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Given how big TWOW will be should it be released in two volumes?


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He's in denial and has been for years.  The only time I can remember him sounding actually positive about Winds were comments he made when he was quarantined at the cabin in 2020.  Of course, with no meetings, no travel, and most everything in the world on some form of hold, he was able to focus on Winds and make good progress.  But, for whatever reasons, it seems like he can't sustain it, whether that is due to some new 'Meereen knot' or that he doesn't like the ending he gave HBO or whatever reason...it appears to me that when it is in his power to not work on the book due to other projects and distractions--he doesn't.  He can't admit this though, which is why he always sounds so peevish when anyone dares to ask him about the book that he promised would be done before the end of the show, which was, ya know, almost 3 years ago.

 

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16 hours ago, Cas Stark said:

The only time I can remember him sounding actually positive about Winds were comments he made when he was quarantined at the cabin in 2020.  Of course, with no meetings, no travel, and most everything in the world on some form of hold, he was able to focus on Winds and make good progress. 

I'm confused. If 2020 was his best year in terms of progress, why did he think he could finish Winds in 2015/2016? How much had he written before 2016? It seems a bit contradictory.

Edited by Takiedevushkikakzvezdy
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In April 2018, GRRM mentioned in the comments section of NaB that he was getting pressure from his publishers to split Winds into two volumes, which he was resisting. That would indicate he was approaching, or had already surpassed, 1500 MS pages. He probably spent quite a bit of effort trying to condense things. When he mentioned he was rewriting some of the sample chapters in the summer of 2020, I hoped that was part of the process. The Feb 2021 post, "... most productive year, finished hundreds of pages, hundreds more to go", seemed to indicate that he gave up condensing, and if he was going to run over 1500 MS pages he might as well expand to his heart's content.

Short version = indecisiveness and changed plans led to a lot of wasted effort.

As for 2015/16, as of Oct 1, 2015, he thought he could finish by the end of the year. He must have had around 1200 pages done. His top pace seems to be 50 pages/month, which he can sustain for about six months when the writing is going well. Then he started making changes, probably pretty deep in the story. He also seemed to spend time in 2016-18 wandering down dead ends. (Remember that "plot Twist" he announced, which he likely changed afterward?)

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Another thing to consider is that HBO would probably prefer that Winds and Dream never get published at all. If GRRM's version of ASOIAF ever sees the light of day, the show will look even worse than it already does. For them, keeping George busy working on new stuff for them is a double win.

As to the OP, if it needs to be two volumes, so be it. The two battles plus other chapters that were originally planned for Dance are going to take up around 250 MS pages anyway. GRRM started Winds in the hole by that much from the beginning.

Edited by Ibbison from Ibben
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Speculation is pretty moot at this point. The idea that the book might be intended as a two volume book is ridiculous to me. If George had sufficient pages to publish a 1,000 pages book it would be published. The only scenario in which this wouldn't be the case is if there was a vast imbalance with the POVs, say, only two finished Dany chapters compared to eleven or fifteen Jaime chapters. He could not possibly publish the book if crucial plotlines were not advancing at all.

After all, we won't get a repetition of the mess that was AFfC/ADwD where we had a split between POVs.

The very idea that George would write and write until he reached a certain plot point which was supposed to be a part of the novel 'The Winds of Winter' in his mind (say, the fall of the Wall) is ridiculous in light of how the series developed so far. AGoT was to end with the Red Wedding, not Robb's coronation. ADwD was to depict Daenerys' invasion of Westeros and/or whatever the Second Dance of the Dragons will be, not the journey of various characters to Daenerys who is stuck at the end of the world.

TWoW will end at whatever point the overall story reaches when George has about 1,500 pages covering all the POVs he wants to show up in the book.

Neither of the involved parties has any interest to postpone the publication of that book. I mean, just go back and look at the weirdo climaxes of ADwD. Most plotlines didn't get proper endings ... but they didn't care. Nobody said to George: 'Can't you continue the KL plot to include the trials of the queens people are waiting for since 2005?' or 'We are only going to publish this book with either or both the battles you have the characters to prepare for.'

In fact, they took out the Arianne chapters and some of the finished (pre-) battle chapters like Theon 1, etc.

