George R.R. Martin broke his silence on the Game of Thrones finale by praising showrunners David Benioff and Dan Weiss and giving some hints on how his upcoming books will be different.
First, Martin’s post on his blog is called “An Ending,” which is telling, because it’s making it clear the GoT finale is not, in his mind, The Ending.
Martin thanks many people associated with the show, including, “David Benioff, Dan Weiss, Bryan Cogman (the third head of the dragon, as I said in the recent Vanity Fair piece about him), and of course the great team at HBO, headed by Richard Plepler. Any other network, and Game of Thrones would not have been what it became. Most other networks, this series never gets made at all.”
As for his upcoming books, he added, “The Winds of Winter is very late, I know, I know, but it will be done. I won’t say when, I’ve tried that before, only to burn you all and jinx myself… but I will finish it, and then will come A Dream of Spring. How will it all end? I hear people asking. The same ending as the show? Different? Well… yes. And no. And yes. And no. And yes. And no. And yes. I am working in a very different medium than David and Dan, never forget. They had six hours for this final season. I expect these last two books of mine will fill 3000 manuscript pages between them before I’m done… and if more pages and chapters and scenes are needed, I’ll add them.”
Plus, Martin noted there are many minor characters he’s introduced over the years that were not in the show that still have roles to play in his novels: “If nothing else, the readers will learn what happened to Jeyne Poole, Lady Stoneheart, Penny and her pig, Skahaz Shavepate, Arianne Martell, Darkstar, Victarion Greyjoy, Ser Garlan the Gallant, Aegon VI, and a myriad of other characters both great and small that viewers of the show never had the chance to meet. And yes, there will be unicorns… of a sort…Book or show, which will be the ‘real’ ending? It’s a silly question…How about this? I’ll write it. You read it. Then everyone can make up their own mind, and argue about it on the internet.”
Martin also ran down a rather extensive list of other projects he’s working on, including five shows in development at HBO (not all GoT related), two shows at Hulu, one at History Channel and a number of feature film projects. “There are these short films I am hoping to make, adaptations of classic stories by one of the most brilliant, quirky, and original writers our genre has ever produced. I’ve consulted on a video game out of Japan.” Plus his popular immersive art experience Meow Wolf.
One of the great ironies of the show vs. books, is that Game of Thrones fans for the last two seasons have complained the show is moving way too fast (Martin himself had hoped for at least 10 seasons of the show). But at the same time, fans complain that Martin is writing much too slow — his last A Song of Ice and Fire novel was published in 2011, the year GoT debuted. For this intensely difficult-to-write saga, an ideal pace of creation seems difficult to obtain.
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