George R.R. Martin says he’s “given up” on answering when the A Song of Ice and Fire novels will be finished, and confirms the pressure from both HBO and fans gets under his skin.
Just last month, George R.R. Martin said that he won’t change how he writes his A Song of Ice and Fire novels for impatient fans. Now, in a video interview, Martin admits that the pressure of both fans and HBO for him to finish the Game of Thrones books, do get under his skin and sometimes make it harder for him to buckle down and write.
Yes, to some extent it does, but when the writing is going well it doesn’t matter. When I’m there and working, I just kind of fall through my computer screen and I forget the world, I forget deadlines, I forget the TV show, and the emails, and all of that stuff. It’s just me and the characters and the world that I’m describing, and I’m writing a page at a time, and a scene at a time, and a word at a time.
Martin also talks about his obligation in finishing the books, and that he’s given up on answering the question “when it (the books) will be done?” since whenever he gave a time frame before and it didn’t pan out, some people assume he’s doing it deliberately. Not only that, but there’s even a crazy conspiracy theory among book fans that Martin has the books already finished and is just releasing it in a timely manner to maximize profit, which the author calls as “crazy.”
Obligation is an odd word, I don’t know if I would go with that word. I certainly feel a desire to finish the book. And it must be said that while I do get a lot of emails and mail of the type you’re describing, there are also many, many that are supportive, and probably far more of people saying “take your time, I love your books, whenever you’re ready I’ll be here.” Of course which is an attitude that I find far more pleasant than the “when will it be done?” I’ve actually given up answering the question “when will it be done?” In the early days, especially after the third book, because the fourth book took a really long time, and I kept being wrong. People said when will it be done, and I’d give an answer and it would not be done by then, I would run into some problem, or decide to rewrite, or I would change course. And once you give a date and then you miss that date, there’s an element of the audience that thinks you’re doing it deliberately. There are even some strange conspiracy theorists out there who are convinced that I finished the whole thing years ago but I’m just hiding the books in my cellar and releasing them in order to maximize something or other. There’s a lot of craziness that goes on, but it’s pressure, and the obligation is to the work itself. I’m telling a story, however many books you divide it into, three books, four books, seven books, which is what I’m presently going for, it’s one story, as much as as Tolkein’s Lord of the Rings is one story. It has a beginning, it has a lot of middle, and eventually it will have an end.
Martin isn’t the only one bothered by book fans. Maisie Williams, who plays Arya Stark in Game of Thrones, confesses that she’s “so sick” of snobby book readers. Let’s hope Martin finishes The Winds of Winter soon. Otherwise, Season 5 of Game of Thrones might find itself deviating from the books a little too much. Have you heard other conspiracy theories as to why Martin hasn’t finish all the books yet? What’s the craziest one you’ve heard so far?