‘Game Of Thrones’ Creator Writing Faster To Finish Books 6 & 7

Published 2 years ago by , Updated September 19th, 2013 at 2:13 pm,

Game of Thrones Season 7 Series Ending Finale Game Of Thrones Creator Writing Faster To Finish Books 6 & 7

After taking more than twenty years to write five of the seven novels in his A Song of Ice and Fire fantasy series, widely celebrated author and screenwriter George R.R. Martin is feeling the pressure of his own success. As Game of Thrones, the HBO program based on his novels, continues moving forward year after year, Martin knows that he’s going to have to pick up the pace with the final pair of books to satisfy the network- and his fans.

Speaking to Mashable in a recent interview, Martin acknowledged the need to pick up the pace with The Winds of Winter – the upcoming sixth entry in the Song of Ice and Fire saga – while also discussing the dangers of establishing and dodging deadlines. With the third season of HBO’s show premiering this coming Sunday, Martin realizes that it’s only a matter of time before the two entities are caught up to one another. On that subject, he had the following to say in the below direct quote:

“So I need to write faster. The last two books took a really long time, so I’m hoping this one [the Winds of Winter] will go a little faster. But I make no promises. I found out long ago that when you look at the overall task, the cathedral you have to build, it looks so daunting that you just give up and sit down and play a video game.”

Martin published the most recent installment of A Song of Ice and Fire, titled A Dance With Dragons, almost two years ago on July 12, 2011- the same year HBO kicked off their televised adaptation of Martin’s towering epic – and an eyebrow-raising five years after releasing the fourth book, A Feast For Crows. Since then, Martin has only made piecemeal progress with The Winds of Winter while TV showrunners David Benioff and D.B. Weiss have three seasons under their belts. The writing is on the wall, so to speak: they’re gaining ground, and Martin isn’t.

game of thrones george r r martin peter dinklage Game Of Thrones Creator Writing Faster To Finish Books 6 & 7

Admittedly, Benioff and Weiss are only translating half of A Storm of Swords (book three) to the screen for Game of Thrones season 3; the second half will likely constitute the whole of S4. On top of that, the events of A Feast For Crows and A Dance With Dragons play out concurrently, which makes adapting their combined tally of 1,824 pages somewhat complicated. In other words, the showrunners have their work cut out for them as HBO’s Game of Thrones soldiers on – especially since there’s no telling how long The Winds of Winter and A Dream of Spring, the last chapter in the series, will end up being.

But they clearly have the less daunting task, and their working relationship with HBO guarantees that they’ll output a season a year, whereas with Martin, fans will get The Winds of Winter when they get it. It’s also very much worth noting that Benioff and Weiss have both expressed a desire to see Game of Thrones go as long as nine seasons, which isn’t outside the realm of possibility depending on the size of the unfinished books and how A Feast For Crows and A Dance With Dragons are adapted. If Martin doesn’t speed things up, he’s going to find himself with an incomplete manuscript and a TV series with nowhere to go.

Ultimately, Martin’s just affirming something that’s been a real concern for quite some time, but it’s encouraging to see him confront the problem head-on. Now we’ll just have to wait and see if he manages to cross the finish line before Benioff and Weiss overtake him.


Game of Thrones premieres Sunday, March 31st on HBO.

Source: Mashable

Follow Andy Crump on Twitter @agracru
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  1. GRRM has told Dan & David many unreleased plotlines, how it all ends, who ends up on the throne, etc. already. So if the worst were to happen to GRRM, they have the general outline to go by and they can simply fill in the blanks, which by that point they should have no problem doing.

    • This is sort of what happened with Scott Pilgrim vs. the World, which Brian Lee O’Malley couldn’t finish in advance of Edgar Wright’s film. O’Malley just told Wright the ending, and Wright took it and ran with it, but he still ended up with a different climax.

      I think you can get away with that on a book/adaptation like Scott Pilgrim, but I could see it being more of a problem with a grounded narrative epic like A Song of Ice and Fire. Worst comes to worst, I’m sure you’re right, but I think Martin and HBO will try to avoid it.

