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

Published 1 year 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

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  1. Tracey, i do like the idea of GOT having more than just 10 episodes, but HBO is an independent studio, they will need more money to make more episodes. They don’t have the extra networks helping them as HBO are raising their money all alone, trying to get money back from subscribers, DVD sales, and more ways for them to get money for their studio. to continue to make more tv shows and movies. HBO is a lot more like a movie studio than other tv studios. And HBO is aware that GOT has a big following, but GOT season 1 cost 50 million, 2nd season cost 60 million, and 3rd season just now cost 70 million. while these money sounds very big and GOT is very expensive to make now, but compare to other hug networks, cost more. which is why they are able to make those 22 episodes. 22 episodes for me is to much to handle now a days. BBC is very good example of having tv series that will have 4 episodes or 15 episodes a year. BBC is a popular network, but they can’t make those 22 episodes because like blockbuster movies, they cost, and they cost big time. also since GOT setting is a medieval world like, that will take a lot more time and money to look perfect. considering a lot (maybe all now) tv shows are set in modern world and post production is easy for that group (still hard work, but still) to finish the touchings the tv shows.

    • lisa- you’re mistaken. The reason why HBO only does ten episodes a year is not because of budget- but because IT TAKE TIME to produce such quality. They want the show back the same time each year and there just isn’t enough time to do more than ten episodes a year. These 22 episode shows you speak of- first of all there’s tons of commercial time in them- the average hour long television show is 36% commercials. HBO has no commercials. Aside from that- those shows do not have the extravagantly detailed post-production that GOT has- nor do they shoot in as many countries.

      • it takes time to produce quality and the budget for any show runners who work on their shows. i know it’s very important for GOT to produce the quality that they want and they doing a really good job on it. but in general for any writer writing a show must think “can we afford this?” “will this work?” “will we have enough time?”. writers have the liberties of what they want and at the same time, have to follow a formula for the show they are working on. for example, George rr Martin numerous times had said that when he was writing for “The Twilight Zone” the studio had to tell him to trim the props or the action sections because it was too expensive to produce. time and time again that George was rewriting scripts for an episode to make a reasonable cost and at the same be as creative as he wants. it’s hard. and when it’s time for production is when a show tries to make the quality that they want. i know that GOT can’t make more than 10 episodes a year, it’s impossible for them. i don’t want GOT to have more than 10 episodes, is what i was trying to say. guess i just worded my words the wrong way, sorry if i say the first sentence the wrong way. i agree with you. though there are other people who want (i mean really) GOT to have more episodes, that i don’t agree with. i know HBO doesn’t have commercials, which is good, don’t like commercials now a days anyway. and i know a lot of tv show now a days don’t do period pieces or medieval times related. because doing a modern show is easier to produce and it’s easier for the writers to write. even though they still have to meet the reasonable budget and quality of what they want. also a lot of shows prefer to stay in one country so that it won’t be tedious for the actors, the crew, and themselves. making a modern show is hard enough as it is. just GOT is more creative than a lot of other shows, especial in post-production.

        • it takes time to produce quality and the budget for any show runners who work on their shows. i know it’s very important for GOT to produce the quality that they want and they doing a really good job on it. but in general for any writer writing a show must think “can we afford this?” “will this work?” “will we have enough time?”. writers have the liberties of what they want and at the same time, have to follow a formula for the show they are working on. for example, George rr Martin numerous times had said that when he was writing for “The Twilight Zone” the studio had to tell him to trim the props or the action sections because it was too expensive to produce. time and time again that George was rewriting scripts for an episode to make a reasonable cost and at the same be as creative as he wants. it’s hard. and when it’s time for production is when a show tries to make the quality that they want. i know that GOT can’t make more than 10 episodes a year, it’s impossible for them. i don’t want GOT to have more than 10 episodes, is what i was trying to say. guess i just worded my words the wrong way, sorry if i say the first sentence the wrong way. i agree with you. though there are other people who want (i mean really) GOT to have more episodes, that i don’t agree with. i know HBO doesn’t have commercials, which is good, don’t like commercials now a days anyway. and i know a lot of tv show now a days don’t do period pieces or medieval times related. because doing a modern show is easier to produce and it’s easier for the writers to write. even though they still have to meet the reasonable budget and quality of what they want. also a lot of shows prefer to stay in one country so that it won’t be tedious for the actors, the crew, and themselves. making a modern show is hard enough as it is. just GOT is more creative than a lot of other shows, especial in post-production.