The idea that anyone would say to George: 'Take all the time in the world for TWoW' makes no sense at all. Nor would George himself not put out the book as soon as he could. It is pretty clear that he is pretty depressed about how much time this is taking. They put out FaB mainly because George wanted to finally publish another book.

And if he takes detours to write another volume of FaB while he cannot continue TWoW I'm not complaining. I do want to read that book.

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21 minutes ago, Lord Varys said:

The idea that anyone would say to George: 'Take all the time in the world for TWoW' makes no sense at all.

The thing is that nobody can pressure GRRM to work on/publish Winds anymore, something that was possible even as late as 2011.

IIRC, he wanted another year to incorporate the two battles into ADWD, but the publishers forced him to put it out in 2011, to coincide with the premiere of the show. Now he has enough clout to do whatever he wants. The only ones who can influence him are HBO, and they don't care about ASOIAF anymore.

Edited by Takiedevushkikakzvezdy
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25 minutes ago, Lord Varys said:

The very idea that George would write and write until he reached a certain plot point […] is ridiculous in light of how the series developed so far.

In light of the books so far, agreed. But I wouldn’t be sure that hasn’t changed. I believe it must have been Anne Groell who confirmed in an interview that GRRM insisted on bringing aDwD up to the Ides of Marsh, to have a climax to cap off that story line. He pushed back on breaking the book off at a random point even then, but wasn’t able to get the battles in.

Obviously this is speculation, but I can imagine GRRM not wanting to keep on fractally splitting the planned remaining plot into more and more books. Every publication sets him back months on writing. I think there’s a possibility that he wants to hit the climactic plot points he intends for tWoW.

If tWoW falls apart into two novels written consecutively (i.e. not volumes finished concurrently), then chances of aDoS making it diminish drastically.

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22 minutes ago, Takiedevushkikakzvezdy said:

The thing is that nobody can pressure GRRM to work on/publish Winds anymore, something that was possible even as late as 2011.

They couldn't really pressure him even back in 2011.

22 minutes ago, Takiedevushkikakzvezdy said:

IIRC, he wanted another year to incorporate the two battles into ADWD, but the publishers forced him to put it out in 2011, to coincide with the premiere of the show. Now he has enough clout to do whatever he wants. The only ones who can influence him are HBO, and they don't care about ASOIAF anymore.

What we know is that both battles would have meant another 200-300 or more manuscript pages, in addition to the Arianne, Arya, and Sansa material that was taken out, and they decided not to do that.

Sure enough, we cannot really predict where exactly the story of TWoW will end or what's going to happen in the second half of the book - I vividly remember how surprised I was about Aegon's decision to invade without Daenerys. I didn't see that coming and we couldn't predict that - nor in what order the guys showed up in Meereen or what Quentyn and the others would do there.

But it would still make no sense to expect that George would write and write and write for years and years just to avoid the scenario we got at the end of ADwD. Nor do I think something like that is very likely considering that many POVs seem to hook up in TWoW, indicating that whatever climaxes there are in the second half of TWoW are not going to be as drawn out as those in ADwD.

12 minutes ago, Roughspun said:

In light of the books so far, agreed. But I wouldn’t be sure that hasn’t changed. I believe it must have been Anne Groell who confirmed in an interview that GRRM insisted on bringing aDwD up to the Ides of Marsh, to have a climax to cap off that story line. He pushed back on breaking the book off at a random point even then, but wasn’t able to get the battles in.

Yes, the Ides of Marsh was something George wanted to have in ADwD. And I guess if the battles had been in there, the sequence of events would have been somewhat different, with us getting the battle first and then having Jon's murder thereafter. Although I'd expect that there would be still some kind of battle cliffhanger, with the reader not knowing whether all (POV) character survived (sort of like we got it for with Davos at the end of ACoK).

12 minutes ago, Roughspun said:

Obviously this is speculation, but I can imagine GRRM not wanting to keep on fractally splitting the planned remaining plot into more and more books. Every publication sets him back months on writing. I think there’s a possibility that he wants to hit the climactic plot points he intends for tWoW.

