Game of Thrones wrapped up its eighth and final season in May. The finale, and the entire final season, was controversial. Some people enjoyed it. Others didn’t. Some thought it was fine. Whatever the case, the ending was a much-discussed event.
But will the reaction to the final season impact author George R.R. Martin’s final two novels? It doesn’t sound like it. Martin told EW that he feels a “temptation” to change plans for his next entry, The Winds of Winter, but he won’t do it.
“That’s wrong,” he said about changing his writing based on how people reacted to the show. “Because you’ve been planning for a certain ending and if you suddenly change direction just because somebody figured it out, or because they don’t like it, then it screws up the whole structure. So no, I don’t read the fan sites. I want to write the book I’ve always intended to write all along. And when it comes out they can like it or they can not like it.”
Martin said the internet has changed how fan theories are spread, and how much steam they pick up. In a time before the internet, only 1 in 100 people might accurately put together the threads of a mystery like Jon Snow’s parentage. But with the internet, if one person finds a clue, they post it online and then everyone else understands a plot reveal they might not have otherwise seen coming.
Game of Thrones the TV show got ahead of Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire series, upon which the show is based. Martin said he told Game of Thrones creators David Benioff and Dan Weiss “a number of things” related to his plans, and some of this ended up in the show. However, Martin’s novel series will take a different path towards its conclusion, it seems.
“It’s like two alternate realities existing side by side,” Martin said about the show and his book series. “I have to double down and do my version of it which is what I’ve been doing.”
As for when Martin plans to finish The Winds of Winter, well, you can probably guess his response. “It will be done when it’s done,” he said.
Looking ahead, a Game of Thrones “celebration” panel is slated for San Diego Comic-Con this week, but Weiss and Benioff–as well as Ian Glen and Nathalie Emmanuel–have dropped out. While they will no longer appear, a lot of other actors will, including Maisie Williams (Arya Stark), Raleigh Ritchie (Greyworm), Nikolaj Coster-Waldau (Jaime Lannister), Isaac Wright (Bran Stark), John Bradley West (Samwell Tarly), Liam Cunningham (Davos Seaworth), and Conleth Hill (Varys).
The panel is scheduled to take place on Friday, July 19, and it will surely be one to watch. Keep checking back with GameSpot for the latest.