      Still, it would be really cool if Benioff and Weiss finished off the series without spoiling Martin’s own ending.

    • Ya but no true fan gives a sht about what they make up in the TV show. don’t get me wrong its the best show on TV but who will finish the books when that ridiculously fat Jabba dies?

      • I am more worried about me croaking before he gets the books done. I will come and haunt him if I do!

        • Thats exactly my thoughts too Marlene and I must say succinctly put lol!

  2. When I look at him I can’t imagine him playing a video game. I rather picture him sitting at the top floor of a lighthouse in the middle of a storm, hacking away at his typewriter. 😀

    • That’s a fantastic image, and it fits perfectly.

  3. The remaining published material translates out to 3 more seasons so if he gets the next book out in 2015 he should be fine.He’ll then have to get the final book out in 2017 to keep pace.

    • I also predict a release for 2015 for TWOW. I’ll go on a limb (without wagering anything) and sayyyy……. February (it’s winter after all), November 2014 if we’re all lucky.

    • Actually, they’re splitting the current book (storm of swords) as well as the last two books into two seasons each. So that’s five seasons before he needs to be done.

  4. As a writer myself, I know how hard it is to meet deadlines when some days you wanna get down to it but have no motivation or coherent ideas to further what you already have and other days you get so many ideas that you spend 20 hours of the day writing just to cram everything in and flesh it all out later.

  5. I could totally see them turning books 4 and 5 into at least 3 seasons. So add together seasons 3 and 4 for book 3 and we’re looking at 5 years till we catch up. I hope they don’t take 3 years to tell the story of books 4 and 5 but I could see it happening.

  6. We all wanted this.

    Now the new issue becomes: will the hurried pace make the storytelling step down a bit?

    I don’t know, but I doubt it. I think GoT is the best show on television by far and those scripts come from his books, so we’ll be fine. They’re going to stretch book 3 into two seasons, I hope they don’t do it too often though.

  7. Another thought…

    Since there was talk of adapting one of his prequel books into a series, maybe they could go the Spartacus route when they had Gods Of The Arena as a prequel while Andy Whitfield was ill?

    That way, we get our GOT fix but we’re not forcing George to release crap just for the sake of meeting a TV deadline.

    • I think that is a brilliant idea and could work practically.

  8. The problem with Dunk and Egg as “in betweeners” is that those stories are only novellas and all 3 stories would only equal maybe 5-6 episodes. Plus, since it takes place 80 years before GOT than what do you do with Peter Dinklage, Lena Heady, etc since they are under contract?

  9. This is the whole reason I became disenfranchised with GRRM and his books. They are excellent, but the wait is too long.

    • One thing I had done to ease the wait for more chapters of the Ice and Fire series was read other authors that Mr. Martin is a fan of. Historical fiction author Bernard Cornwell is excellent. Although now I am patiently waiting for him to finish his Saxon Tales.

    • I’m with you…I like both the books and the series, but they’ve turned me off with the vast spans of time between everything. Too much to do in life to stay interested and involved.

  10. Not to mention the guy’s in his 60s and doesn’t exactly look like the model for health – this does not help matters.

  11. He’s writing faster so he doesn’t croak before its done and some wanker attempts to finish the story and ruin it. Gotta piss him off that it took so long to get recognized lol.

    • He’s actually said that he won’t let anyone else finish the series if, god forbid, he dies before finishing it himself…

  12. I think George got our complaints about him taking so long with the last two books.

  13. I believe he cranked out Storm or Swords, one of the largest books in the series, in just 2 years after Clash of Kings so it is possible. The problem was he did not know how to bring all of the characters round circle to Westeros in Dance with Dragons…it was the Mereenese Knot. Now, supposedly, he has it figured out so maybe it will be quicker to Winds of Winter and Dream of Spring.

  14. The story is bad fantasy. It’s just War of the Roses in a poorly designed Middle Earth.

    • Get off the thread troll.

      • Just because you dislike my commentl, does not mean I’m a troll. Name calling eliminates any credibility you once had…

    • Your just butt hurt that your glorious “Twilight” is forgotten. Pound salt.

