Some good news coming out of 2020: George R.R. Martin says his pandemic lockdown has resulted in his best work yet on his long-awaited novel The Winds of Winter.

Updating his fans on his blog, the Game of Thrones creator says, "I wrote hundreds and hundreds of pages of THE WINDS OF WINTER in 2020. The best year I've had on WOW since I began it. Why? I don't know. Maybe the isolation. Or maybe I just got on a roll. Sometimes I do get on a roll."

Given Martin's last A Song of Ice and Fire book, A Dance with Dragons, came out in 2011 (the same year HBO launched Game of Thrones) and Martin has been working on Winds practically ever since and has written hundreds and hundreds of great pages, that means his new novel is probably just… about… done… ish… right?

Brace yourself for this next part: "I need to keep rolling, though," Martin wrote. "I still have hundreds of more pages to write to bring the novel to a satisfactory conclusion. That's what 2021 is for, I hope."

"I will make no predictions on when I will finish," the author added. "Every time I do, a--holes on the internet take that as a 'promise,' and then wait eagerly to crucify me when I miss the deadline. All I will say is that I am hopeful."

So, it sounds like there's great stuff coming... just not, you know, right away.

Previously, Martin has told EW that his writing is not a strictly linear process. He writes pages. He sometimes keeps what he's written. He often scraps pages or chapters entirely and then starts again. He's aware of fan expectations for Winds and wants the result to meet (and, hopefully, exceed) those expectations.

It should be noted the context of Martin's thoughts was in a post titled "Reflections on a Bad Year" that was otherwise devoted to the pandemic tragedy of 2020. The author lamented that it was "the worst year I have ever lived through" in non-writing respects and that he "lost a number of friends, some very near and dear to me" (so while Martin did include the above Winds update, please don't pick now as a moment to harangue him about the dragon book not being done).

Martin also has other work in the pipeline: HBO is looking to order more Game of Thrones prequels, and various writers are pitching ideas. Plus, the greenlit prequel drama House of the Dragon should begin production in the first half of 2021.

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Game of Thrones

HBO's epic fantasy drama based on George R.R. Martin's novel series A Song of Ice and Fire.

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