    • When you get a chance, check out the online HBO store and all of the Game of Thrones Products. I don’t think HBO will be hurting for cash. As one of the Starks might say: “Winter (and Christmas) is coming”!

  2. unfortunately, it seems that the pages of my ebook will turn yellow before I will be able to read the last books.

    grrrr

    • AMEN! Our friend needs to stay on task and remember some of his readers are Senior Citizens like him and want to read them before our end of days!! This is The Game of Thrones, not the Game of Crones! Seriously so many authors seem to take way too long writing series and one does wonder about their discipline and desire to finish what they have started.

      • Right on. I finally finished recently the last book in a series called The Wheel of Time by Robert Jordon. Twenty years reading those books and Mr. Jordan (who looks a lot like Mr. Martin) died before his final manuscripts made it to print.

        • Ohh yeah man what a long wait that was but WOW so worth it, Wish HBO had picked it up rather than GOT but sadly Harriet doesnt hold the rights as that retarded company that said they would make a movie and never did are still sitting on the rights for i “think” 5 more years

          • And all good, Im sure Brandon Sanderson can free himself up to finish another authors Epic fantasy :) he did an amazing job with the last 3 WoT books :)

            • Screw that… Sanderson needs to deliver on the next mistborn trilogy… I’d also settle for making the Law of Alloy into a series.

              • Agree, Mistborn was awesome, but hes not making a book series for it, there actually making the new Series into a PC game and the story line you play through is actually the book… sounds damn cool

        • way to go rand althor .. the only male mad aesedai … wish I could get round to finishing the book … I think I stopped at book 8 or 9

        • way to go rand althor .. the only male mad aesedai … wish I could get round to finishing the book … I think I stopped at book 8 or 9

        • Read the wheel of time series as well here and I did not know that the series is finished.

      • Seriously?? any Idea how much work goes into a 700-900 page books? to keep continuity? to develop and follow through plot and story lines? these are not children’s books, its Epic Fantasy, Good things take time.

      • I am a senior citizen and have almost given up on George r r Martin. I know how I want the series to end, but I don’t know if I’ll ever see it.

  3. That fat f$$k better hurry the hell up before he drops dead.

    • Exactly i just finished the wheel also! My concern exactly! Hurry up george!

    • For that comment I hope you drop before he does.

    • Wow…..what a great fan. Martin is lucky to have you on his side…..

  4. I read somewhere that GRRM had told Benioff and Weiss the major plot points so that they could carry on with the show should he die. So maybe the TV show will surpass the books.

    • Ive seen the same statement as well. Good to see he is thinking that far ahead though, the Wheel Of Time fans got lucky (dare i say lucky when a man is dying) that Robert Jordan was able to pick a successor and to go over the important plot lines and have the last chapters written, id hate to see GoT end due to him dying and never having told anyone the plot lines :(

  5. I don’t want George Martin to speed up, I prefer a good book instead of a rushed book on time

  6. I really enjoyed the books and i understand writing a complex books like these takes time, but i also understand that the author don’t have the time or the willing to accelerate this process. The worst part is that i love a book (or series of books) with beginning and ending and looks like these series of books maybe won’t have an ending. 2015 for book 6 and maybe 2020 for book 7? our author will be 65 this year and by 2020, 72 years old. I really think it would be another story without end and i won’t see the end of the series.

  7. In my opinion, let the old chap take as long as he needs to make it perfect.
    I want this series to be memorable, historic. I want it to be remembered in 15, 20, 50 years. Like LOTR, A Wrinkle in Time, Narnia, Dune, Foundation, The Mars Trilogy, His Dark Materials… There’s hundreds of mediocre or just not good enough fantasy books being published every day. ASoIF has the potential to be truly great, and I think GRRM owes it to his work, and to us, to make these books as great as he can. So let us wait George! You just make sure when you finally put down pen, there’s no other way you’d wish it ended.