  15. I don’t get what’s the rush. A number cable series tend to be a little disjointed in terms of the scheduled start of new seasons – for example Mad Men and the Sopranos. I’d rather the series take a hiatus for a few years than Martin make hast and put out crappy books. That man in one brilliant writer, DON”T RUSH HIM!!!!!

  16. Great image. Respect for the writer. I find this one of the best series i have ever seen so far.

  17. This evening is about to set of the second season right? Cant wait no more:)

  18. We as fans know the outcome that is to happen with the impending doom of the White Walkers. That is the most interesting. Have them wipe out Westeros and make everyone join Denarius and her dragons, Fire vs Ice. She will sit on the throne! Like the land in the movie Legend with Tom Cruise, the Goblins treading through the wind and snow

  19. the names r intriguing themselves. Just reading the titles “The Winds of Winter” and “A Dream of Spring” excites me!!! Also means “winter is coming” since we’re still in fall with book 4 and 5 (technically one book). Keep up the good work Martin!

    • actually, at the end of Dance the white raven comes to announce the coming of winter.

  20. Write on! Brother!

  21. I just finished book 5, and I got on the internet to see if book 6 will be coming out soon, no such luck! Fantastic series, but my goodness, 20 years to write 5 books? I read all 5 back to back, but Im afraid I’ll forget a lot of details once book 6 is out. I had the same problem with Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander series. Book 8 came out so long after 7, that I was lost and decided to start over with book 1. The show is awesome too! After the second season, I decided I couldnt wait a year to find out what happens, so I started reading :)

  22. Good things come to those who wait. This series is an enormous world, with so many charecters and plots, it takes a long time to weave the tales all together into one story. For people with imagination, any one of those characters could be a main character of a completely new series. That is why it takes so long, well worth the wait.

  23. what i dont understand is why they cant make 2 seasons every year so we dont need to wait 9.5 months.
    after all its only 10 chapters…so we get 2.5 months of GOT a year …
    its not a matter of financing …the series is breaking rating recored every season !!! so where is the problem ?
    As for book 6 anyone who red all the books understand it has to be a stunning book !
    mr g.r.r.Martin if you read this …THANK YOU for hours of pure fun !!!!

    • The producers of GOT have said repeatedly that it takes a full year to write, film, and edit ten episodes. Most movies (even the crap ones) take longer than that to make, and they are only a couple of hours long.

      They are making 10 hours of quality television per year. Be happy you’re getting that much!

    • I’m on the fence to be honest. On one hand, like everyone else I can’t wait for the next books and part of me thinks he should leave the personal appearances to the actors and concentrate on his writing; on the other hand, I would prefer he takes his time so the next two are just as incredible as the previous ones and aren’t rushed out and ruined just for the sake of a TV show. I love both the books and the show, but if I had to pick one I would have to go with the books. If HBO are worried about the length of times it’s taking, maybe they should start putting out 22 episode seasons like many other shows do, they know they have the following now and it’s not like they don’t have enough good material.

  24. I think he’d be better to finish his story within the confines of the TV show…THEN release the books when he sees fit to fill in extra gaps. That’s really the only way he’s going to finish this stuff. It’s also possible he may get help/co-writers.

  25. So glad to know there are two feet on Martin’s ass so I can finish the series before my hair turns all white and my unborn grandchildren are voting!

  26. By the way, Winter is coming, lets get on with it!

  27. I have been waiting for over a year for book 6! Martin left so many characters in such awful situations it’s driving me crazy wanting to know whar has happened to all of them! Is there any way we can at least find out how close he is to finishing book 6? Where and how can I beg him directly to hurry up before I go nuts?!

  28. you killed off rob stark! as of this moment i refuse and will not watch this program ever again

    • If you expect to have characters you like to survive watching this show, you are going to have a bad time lol.

    • How very mature opinion…

  29. You still have jon snow

    • Apparently someone hasnt read the books. One of the reasons I love this series is you never know who is going to die. But then I need to reread the series for I dont remember the knight of flowers being gay.