First of all, I sincerely thank you. I became a member of this forum years ago, but since I realized that the members were active recently (nobody was writing at that time, I left too) I started to write again. Ever since I came back I observed a weird form of discussion on this forum (not saying for everyone); Let me just say that it is not a healthy shape in general. That's why I was very happy to see your healthy method. I find it more enjoyable to discuss with people who think differently because we can have longer conversations.
Of course, if I'm not a burden to you, I'll ask for something. As you can imagine, English is not my native language, so I can understand wrong some of the things you wrote. Please correct me when you think something like this is happening.
Now what I understand correctly is that the basis of your thinking basically rests on three things(of course according to the arguments I have presented).
1- Age gap
2- Arya is the only positive woman Jon knows about(?) So naturally he thinks about her all the time(?)
3- The fact that the author continues to keep some things does not show that he continues to keep the love plot; example; as the main character Tyrion's plot has changed so much (?)
Now ... As you said, Martin discovers many characters and stories along the way. This can be a very troublesome situation for a gardener writer. Yet we know that Martin knows the end of the story of all the Stark children and the great Lannisters; We also know that characters like Jon, Arya, and Tyrion wrote as planned from the very beginning. He said he knew who was going to die and who will marry.
( It is a fact that not everything was explained in the letter. For example, Cersei and his other children are not mentioned, but we can infer between the lines that they exist. Therefore, we cannot know exactly how many of the additions you mentioned are not or are in the first place. It is a closed box for us. For example, Meereen ... While ASOIAF was 3 volumes, Dany was coming in volume 2. Did Martin have planned 3 city conquests in the first phase or not? Not like now but a quick one. Because if you pay attention, the conquest of the first three cities in book 3 happened quickly in one book, but then Dany decided to stay in Meereen because the volume of the book increased and naturally the story expanded. Perhaps it was not in the plan at all, and again, city conquests were added as the story expanded. We do not know. We can't be sure.)
Let's remember some of his statements
In general, we see that GRRM sticks to the storyline and even to the plot in his explanations. In my Outline review article, I have already examined each of them and stated how and which ones have changed.
Tyrion example; Tyrion's storline is exactly the same. Tyrion first fought on the side of his own family and was betrayed by them, establishing a close relationship with some of the Stark children, and then becoming enemies of his own family and changing sides ... Is there any deviation in this storyline? No.
I'm sure it caught your attention, I marked it with bold already ... Martin says there are no deviations in the plot in his statement, but adds that he has changed some of his plans. So we can see it as the official explanation of why we don't see all of the plot mentioned in the letter in the books, kind of.
We continue with Tyrion. Tyrion was not married to Sansa in the first place. He made friends with Arya and fell in love with her, fighting for her with Jon. Tyrion fought Robb and then burned Winterfell. Finally, he moved to the Stark side.
So a significant part of Tyrion's plot has changed, but his arc is the same. The reason for this is two; "other plot inspiration" and "forced changes in the expanding story."
Despite that, he fought alongside the Stark army alongside his family, plotted ... He befriended Jon, not Arya (probably the most accurate plot, because for Dance 2 and more, Tyrion's relationship with all dragons is important, and only with Jon having close friendship, it will be much more important in the future). Tyrion was betrayed by Jaime (and other family members) and waged war on his own family, changing sides. This cannot be presented as a 100% claim (we do not write the book after all, we cannot say 100% to any claim), but I think it would be correct to think that Tyrion will be with the Starks as well as the Targ in the future. Since this part of Tyrion's arc is not yet complete, we can offer many possibilities. It is noteworthy that Tyrion marries Sansa and Sansa marries a Lannister in every way. So there is a reason why Tyrion was attached to the Starks and Sansa's marital status was locked up by the Lannisters. I will not comment on Sansa, but from the point of view of Tyrion ... it can be predicted that Tyrion's connection with the Starks in some way from the first plan will have a significant effect on the story.
I hope I didn't explain it complicated. :I
So in general the Tyrion example shows us this. In general, we can see that GRRM holds every plot that will affect characters' arc.
That's exactly why GRRM says "I know what Jon, Arya and Tyrion's arc will be from the very beginning", there is no change in this matter, only some plots change.
Tyrion has no love for Arya. It is healthy to assume that this was not a crucial plot for Tyrion, because Martin changed that. Of course, if Tyrion is not planning to do anything in the future when he meets the Starks again ... I think this possibility may still be possible (because Thysa's description is somewhat reminiscent of Arya, and also what happened in the Arya and dwarf scene in Mercy POV seemed to be a sign of that, but it could just a wave to the old idea), but it's a low probability for me. Still as you can see i cannot ignore some possible signs.
Here we can discuss what effect a love between Jon and Arya might have for their arc and the significance of this influence. Based on this, we can offer some ideas on whether Martin has decided to keep this love plan. BUT! As a fandom, we can discuss which plot causes what kind of arc change, but as a result, it is not 100% certain as everyone will only write their own predictions.
