Fans of George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire saga have been long been awaiting the arrival of the final two books in the series, The Winds of Winter and A Dream of Spring.
In fact, The Winds of Winter — a followup to 2011’s A Dance with Dragons — was originally scheduled to be published in 2014. Since then, the deadline has continued to shift, with seemingly no end in sight for the book he began writing back in 2010.
During a recent livestream, reported Radio Times, Martin offered an update on the book’s progress, revealing that The Winds of Winter is “creeping forward” while emphasizing it will be the longest book of any in the series.
“It’s a big, big book, I’ve said that before,” he said. “It’s a challenging book. It’s probably gonna be a larger book than any of the previous volumes in the story.
“[A] Dance with Dragons and Storm of Swords are the two largest books in the series, they were both about 1,500 manuscript pages,” he continued, revealing how much remains to be written. “I think this one is going to be longer than that by the time I’m finished with it and I think I’m around three-quarters of the way done, maybe.”
However, Martin cautioned that even when he does finally finish the book, it may not be published immediately.
“And of course, then there’s the issue here of my friends at Random House, when I deliver this monstrous book that will be as big as a dragon, are they going to try to make me cut it in two?” he said. “We’ll find out about that but first I have to finish it, I have to get it all done,” he added.
Martin also explained why, after announcing numerous publication dates over the years only to miss them, he’s reluctant to provide a guesstimate of when the book will be finished.
“I’ve given up making predictions, because people press me and press me: ‘When is it going to be done?’ And I make what I think is the best case estimate, and then stuff happens,” he said.
“Then everybody gets mad that I ‘lied,'” he added. “I’ve never lied about these predictions. They’re the best I can make, but I guess I overestimate my ability to get stuff done, and I underestimate the amount of interruptions and other projects, other demands that will distract me.”