Will George Martin finish and publish books 6 and 7 for Game of Thrones?

Martin has had 10+/- years since HBO started filming GOT, and he knew pretty quickly that they were going to continue the series to a conclusion. I read that he gave the series writers his proposed ending and they carried on from there. I think everyone is pretty much on the ball regarding why the books will not finish–he got way too complex plotwise and either didn’t know how to get himself out of it, or he got bored with the whole thing. If he really did intend for the books to continue he’s had 10+/- years to be pounding the keys to his computer and he’s not done that.

I remember reading about a seminar he participated in with Stephen King. The questions got to how do you write a novel, or something to that effect. King came out with “I write every day for X-hours.” Martin was gobsmacked. You mean you write every single day? Somehow he simply could not get his mind around that in order to write a novel you had to sit down and write every day.

That sort of summed everything up for me.

A good ghost writer could tie that all up. I wouldn’t expect it to be perfect, but I wouldn’t expect it to be perfect even if he did it.

I wonder how much he made from the show. Maybe not as much as we think because nobody knew it would be this big so his contract may not as lucrative as other shows or movies. Of course he could have redone the contract after season 1 if the contract allowed that.

Martin insists he’s going forward but, as ever, don’t expect him to provide a timetable: https://www.cnn.com/2019/05/21/entertainment/game-of-thrones-ending-george-rr-martin-blog-trnd/index.html

Before we discuss the unpublished books, let us look at the published books.

First three, 2 years between each book. Solid, well written, good twists and not too much off course.

Fourth book: Written five years later, half the characters people were waiting to hear from (Tyrion, Danerys, Bran) were not in it, some were barely in it (Arya, Jon Snow, Stannis). It was in effect Cersei going mad, Jamie conquers Riverlands, Brienne wanders Riverlands, Sansa hides, Sam goes away, and LOADS more expanded related story from Dorne and Iron Islands. In effect, GRRM had got bored with most of his characters and wrote fillers and wrote about something else: the fake vikings and the fake spanish. But it was a complete book, unlike book five.

Prelude to Fifth book: GRRM was not finished. The TV series had started, but was not yet a success. His publishers in effect forced him, via advances and payments to publish SOMETHING new. He had something which he knocked into shape. But he cut the Sansa ending. He also cut out both the Battle of Ice (in effect the Stannis/Bolton conflict which look solidly that Stannis would win, and not this “20 good men” nonsense) and Battle of Mereen. Parts of these later omissions would bleed out after the fifth book. Something like Hardholme might have been planned too.

Book five: Six years later. Partially completely, but most of the main characters back. A lot of the twists which people enjoyed from the first three. Continuation of the new Dorne stuff, but Arya gets a lot, Tyrion, Danerys, full Stannis and the wall. Theon is assumed dead until this one. Jon stabbed. More Brienne wandering the Riverlands. In general it looks like a much more satisfying book until you realise that a lot planned is missing.

So I’d argue, when is he going to finish the FIFTH book, never mind six and seven.

(Please note I’m working from a wiki, so might not quite be completely accurate on whats in AFFC and DOD).

I stopped watching the show when it caught up to the books. Maybe a foolish move, but based on the negative reaction to the final season, I can live with it. Point is, I REALLY want the series to be finished in novel form.

That said, GRRM admitted his publishers want him to split book 6 (The Winds of Winter) into 2 books because, even though it’s not done, it’s already a mammoth sized beast. He’s actually released quite a few chapters. I predict that even if GRRM continues writing the series, it will not be finished by book 7.

From the horses mouth:

We are never seeing the damn books.

I do think we will get one more because supposedly a lot of it is already written. So unless all that work gets scrapped (which is not unthinkable), it would be at least worth the money to just publish it. But yeah, finishing the series is probably a very long shot.

he was involved in TV shows before he wrote the GOT books. He worked on the show Beauty and the Beast as 1 example.