    • maybe you wanna check how long all those books you just mentioned took to write i.e hobbit – > (lord of the rings) all written in less than 11 years total while he was serving in the army. Narnia 7 books all in under 7 years……also G R R martin just 3 months ago stated he gets overwhelmed so stop’s and play’s computer games – he just a slacker

  8. Just finished Book 5 DWD last night & after reading series for last few (long) months religiously I am very disappointed at the need to constantly kill off key characters once they have finally gotten to a point of substance within the series. I almost didn’t get through Book 4 FFC due to its long, drawn out & somewhat irrelevance but persevered slowly. AT least with Wheel of Time all the key characters where there for the final main event at the end so it was worthwhile getting through all 14 novels. Now that is an EPIC fantasy adventure that should be put to the small screen, sorry GOT, but WOT has got you beat.

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  10. So does that mean more cutting & pasting of the same catch-phrases over and over to bloat out the word count, or will we actually get a book that does something. If words are wind, books 3, 4, and 5 were 60% hot air. A lot of talk, spinning in place, and no real development which we had in spades with the first two books. If he just stopped trying to manufacture methods to titillate, that alone would speed it up by 10%. It worked in the first book, and hooked the younger audience, but has become less than perfunctory, and even awkward at times.

    What this series needs is an editor that actually does their job. Good editing turned the first six Star Wars books into three good movies. Then Lucas decided to make the prequel trilogy up without any editing, and look where that got him. He does not even own Lucas Arts anymore. If the editor was to cut 50% of the material from the advance chapters it might make G.R.R. realize that Winter is here, and while there is a dedicated core that would wait until The End of the World (aka August 2013), many will check back in five or six years. Hopefully by then we will have some reviews of the final book, and will learn if it ends like it started (well) or fizzles as fire melts ice, and water puts out fire.

  11. I think George Martin lies! I think he is finished, or at least the first draft of Winds og Winter and maybe even the last book.

    No way is that man stupid enough to travel around to all that events if not having full control over when these books is due to be released.

    Thats my opinion. I think we get WoW end of 2014 or at least announsed as finished. And the last book is out just after the WoW TV series is out. This I think is carefully planned.

  12. I think wow has to be released ether this year or very early next year in order to give himself time to finish a dream of spring. to show what I mean
    (Starts Filming)
    2013 season 4 Storm of Swords part 2
    2014 season 5 Feast of Crows/Dance with Dragons part 1
    2015 season 6 Feast of Crows/Dance with Dragons part 2
    2016 Season 7 Winds of Winter
    2017 Season 8 A Dream of Spring

    So in order to give himself 3 years to finish A Dream of Spring he has to finish Winds of winter within the next 12 months or risk having the show over taking the books. also I was reading that HBO doesn’t want to draw out GOT to 10 seasons so I think season 8 will be the last.

    • I think it’s likely that WoW will be split into 2 seasons, like ASoS. Grrm said himself that the book will be massive, and there should be as many plot twists as ASoS.

  13. There are 2 things I want to say:

    1. I do not think (hopefully) that book #6 and #7 will take as much time as #4 and #5…
    I believe it is the complexity of Feast and Dance why it took so much time to write these books…
    The plot-lines where diverging instead of converging and I am sure it was really difficult to drive them to the turning point from where they can start converging into one story again….
    Besides, the author had quite hard time on deciding about the structure of those books, finally deciding on parallel timelines and this unorthodox framework also took time i think…
    Also in #4 and #5 major characters where experiencing mental shakes (kind of). They where questioning their own earlier beliefs, where struggling with answers and where stuck with difficult situations to solve. This also should have taken quite a time from GRRM since he is going through everything together with his characters.
    From what it looks like, The Winds of Winter and Dream of Spring are going to be more straightforward stories with plot-lines converging single story and supposedly richer with action (more fun to write, I guess). So in my opinion, they are going to be more like the Storm of Swords and this book, despite being one of the largest, was written very fast, wasn’t it? I don’t remember exactly, in 2 years?
    So, that is why I hope that we will get the books pretty soon

