Oh George. What are you doing, buddy? Why are you making all of this so hard on yourself? Fans of Mr. R.R. Martin’s epic fantasy series, A Song of Ice and Fire (source material for HBO’s Game of Thrones) have long known the story to be a seven booked thing. But according to his editor, Anne Groell, everyone’s favorite overachieving epic fantasy master may just end up writing eight books instead of seven. Say WHAT?
Over on SUVUDU — a digital community for writers, bloggers, and fans of fantasy, science fiction, comic books and all things delightfully nerdy — Groell did a Q&A with members, breaking the news that the song of ice and fire, originally a trilogy (ha ha ha!), may end up being an even bigger behemoth than already was intended.
I begin to wonder—though 7 is what we currently have under contract. I remember when he called me, years and years back, to confess that his little trilogy was…well…no longer a trilogy. He predicted four books. I said Seven Books for Seven Kingdoms. Then he said five books. I said Seven Books for Seven Kingdoms. Then he went to six. I said… Well, you get it. Finally, we were on the same page. Seven Books for Seven Kingdoms. Good. Only, as I recently learned while editing THE WORLD OF ICE AND FIRE (another awesome thing you must buy when it comes out!), there are really technically eight kingdoms, all having to do with who has annexed what when Aegon the Conqueror landed in Westeros. So, maybe eight books for Seven Kingdoms would be okay. Also, he has promised me that, when he finally wraps this great beast us, I can publish the five page letter outlining the bare bones of the “trilogy.”
Listen, we’re not complaining — by any stretch — we want to stay in Westeros as long as possible. But considering how long it takes him to write each mind-bogglingly long novel, in addition to the pressures of the television series catching up, is an eighth book really such a good idea? Is it even feasible?
Well, according to Martin the plan is still to hit that lucky seven. Buuuut as is usually the case with anything original (particularly in the hands of this guy), you really never know until it’s done. In an interview conducted with Entertainment Weekly on Tuesday, Martin explained that his “plan is to finish in seven, but my original plan was to finish in three. I write the stories and they grow. I deal with certain things and sometimes I find myself not at the end of a story.”
Still, he remains firm in his commitment seven books — so we know, at least, that we’re not getting any less, at least. “My plan right now is still seven. But first I have to finish Book Six. Get back to me when I’m half-way through Book Seven and then maybe I’ll tell you something more meaningful.”
What do you think? Are you betting on seven or eight? Jump down to the comments and let us hear it.