With the final season of Game of Thrones begins tonight, but author Martin is lamenting that the TV show overtook where he was in A Song of Ice and Fire’s storyline.
Speaking on 60 minutes, the 70-year-old said: “I published a fifth book [A Dance With Dragons] in 2011 when the series was just going on the air, so I was like five books ahead. I was completely confident that I would have the entire series finished. Winds of Winter and A Dream of Spring would be out before they got to them.
Host Anderson Cooper pointed out that Martin once said he would find it alarming if the series overtook the books’ narrative.
Martin responded: “Yes, it was a blow when the series caught up. I didn’t think it would happen.”
Martin continued: “I wished I finished it four years ago. I wished it was finished now. But it’s not.
“And I’ve had dark nights of the soul where I’ve pounded my head against the keyboard and said, ‘God, will I ever finish this? The show is going further and further forward and I’m falling further and further behind. What the hell is happening here? I’ve got to do this.’
“I just got the [Fire and Blood] copy and, holding it in my hand, it’s a beautiful book. The illustrations by Doug Wheatley are great.
“It’s been a long while since I had a new Westeros book and nobody knows that as well as I do.”
In December he posted on his blog: “I know you want WINDS, and I am going to give it to you. But I am delighted that you stayed with me for this one as well.
“Your patience and unflagging support means the world to me. Enjoy the read [of Fire & Blood]. Me, I am back in my fortress of solitude, and back in Westeros.”
“It won’t be tomorrow, and it won’t be next week, but you will get the end of A SONG OF ICE AND FIRE.”