It was a perfect new year (no I did not kiss a girl at midnight) until I got a text. Nope, it wasn’t an drunken ex or a client on US time but it was a nerdy friend celebrating New Years at home with his laptop. And he sent me this link.
I read it. Aye, I read it in the middle of the dance floor. I went from dancing to this in seconds…
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So it turns out he missed his deadline, not once but twice. Originally the editors and publishers set Halloween as the deadline. In May 2015, George in his own words –
“That seemed very do-able to me…”
was cool about it. But then again Game of Thrones is one of the most popular Tv shows, and with great popularity comes the paparazzi.
The publishers know George better and knew he couldn’t complete it on/before Halloween. So they understandably extended the deadline to December. Which was still awesome since they needed 3 months after that to get the hardcover out. That means the plan was still in place, and that the Winds of Winter would still come out before the sixth season.
Unfortunately George was unable to meet this deadline too.
It is not writer’s block or any other excuse. He’s just not good with deadlines. He mentioned his other novels Dying of the Light, Fevre Dream, The Armageddon Rag which he completed with his own pace. He did not have publishers or crazy fans running behind him; harassing him day after day, bombarding him with questions on blogs, forums even red carpet events.
“No contracts, no deadlines, no one waiting. Write at my own pace and deliver when I’m done. That’s really how I am most comfortable, even now.”
What he has achieved with A song of Ice and Fire is nothing short of a miracle. The fanbase and popularity skyrocketed after The Game Of Thrones came out. And with it, his obligations and distractions too. So here on the New Year’s Eve at exactly 24 minutes past 00:00 he posted the update on his blog. He didn’t owe anyone an explanation but there it is. The post was well received by the fans. All of the fans encouraged him and wished him luck.
Though there is disappointment and the sixth season may and may not spoil the books for us, we’re just happy that he is at least done with “hundreds of pages” and “dozens of chapters”. Besides nothing changes for the TV show watchers as they will never match the pain of book readers. For them, season 5 turned out to be good when the first 4 episodes were leaked at once. They did not feel bad about the show being deviated from the books as they haven’t read them in the first place. *boils down in anger*
“Just consider. Mago, Irri, Rakharo, Xaro Xhoan Daxos, Pyat Pree, Pyp, Grenn, Ser Barristan Selmy, Queen Selyse, Princess Shireen, Princess Myrcella, Mance Rayder, and King Stannis are all dead in the show, alive in the books. Some of them will die in the books as well, Yes! but not all of them. Some may die at different times in different ways. Balon Greyjoy, on the flip side, is dead in the books, alive on the show. His brothers Euron Crow’s Eye and Victarion have not yet been introduced (will they appear? I ain’t saying). Meanwhile Jhiqui, Aggo, Jhogo, Jeyne Poole, Dalla (and her child) and her sister Val, Princess Arianne Martell, Prince Quentyn Martell, Willas Tyrell, Ser Garlan the Gallant, Lord Wyman Manderly, the Shavepate, the Green Grace, Brown Ben Plumm, the Tattered Prince, Pretty Meris, Bloodbeard, Griff and Young Griff, and many more have never been part of the show, yet remain characters in the books. ”
He took great efforts to point out the characters that are dead in the book and not in the show and vice versa. Fans have begun “theorizing” there as well, but hey we do love those crazy theories by nut jobs out there.
Which by the way, confirms one of the long debated questions of season five. King Stannis (The Grammar Nazi) is Dead.
There may or may not be a hint in it. It’s like Schrödinger’s cat all over again. All we can take away from this is he is human and he is trying. He did not give us the next deadline (he’s supposed to miss) or any other promise for the fear he won’t be able to keep it. He’s just gonna roll on his own. “Meanwhile, I’ll keep writing. Chapter at a time. Page at a time. Word at a time. That’s all I know how to do.”
This leaves D&D to wreak havoc in Westeros (and Meereen). But then again the adaption is in a league of its own. The books are good. The show is good. They’re two different things. George seems pretty calm about it.
“For years my readers have been ahead of the viewers. This year, for some things, the reverse will be true. How you want to handle that… hey, that’s up to you.”
This was not how I imagined my new year would begin. The update was much awaited and it did bring some relief to the fans all around the world. It was bittersweet to finally know that George is doing his best to complete the books and D&D to spoil them.
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Let us know in the comments who do you think would die in the sixth season of Game of thrones.
Software Engineer. Flick Freak. Avid Reader. ASOIaF enthusiast. Budding writer. One who makes the crowd and credits the same.