Arguing basically doesn't make much sense, as different points of view will produce different results. Because there is no certainty of the conclusion to be drawn, it is all possible, what matters is what the author thinks and wants. We cannot both know if the love for Jon-Arya is from "changing plans" since we cannot reach a definitive conclusion on the possibilities, and it may be healthy for us to admit that we cannot definitely claim it. Of course you "you think it changed, I think not." But as I said, if we start talking about this arc-plot effect, we cannot come to a conclusion.
It might be better if I say what I wanted to say at the end now. The current discussion is generally based on "probability" and "story base" thoughts. I call this "story math". The mathematics of the story is pregnant with many plots (I don't know if there is such an idiom in English, but there is an idiom called "pregnant" in Turkish. This means that the x issue can cause many events to happen, but which one is not certain.)
Therefore, some of our comments that we will make based on story math will not be wrong basically.
We just don't know which boy Martin will choose. Whether either party's interpretation is justified will depend entirely on Martin's choice. This leads us to a new dead end, right?
Some of my friends often comment only on the basis of story math and form theories. But Martin said something. Foreshadowings and signs. You can comment with story math for some writers, because not every writer uses foreshadowing and markup, but Martin uses it extensively. According to him, if we follow them and combine them correctly, we can predict some events. I even heard that some fans had guessed the end of the story correctly.
If I remember correctly, there was a lot of foreshadowing in the first book as well, he regretted that. I passed it all, in the first book, it's the sign of the end of the story (somewhere in the first half). In other words, we have to make interpretations by looking at them while creating and commenting on the mathematics of the story. I gave a link where a member showed a lot of possible foreshadowing over the course of 5 books. I think a theory should be discussed along with these.
1- Age Gap - 2 - Arya is the only positive woman Jon knows about(?) So naturally he thinks about her all the time(?)
This young age issue is very troubling among fandom, it is very understandable. The characters are very young. Martin had already wanted a swift transition at first, but he couldn't. So he came up with the idea of a 5-year gap, but he did not succeed in this. He wanted to use 5 years for Arya and Bran to grow up. Of course in another interview she had said about all the children and the dragon, but she often said she wanted Arya and Bran to grow up. So all the children in general, Arya and Bran in particular ... He even said that adult characters could not expect Arya to enter puberty. Elsewhere, "If it has to conquer the world at age 12, so be it." he said.
So age has been a bit of a problem for Martin as well, but he has been looking for a solution to this. The thing is, in a story that he planned in 6 volumes and intends to make a 5-year gap, you cannot imagine that he gave up the plots that he planned and gave signs in the beginning because he could not solve the age problem while 2-3 books are left to the end of the story.
Martin said he would not give up on his plans he had given his hints. If he does it, it would make him a liar, and he is not a liar, he said.
But don't think that Martin is giving up about this age thing completely.
BTW, I didn't understand those Tyrion-Aerys and Jon and Arya's 20-year-old interpretation????
As we approach this age issue, we interpret according to today's moral taboos and assume the same in the story, but it is not. This is the wrong approach.
Jon is 16, Arya is 11. In the next book he will be 17, Arya will be 12. Maybe she will be 13 in the end, we do not know.
I argued about this age issue with someone else, so I'm hoping it won't be a problem if I copy and paste my comment.
When we look at the story, love and marriage at a young age often appear in the history of asoiaf. In fact, it occurs in the middle ages of our universe. When you enter adolescence in the Middle Ages, in the laws and social perception of that period, you are young people who have reached the age of marriage, not children. If you try to judge that period with the perception of today, it would be wrong. Perhaps 100 years from now, people will see 18-year-olds marrying is immoral. Maybe the age of marriage for them will be 20. We cannot know this from today. But different periods bring different perceptions and conditions. We have to look at each age from its own window. Historians know this very well. As a result, we have to overcome this age problem in the books. "Imagine their age a few years older," said Martin. I tend to do it like this, I recommend it.
Back to ASOIAF ... In Asoiaf, girls bloom at the age of 12. This indicates that the age of marriage has come. There are also much younger marriages. These are political of course. But these are happening. So the people of westeros accept this in their minds and don't see it as immoral.
For example; When Jon heard about the marriage, did he find it immoral for Ramsay's age to marry 11-year-old Arya? No, he just hated it, but not because of age. Or the marriage of Sansa and Tyrion? In fact, he did not comment on that at all. Well, did Cat or Robb comment on that? Yes, it's true they hated this marriage, but considering the age gap between two years old, did they take it immoral? No. If I remember correctly, one of Alysanne's daughters married an elderly Arryn at a very young age. Nobody called it immoral. The girl Quentyn falls in love with is 12 years old. When she blossomed, the prince wanted to marry her. As far as I remember, the girl had done something of her own to attract the prince's attention.
Arya will be 12 years old in the new book(at least). Martin announced that she was going to go to puberty. Reading Mercy POV, no one cannot tell that Arya is sexually incapable of using her femininity or reaching sexual maturity.
If you remember Sansa POV, LF told Sansa that marriages with a difference in age could be better. Sansa also accepted this and thought positively. What I want to show here is that such things are acceptable in that culture. How many age difference is there between Rhaegar and Lyanna? At least 5-7. No one commented on Rhaegar's kidnapping a much younger girl, they commented on other matters. So I think you need to put the age issue aside, you're not talking about a valid cultural perception for asoiaf. This is our cultural perception, today's taboo. Today we call anyone who has sex with a 14-year-old girl pedophilia, but there was no such perception 100-150 years ago.