    2. Second thing that I want to say is the ONE and MAIN criticism I have towards GRRM: He should not have published ANY of his books before having the WHOLE THING DONE.
    I understand why the writing of such HUGE stuff like ASOIAF takes so much time and I want him to take his time writing it…
    but the waiting process is really painful… and full of spoilers as well:
    what I mean is that after I finished all 5 books and was hungry to have more, I started to reread, I started to surf internet, and I found out (mostly myself, some with others help) most of the hidden passages and twists of the story…
    I know that GRRM is fond of taking unexpected turns but I am pretty sure that many things I have guessed correctly and when the last books are published they will not surprise me as much as they should, if I had read them in one single breath (like I have read 5 books, I actually read all 5 books in 5 or 6 weeks, which is quite fast considering that English is not my native language and I was reading from PDF on PC)… and all 7 books were published together, there would be none of this terrible waiting

    Anyway, ASOIAF is awesome… the only thing it needs now is awesome ending… and it will stand as a monumental work in the genre

    • I think GRRM is enjoying the measure of success that he is surely entitled. He is traveling the world these days. He is also no stranger to deadlines considering the cryptwork. The thought has crossed my mind that he may be spread out too thin with everything he is involved in fron what I have been seeing.

      I am eager for the release of the books. However, I would rather GRRM be motivated by an eagerness himself to finish the book series and not a looming deadline that drives the books to completion

  14. As a fan of the book series. I hope Mr. Martin does not rush thru these next two books just for the TV version. The writing may be compromised and I personally would rather wait for another great book and a great ending to this amazing story than a shoddy rushed ending.

    • thank you! i wholeheartedly agree my friend.

  15. let the guy take his time to write. why is there all this unnecessary pressure on him. enjoy the story and enjoy the tv series, slowly, but don’t rush the guy please just cause you can’t wait. don’t turn this amazing fantasy novel and well adapted tv series into some commercial b******* because we the audience are simply impatient.

  16. I’m not so much concerned about the show catching up to Martin. I’m more concerned that Martin finishes the series before he keels over from a heart attack and dies.

  17. I talk as one who just read 5 books in a row. The waiting for me was not longer than 3 weeks yet^^ The books stood in my shelf for 3 years since the beginning of the TV show. I could content myself with just having them stand there full of promises and rich on story. Because I knew once I would open these books there’d be my downfall. And here I am after season 3 and not able to wait another second -.- Now I HAVE to wait. It’s not my decision anymore. Stupid Stupid Stupid!!! I can’t even be annoyed with GRRM because I knew that he didn’t pop out the books once a year and I knew that he isn’t the youngest and healthiest person in the world. And even though I kind of hate myself for giving in….this is soooo good, such a masterpiece and if this wonderful man needs a decade to write the next book than he should have the time. My only wish is that he doesn’t die on a heart attack before. You can not say that he lives a quiet life. He’s on tour all the time so I hope he knows his boundaries and will relax once in a while. I prefer him much rather playing a videogame from time to time than him having a burn out! Still very very eager for the next book :D

  18. He would probably be able to get the books done if he didn’t hit every single comicbook expo on the planet.

    The first books came out at a nice pace but he seems to have lost his way and is now struggling to piece it all together.

  19. wow. Some strong views being pushed here! Whilst, like every other fan, I’m waiting on baited breath for Winds of Winter, let’s put things into perspective, huh? GRRM isn’t a spring chicken. Who wants to be flogging their guts working at his age, particularly given some of the bile directed at him by so called fans.

    For those referencing the Wheel of Time, let’s be fair. Brandon Sanderson did a great job of keeping us up to date on progress – and yes, some tips could be picked up by team Martin – but the end product wasn’t great. I’d rather – now Danaerys has been extricated from the Mereneese knot that GRRM got himself into – GRRM took things at his own pace. He doesn’t owe us anything (but yes, am permanently drooling over every post re Winds of Winter too).

    As GRRM himself has said, look elsewhere in the meantime. For myself, I’ve been checking out Ian Mortimer’s books on the late Plantagenet kings. Learnt a shed load about Edward III and now got the Henry V book, having read the one on his father. Shakespeare has a lot to answer for (as to the Tudors). After that, has to be Wars of the Roses!

