George R. R. Martin, the author of the A Song of Ice and Fire series that inspired the HBO hit Game of Thrones, blogged Friday about the new season of the show, and in the process, he dropped a few thoughts about priorities (Winds of Winter), and his reputation as a “serial killer” for the frequency of character deaths in the Game of Thrones universe.
Martin opened by sharing the HBO trailer for the upcoming seventh season of Game of Thrones. He also answered the inevitable question about the progress of the books in a brief mention — in which he only describes the completion as “eventually.”
“Seven gods, seven kingdoms, seven books (eventually)… seven seasons.”
Though George R. R. Martin makes seven sound quite final, there have already been assurances on the Winter is Coming site that an eighth season of Game of Thrones is in the plan, though it may be a short season.
Martin has no more to say about the progress of Winds of Winter in his initial post, focusing instead on the upcoming Hugo Awards and the possibility of Game of Thrones as a contender, along with other shows (Stranger Things, Westworld) he sees as worthy options. However, as he so often does, Martin delved into some conversation in the comment section.
For one thing, Martin reiterated what he previously expressed regarding his priorities. Martin said two years ago that he would be stepping away from some of the activities (such as some conventions) surrounding Game of Thrones. He even backed away from his role in writing episodes for the Game of Thrones series, with an intent to focus on writing.
It has been two years, but on Friday, Martin indicated that maintaining his focus is still a priority, as a fan asked for permission to contact the author regarding a PhD thesis.
“Sorry, not doing any ICE & FIRE interviews until WINDS is finished.”
It’s a far cry from a timeline, but it at least seems to indicate that the Game of Thrones author is maintaining his focus. It’s a small ray of hope for those fans who’ve been keeping a closer eye since Martin said in January that he had hopes of completing the book this year.
George R. R. Martin also addressed his reputation as a “serial killer” who knocks off characters left and right, saying that despite the many bloody deaths in Game of Thrones, he’s actually a romantic more than a killer at heart.
“Despite this rep I seem to have as being a serial killer, I am really a romantic at heart (as the long time fans who have read all my stuff, not just ICE & FIRE, have known all along).”
To those who questioned Martin’s characterization of himself, the Game of Thrones mastermind pointed out that a number of the stories that have been culturally lauded for romance have devastating endings.
“And who says romanticism requires saccharine happy endings? What’s more romantic than ROMEO & JULIET, WUTHERING HEIGHTS, THE GREAT GATSBY. In sf and fantasy, we have works like ‘The Ballad of Lost C’mell’ and Beren & Luthien…”
What does this mean for Game of Thrones fans who are anxiously awaiting news of Winds of Winter? Just that George R. R. Martin is still at work and has not abandoned them. There’s no retraction of the suggestion that book six could be done this year, but no new timeline, either.
Game of Thrones Season 7 premieres on HBO Sunday, July 16 at 9 p.m. ET. Winds of Winter will be released….for the fans’ sake, hopefully sometime in the not-too-distant future.
[Featured Image by Taylor Hill/Getty Images for Miller Lite]