‘Oh, that’s where this major event happened, or, that’s weird, not many people died here.’”
So, as it turned out, flagging the deaths wasn’t just for fun – it actually changed how David read the books, and made the story even more interesting.
“It added a big level of suspense, a lot like in horror movies where you hear that music and the main character is walking down a hallway, and you just get really suspenseful because you know something bad is going to happen, but you don’t know exactly when.”
For David, this kind of visualization added something completely new to the reading experience – a way to think about the plot and characters in a whole new way.
“Sight is one of our best senses, so any way that you can capitalize on that in order to gain further knowledge into something, it’s important to do so. I could have just read the books, and I would have enjoyed them a lot anyway, but adding something more to it, like the Post-it® Page Markers, just added another layer of depth to the story – another layer of interest.”
David’s photo of the books all decked out in Post-it® Page Markers got a lot of attention online, getting posted and reposted all over social media. Obviously he’s not the only one who thinks this kind of visualization makes the reading experience richer.
It’s amazing how something as small as marking the details of a story can change the way we understand what happens – and give us a new perspective on something we love.