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George R.R. Martin confirms he’s still working on The Winds of Winter

PASADENA, CA - JANUARY 07:  Writer George R.R. Martin speaks during the 'Game of Thrones' panel at the HBO portion of the 2011 Winter TCA press tour held at the Langham Hotel on January 7, 2011 in Pasadena, California.  (Photo by Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images)

(Photo by Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images)

George R.R. Martin is heading down to the Guadalajara International Book Fair today, where he’ll sign books, give interviews, and meet members of the Mexican publishing industry. (“I expect I will be doing some tequila tasting as well,” he wrote. “I am informed that Guadalajara is the tequila capital of Mexico.”) He took to his Not a Blog to talk about the event, and gave us a tidbit about his progress on The Winds of Winter in the process.

This is my last scheduled event for 2016. My appearance schedule for 2017 is very limited, and will remain so until WINDS is completed. So if you want to meet me or get a book signed, this will be the last chance for a good few months…

So it sounds like Martin will continue to write The Winds of Winter into 2017 at least. Those hoping he’s been keeping the already-completed manuscript in his desk drawer for the past several months can adjust their expectations.


 

Martinology, or guessing when George R.R. Martin will finish the latest volume in the Song of Ice and Fire series, is a popular topic among fans. Many of them, including ASOIAF luminary BryndenBFish, have pegged early 2017 as a good candidate. That’s roughly consistent with this graph that The Washington Post mocked up a couple years back, which extrapolates George R.R. Martin’s writing speed into the future, and compares his pace to that of other notable authors, like J.K. Rowling and J.R.R. Tolkien.

Do Martin’s new comments make that prediction more or less likely? That’s the question.

In any case, Martin will be signing books at the Guadalajara International Book Fair this Saturday from 11:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. He will not be reading a new chapter from The Winds of Winter.

47 Comments

  • “the last chance for a good few months…”

    Hopefully that quote is a subtle hint that George expects the book will be complete in a good few months, and avoids the projected date certain that he does not want to state.

  • I really don’t believe that this will ever be finished/published. There are too many distractions and writing is hard work.

  • Here is my guess. I don’t think he would even comment on it if he did not see the light at the end of the tunnel. Keeping my hopes up for a 2017 release.

  • I’m turning old and grey over this wait! Come to think of it, so is the Gaffer. One can hope that perhaps he;s turned pragmatic and decided to combine the final two books into “The Winter Winds Turn to Dreams of Spring” and will bring it out when Season 8 is done. Of course, it will be 2.500 pages long! FWIW, on 2 January , I posted the following:
    “in addition to having logorrhea, he has two problems. 1) He has an empire to maintain and has brought out all sorts of associated material, participated in other genre projects, and showed up at a number of showbiz/literary affairs. All this takes away from actual writing time. 2) His world-building got away from him in ACOK and ADOD, and he now has vastly too many characters and subsidiary plotlines to resolve and tie up. But the person I feel most sorry for is not his loyal reader. It’s his editor. How is anyone short of SuperEditor going to cope with his monster of a manuscript and the immediate pressure?”

  • GRRM made it clear last December/January(?) on his blog that he really wanted to release Winds before the start of Season 6. But since he missed that deadline, and now that the TV show has completely surpassed the books (while providing a few spoilers along the way – fate of Jon and Hodor for example), I think it is entirely possible that GRRM’s motivations for releasing Winds may have changed. My concern now is that he may decide to just allow the TV series to completely play out (through Season 8) before releasing any more books in the series. Reason being that his narrative may be very different than that of the show and he “could” decide that he doesn’t want to compete with the show by providing conflicting narratives. A way to sort of just let the show run it’s course at this point.

    • The TV show hasn’t “surpassed” the books. The TV show is just making it up as they go along. The showrunners are clearly running on empty as they contrive ridiculous endings to storylines they obviously don’t know how to continue; diverge more and more from the books; and cater to adolescent cravings for “epic” battles, CGI dragons, and soap opera romance.

      The books have always been and will always be far superior to the show. Nothing the show’s 2 lead writers produce will ever approach, let alone surpass, the quality of Martin’s writing.

      I look forward to book 6 of Martin’s ASOIAF. I couldn’t care less about the next season of GoT. I’m certain it won’t contain any spoilers for readers of ASOIAF.

      • The first three books are superior to the show, but not AFFC/ADWD. There was too much filler in those books, whereas seasons 5 and 6 actually moved the plot forward. The show and the books will differ in many ways, but the big events will be the same. The last two seasons of the show has already spoiled so much.

        • The last two seasons were full of fillers as well only worse than those written by GRRM. They also managed to ruin some good characters. What they did to Dorn is just unforgivable. They didn’t do justice to Braavos storyline either. They turned Arya into shallow “badass” when in the book she is amazing, a war child, struggling with a loss of her family, fear, hope , bravery. Pretty much every character in the show looks cheap when compared to book material.

