Fans of A Song of Ice and Fire, the book series on which HBO’s insanely popular Game of Thrones TV show is based, have been waiting for the next book in the series–The Winds of Winter–since the last book, A Dance with Dragons, was published back in 2011. With the show’s final season looming, fans await any news about the next book more eagerly than ever.
Luckily, there’s some good, if vague, news on that front: Author George R.R. Martin stated during a recent interview with Entertainment Tonight that his writing has “been going very well lately.”
As the author has stated many times before, he’s given up on trying to guess exactly when he’ll be done writing, as fans tend to lash out when he provides dates that then come and go without a new release. “It’ll be done when it’s done,” Martin characteristically told ET on the red carpet for the show’s Season 8 premiere. Then he added: “It’s been going very well lately, so knock wood.”
ET, which is one of GameSpot’s sister sites, debuted the clip from the interview in the first episode of its weekly Game of Thrones show Theories and Thrones, hosted by myself and ET’s Leanne Aguilera. You can watch the full episode, including the interview with Martin, below.
The Winds of Winter wasn’t the only topic of discussion. Martin also said of all the storylines dropped from the show, he misses Lady Stoneheart the most–a feeling that’s been echoed by many fans ever since the vengeful character was left out of Game of Thrones Season 4. But Martin said he understands why she was cut.
“Even with a novel of ordinary size, when you adapt it for television and film, usually it involves cutting and simplifying, and my books are not books of ordinary length,” he said. “If we included everything from the books we’d still be on Season 1. It would have been an eight-year-long Season 1. There are hard choices sometimes, but that’s the business.”
Finally, he dodged the question of whether the show is hurtling toward the same ending he has planned in the books: “I don’t want to spoil my books or the show, so watch both and read the book, and you decide,” the author said.
There’s still no projected release date for The Winds of Winter, but with the show finally building toward a conclusion, fans can hope that Martin will be able to focus on writing and get it done. After that, he’ll just have to write yet another book to draw the series to a close as it was originally intended. Sigh.