    • Lets face it, we need a new author. Martin isn’t writing fast enough and the story is starting to go downhill.

      Fortunately Disney just bought a different franchise so George Lucas now has some free time and probably could write a better ending. On time, on budget and so romantic, let Lucas do for Game of Thrones what he did for the Prequels of Star Wars!

      • It took me a reread to get that you were joking. Phew. Well done.

    • Oh, I disagree. Grrm definitely owes us. We pay his bills and provide him with a large paycheck. He better deliver the final 2 books within 5 years.

  20. War of the Chtorr is a prime example of waiting for ever for a series to be completed. I am sure David Gerrold has given up on completing it. Really hope the same thing does not happen to GOT. I won’t even start reading a series of novels until it is completed.

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  22. I have waited so long for the last installments after reading straight through book 1-5 that I have now lost interest. We don’t have the series here so haven’t watched that either. Too bad it has taken him so long to finish the story!

    • I too have just finished reading Song of Ice and Fire and although still in shock about what has just occurred to the Lord Commander of The Wall I so oo want to find out how Sansa, Arya, Tyrion and Daenerys are doing and can’t wait for the Winds of Winter. May have to start interacting with family members in the meantime!!

  23. I am in agreement that I would rather him take his time and write two good books for the ending of this story. Don’t get me wrong, I’m impatient as ever for book 6!!!!

  24. It took Michelangelo four years to paint the Sistine Chapel; Tolstoy six years to write War and Peace; three years to build the Titanic; from sketches to completion of the Brooklyn Bridge…18 years. A generation has passed since the first part of the Games of Thrones novel was written. It seems to me that Mr. Martin had the idea of a story, but not an actual story when he first began. Apparently nothing has changed. Its more like a never ending soap opera than fantasy/sci-fi. Me thinks Martin finally hit the jackpot and he is now resting on his ample laurels. I had hoped for much and more from such a great talent.

  25. I want more direwolves!

  26. I’m anxiously waiting for the next two books. I don’t want Martin to rush through the last two books just because of HBO. It’s a great story from a great writer and I really want him to finish the story they way he envisioned.

  27. Who cares if a TV series and silly individuals are being impatient. As Martin would say, did the mothers of these people have a third nipple while they were nursing? Stop being so needy.

    I’m as excited as anyone else to read Books 6 & 7. However, as long as it takes to make it perfect, Martin should do that. This method clearly didn’t steer him, or his readers, wrong for the first five books.

  28. It amazes me how little most readers know about writing…

    Thanks to the author of the article- it was well written with exactly the information I was searching for.

    As for the comments – no author finishes a series before trying to publish the first book – most don’t even know for sure what path a series will take before the first one or two go through the sawmill of editors and publishing.

    How sad, also, that those who should be most concerned for the health of this man who chose to share HIS world with you- the public, should only berate him for taking some little time for himself (he is a man like any other and has a right to time of his own) or wish only that he live long enough to give you what you crave.

    As for unfinished works in the event of his premature death, the rights to finish HIS work will go to whomever HE chooses – if I were the author I would assign them to a horrible writer in order to punish my unfeeling “fans”… (or hurriedly kill off every last character without explanation while on my deathbed).

    Let me be clear – the author owes you nothing. Not. One. Single. Thing. The money he earned for what he has already written is his. Just as your paycheck from last week does not mandate you to remain at your job next week. The only thing he might owe is to his publishers for any advances paid for his next book. To you armchair critics he owes not a single blot of ink from his pen. It would be better for you to plead than demand, lest he, like young Joffrey, decides to torture you for your impertinance.

    I, for one, intend to immerse myself more deeply in this rich, vibrant world, until (if at all) the next book/episode appears. For all your criticisms, you really have only two options: To wait, or to walk away.

    Best of luck.

  29. I made the mistake of starting Game of thrones without realizing it was apart of a series..an unfinished series at that! Now I’m done with book 5 and I have to say that had I known what I was getting into I wouldn’t have started it until at least book 6 came out! From what I’ve heard though its going to be massive so maybe it’ll take so long to read book seven will come out before I finish :P