But look, I find it a bit hypocritical to suggest that Arya will have an affair with Gendry when the subject of age is mentioned. "There's a 5 year difference between Jon and Arya, so that can't be!" Then why do people think that Arya might be with a man older than her? Do you know the age difference between Arya and Gendry? 5! Arya and Jon? 5! So? The age difference is an obstacle for Jon and Arya, but ok for Arya and Gendry?
We're not commenting that Jon fell in love with Arya's memory. We say that all these events, these words and actions, are a foreshadowing from the author. Sibling love is of course a taboo. Well, that's the point in the story. Didn't you read Outline? This love between the two is pain for them. Why is that? Because they think of each other as real brothers, when they learn that they are cousins, they relax. This is one of the things that makes this love interesting in the story. (If you can choose the people to fall in love with, tell us your secret. So that nobody will suffer love. )
Jon's remembrance of Arya by looking at Ygritte, just You can't interpret because she is his only surviving relative and that Arya is the only positive female figure, it is very meaningless. The fact that these two characters think of each other so often has nothing to do with Melisandre. How did you interpret this, I can't be sure. Let's say, Melisandre is responsible for this in the 5th book, who is responsible for the other books? This is an unbasic and misinterpretation.
Since the first book, Jon and Arya often think of each other. Arya wishes she would be with Jon while still in KL; Jon wishes the same ... Arya's laughter is the thing what Jon warms his inside in the cold weather when he left WF. Both think each other in abundance as the text allows. Since Jon learns that Arya is alive and is going to marry Ramsay, he thinks of her more often throughout the book, not because of Melisandre. Do you need someone else to think of someone you love and worry about in your life? Does this make sense? Jon thinks about Arya even as he dies.
Actually, this is a very nice parallel with Jon's dad. Why is that? Rhaegar died for Lyanna, and he was thinking of Lyanna as he died. Jon also died for Arya, and he was thinking of Arya as he died. That's what I call parallelism! We have to admit, this is really a sign. At least it's fair to admit that it's a thought-provoking and remarkable detail.
After all, what's the point of thinking of their each other this way in a fictional story? Shouldn't you think about this? I'm a writer, I don't write too many scenes to show that the two characters to sibling love each other. No one doubts Robb and Jon's love and close bond for each other, but have 40-50 scenes written about the two? No. Why? Because the current number is enough. But if I'm going to write love about two characters, then I'll write 40-50 scenes over 5 books. To give clues to this, I have to do this anyway so when this happens, people shouldn't say "Where did this come from?"
Did I get this positive woman thing wrong? Because this comment sounds more weird. So a really weird comment for me. Please do not take me wrong. Why? We are talking about someone who compares the body of his lover with that of his sister.
Yes, Arya's only "positive" figure in the female character around Jon. Other figures, Cat-Sansa and others ... They treat Jon badly or coldly. This causes Jon's female taste to be women like Arya. Jon likes women who act like Arya. Remember what Jon thinks of Mycella, he doesn't like traditional ladies. This is why Jon felt emotional towards Ygritte and flirted with Val. It is obvious that he likes her. That's why when Jon saw the girl, he immediately remembered Arya, because Ygritte's not only personality but even her hair messiness looks like Arya. But if these women were like other traditional women, they would never be of interest to Jon. Anyway, the taste of male-female of all of us, begins to take shape when we are children.
But I would never compare the body of a man I fell in love with to the bodies of my father or brothers! It's vile! Even this thought bothers me. Normal nobody does that! Did you? Jon falls in love with a woman, has sex with her, and compares that woman's body to Arya's body from the very beginning. No matter where we read these scenes from the story, it's odd and nauseous for everyone. Something really disgusting.
I guess you think Arya will be headed to RL when she returns? So there is also a "time" problem? I do not think like this. https://asoiaf.westeros.org/index.php?/topic/158500-aryas-return-to-westeros-to-where/ Also, the time problem is more likely to be with Dany, as you would accept that they will both get together halfway through the last book at the earliest (assuming Dance 2 will be between Aegon-Dany). After that, the dawn war… well. Jon has spent more time with Arya in the past, and when she comes back, she will spend more time with Jon in every way. So the relationship between the two already has an infrastructure, it will just turn into something else.
You are 100% sure that there will be a relationship between Jon and Val, I have never confirmed such a theory. Martin too. A possible relationship between Jon and Dany cannot be a parallel to that of Rhaegar and Lyanna. Whose son is Jon? Rhaegar! Such a comment could have been made if Jon was Ned's son; Ice and fire met again ... But Jon is a Targ. It is both ice and fire. He is Rhaegar's son. If Jon and Arya are together, then it will be the way you say. Rhaegar's son Jon Targ, Arya who looks like Lyanna ... Rhaegar and Lyanna become a continuation of his love.
I understood the basics of your thinking, if I understood correctly what you wrote. But as you will see, I see a lot of empty point in your thinking, so I had objections.
I'm sorry if I used the wrong word. Thank you.