*Dying of the Light

Windhaven (shared) (from novellas)

Fevre Dream

Armageddon Rag*

A Game of Thrones

So fourth (and a half) rather than third.

Dying if the Light is more a novella, IMHO.

That’s very optimistic. Martin has been EXTREMELY busy in the time since the last book. He is actually a pretty prolific writer. He’s just not writing Winds of Winter, he is writing other stuff. Just because it’s been eight years since the last book doesn’t mean WoW has progressed much, not when he has put out so much other stuff.

He should do kickstarter and say if he raises $1 million he will put out book #6. :slight_smile:

Heck, I got bored with Wheel of Time after only the first book, and I’m not sure I even finished that. It struck me as a phone book, with a novella’s worth of plot.

Wasn’t he just a writer on that? Not making huge, huge money from it, I don’t think.

I think George will attempt to write the books, but I would not put it out of the possibility range for it to be unfinished, but for someone like Brandon Sanderson to come in and finish it.

I wonder if he has tons of notes and outline type stuff if he does die.

Sanderson is on record as saying he has no interest in it, on top of Martin saying he won’t let anyone finish his books. And I don’t think Sanderson would be a good fit anyways, completely different writing style (though I like both authors). He himself likened it to “asking Spielberg to finish a Tarantino film”.

I agree with Snarky Kong that I think we get one more book but that’ll be it, with the rest left unfinished. I am hesitant to say “book 6” because (as Smid points out) the scope keeps changing. The first plan was for a trilogy. Then that grew too big and we were going to have three books separated by a five year gap from the next few books. Then he needed to fill in the gap with one book, that grew into two (and even then some stuff like Stannis’ Battle of Ice didn’t make it in). Wouldn’t surprise me at all if what he had planned to wrap up in two books (Winds of Winter and A Dream of Spring) ends up turning out longer than that.

So I’ll have to disagree with Busy Scissors quite a bit as A Feast for Crows is my second favorite book of the series - at the time I was disappointed that it wasn’t as fast paced and nuts as my favorite book of the series (A Storm of Swords), but on re-reads I realized the masterpiece it was. It is very unlike the other books - each POV chapter is far longer than any other book. There is a lot more introspection. There is a lot more focus on the horrors of war on the smallfolk. I thought it was brilliant. And I really loved the look at Dorne (which are far more scheming than they are portrayed in the show) and the Iron Islands.

I didn’t like A Dance of Dragons as much, but I did like the (f)Aegon storyline and what the invasion of the Stormlands means for Westeros.

I can see Martin finish Book 6 at some point in the next few years (he has enough sample chapters after all). We’ll see after that.

Good point - obviously depends on what his contract with his publisher is, but let’s say (god forbid) he passed tomorrow, would his publisher just gather all the chapters he’s already made publicly available and sell it as “Winds of Winter”?

A ghost writer (or co-author) is the one way we’ll see anything. I see no evidence that GRRM gives a rat’s fart about these characters any more. The world, yes, but not this story.

ETA: Yes, I think the publisher would hire someone to finish anything and continue writing in the “world of GRRM”. Look at what’s happening with Tom Clancy.

I remember when I did management training once, there was a personality test which in effect categorised people into starters, runners and finishers (among other attributes). Some would exclude the others, someone who germinates an idea, and gets it going often finds it difficult to finish it. People who finish things often don’t often have good starter ideas.

I see this as GRRM’s problem. He’s hit his limitations and his skillset struggles with completion. I can imagine if he didn’t limit his books to seven, we’d have two or three more by now. Not very well edited, and expanding much much further, and very unlikely to end. But we’d have something which was a song of ice and fire. With this into about five more books, and an overall completion plan, he’d need someone who would coauthor to get the completion done.

Of course, none of this is going to happen, GRRM is deluded on the idea that he can finish it, and finish it in two books. So he expands his universe in other ways. Writes historical preludes, side projects, talks on lengths about the history (and gets others to write it). It is him. It is his way. I hope at the most one more book. I don’t however expect it at all.