          • The filler in the last two seasons cannot be compared to the filler in the last two books. Like I said, the show actually moved the plot forward and we’re nearing the ending. Dorne was a joke in the books, as well. At least they didn’t spend a lot of time on it. As for characters, the Hound, Oberyn, Yoren, Cersei, Stannis, Jaquen, Hot Pie, Robb, Osha, Yara, Edd, and Tormund are much better characters in the show, imo.

    • Agree. Its such a joke. Could’ve finished it easily if he actually tried. I understand you can’t force writing, but come on. If he didn’t spend half his time blogging, attending Cons, book signings, etc…. his fame/popularity/wealth has increased tenfold because of ASOIAF/GOT and he’s basically just trolling his fans.

      ADWD was released the same month that GOT began Season 1… he had an original deadline for TWOW last fall…. now 15 months later he still doesn’t know when it will be finished. Ridiculous.

  • It seems there’s new speculation every day about when book 7 will be released or speculation that it “must” be released before the next GoT season for this reason or that reason. All this speculation is nothing but BS written to generate ad revenue. The people writing these stupid blogs have no privileged access to George RR Martin, his publisher, or anyone connected to Martin. They know nothing more than the average fan.

    • I’d say he owes his fans who made him rich and famous the effort of finishing a book within 6 years.

      Even if TWOW was TWO THOUSAND PAGES….he’s only averaging one page a day since he stopped writing ADWD. HE’S A PROFESSIONAL WRITER.

      Instead he’ll just go on his blog and mope about politics and the Jets and Nazi his comment section.

  • Gotta hate the fact the show will surpass the book. I didn’t know about GOT till the second season was over. Went and got the books, read ADWD, and boy was I surprised they’re still 2 more. It really is a shame. The show will still be great, I have no doubt, but would have been so much better with a completed narrative to put on the screen. Which means it probably wouldn’t have been cut for 2 short seasons. Oh well, I’m just an aggravated mentality. All shows must die:(

  • The show is excellent, for TV, but it will never ‘surpass’ the books, and it will never be canon. For me, it’s just a nice way to pass the time and commune with fellow aficionados while waiting for the real thing. I for one am glad to see GRRM take whatever time he needs to do a good job, rather than rushing it to satisfy spoiled, whiny, entitled fans.

  • GRRM needs to decide if he wants to leave this series unfinished or not. At the pace he’s going it’s not going to get finished. According to that chart GRRM is scheduled to finish the series when he’s 75 or 76 years old, and that is just assuming that there are 2 books left. The older people get the slower they get.

    Sorry, but you think he writes slow now wait until he’s in his 70’s

  • From the About Us page of WIC:

    Winter Is Coming is your source of news, rumors, speculation, and discussion for HBO’s Game of Thrones, the television adaptation of George R. R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire series. This site was created in November 2008, at the time the pilot was first commissioned, and has been following the production closely ever since.”

    I am confused by what I see as a consistent stream of negativity I read in the comments on this site about the show, its creative team, how inferior and disappointing it is compared with the books, etc. I will admit my bias upfront: I got hooked on the show by binge-watching the first four seasons before Season 5 aired, and now I’m about halfway through reading ACOK. The books were not on my radar before the show premiered, but I’m very grateful to have found this amazing and expansive world that GRRM created.

    I love the massively successful television program Game of Thrones. That’s why I read this website. What I don’t understand is why people come to this and other sites that are explicitly for fans of the show just to sh*t all over it. Isn’t there enough hostility and nastiness in our culture these days without bringing it into something that’s supposed to be entertaining?

    It’s one thing to disagree with a creative decision or storyline. I haven’t even gotten to Dorne in the books yet, but I can empathize with book fans and clearly see what a misguided and amateurish story arc it was compared with other material. While I’ve rewatched every almost episode of the show multiple times, I skip “Unbowed, Unbent, Unbroken” because the Sansa rape scene and handling of her story left me deeply unsettled.

    That said, I f*cking love this show. And I’m going to voice a minority opinion and say that in some ways, it actually has enhanced the source material. I think that David and Dan have added layers to some of female characters that don’t exist on the page. For me, book Cersei comes off as a one-note villain in GoT. On the show, one of the highlights of Season 1 for me was a scene between Cersei and Catelyn at Bran’s bedside where Cersei describes the painful loss of her first child with Robert as a way of commiserating with Cat. In a later episode, Cersei and Robert have a brutally honest conversation about their mutual disappointment with their marriage. These and other scenes that only exist on the show (Arya and Tywin at Harrenhal, Sansa reading Littlefinger for filth at Mole’s Town and more) add ambiguity, complexity and a different view of the inner life of these characters than what I have read thus far on the page.

    I’m very much looking forward to getting to ASOS, which I’ve heard is the strongest book. I’m dreading getting to AFFC, which I have yet to hear anyone say is at the same quality level as the first three books.

    I totally get being underwhelmed with an adaptation of something you love–I certainly have been this year (see under: Batman V Superman). What I don’t understand is seeking out a fan site for people who love that adaptation just to rain on their parade. Every time I read a comment that refers to D & D as “Dumb and Dumber” or something similar, I have to wonder if the poster is calling those who actually enjoy the show dumb as well. And I really don’t see how that’s cool at all.

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