The possibility is there, of course, but I'd consider it very low. Especially since it is 2022 now, and ADwD was published in 2011! At that point, you want to get the book out in decent form, you do not try to make it a super ideal book. And, of course, you would not write, say, 1,000 or 2,000 more manuscript pages intentionally if you don't need them for the publication of that book. You can reach a specific plot point in the next book, after all. Or in the book after that, like it was with the Red Wedding.

George still likely wrote much more than will be published - multiple drafts, abandoned or cut chapters, and also chapters that will eventually be published in a later book. But he would not intentionally do this, since it will only be decided during editing whether a given chapter makes it into the book or not.

Keep in mind that 'Mercy' was originally the first Arya chapter written after ASoS was complete. That it will only be published in TWoW is due to the fact that George kept writing chapters and chapters taking place before Mercy. Something like that did happen in the other stories, too, in part (but not only) because the five year gap was abandoned.

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20 hours ago, Cas Stark said:

 There was absolutely nothing in his comments to give even a glimmer of hope that Winds will even come out this year or, probably, ever.

Sad. 

 

Basically how I felt when reading it. There's nothing anyone is going to do about it, but this is the way it is. He is clearly very much set in his ways and who knows, even if he did try and focus exclusively on Winds, it might not go any faster. He's just not getting it done, is all you can conclude at this point.

Its become one of many things he wants to do, he doesnt even give any kind of update on how far along he is, or when it could *conceivably* come out. Which means its not due this year at least, we have to count that out. But similarly also zero idea if it ever will.

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1 hour ago, Lord Varys said:

But it would still make no sense to expect that George would write and write and write for years and years just to avoid the scenario we got at the end of ADwD.

I've said this before, but I think one of the reasons Winds has taken so long is that GRRM is hellbent on finishing ASOIAF in seven volumes, even though more books are probably needed to resolve all the different plotlines.

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I was once certain that Winds would come out, then I was about 70% sure, it went down to 60% and then 50%, and then back up when he sounded hopeful and motivated at the beginning of the pandemic.  Now, with his busy, TV schedule, and his own negative categorization of his progress this year 'less is not none' which suggests that less is pretty close to none,  I would say there is about a 30% chance Winds ever comes out and 0% a 7th book is published. Why he behaves this way, working on secondary and collateral material, I could only speculate.

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George is definitely overwhelmed by the fact that his life's work caught up when he was already quite old and he also writes in a way that is not efficient for an old man sadly.

I am more dissapointed in the fact that he doesn't truly face the situtation and have people help him. I mean, he already has people that are trained in writing for his world, they are the same people that worked in TWoIaF [they are a couple of authors if I am not mistaken, our mods(?)]. Ask them to write the general story together, put the pieces down in a room and fill the dots together. Then he can sit alone and write the book, like he did for FaB, a much easier work. If you actually think of it TWoIaF is the general script for FaB and George wrote that pretty fast because of this "mold" technique.

This also gives him a "backup" drive for his legace because if something happens to him before he manages to finish this work these people will be his co-wroters by that point and will be able to finish his work quite efficiently and successfuly because they will know very well how he is thinking.

Edited by Dreadscythe95
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4 hours ago, Takiedevushkikakzvezdy said:

I've said this before, but I think one of the reasons Winds has taken so long is that GRRM is hellbent on finishing ASOIAF in seven volumes, even though more books are probably needed to resolve all the different plotlines.

I don't think that's very likely. George seems to have this weird tendency to assume that a story is going to be told on fewer pages than it truly needs, but he doesn't seem to be very determined to stick to a particular number of books.

He only decides to add books when it becomes obvious, i.e., for instance, when he decided to publish ADwD in two volumes. For ASoIaF I'd expect him to announce that the story won't be finished in two volumes only after the publication of TWoW or perhaps even only during the writing process of ADoS.

Again, it would be detrimental for all parties involved if they postponed the publication of TWoW for some esoteric reason. Both George and his publishers would lose a shitload of money.

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25 minutes ago, Lord Varys said:

Again, it would be detrimental for all parties involved if they postponed the publication of TWoW for some esoteric reason. Both George and his publishers would lose a shitload of money.

Judging by GRRM's written blog post, we won't see Winds anytime soon. For whatever reason, esoteric or not, they are postponing publication.

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2 minutes ago, Takiedevushkikakzvezdy said:

Judging by GRRM's written blog post, we won't see Winds anytime soon. For whatever reason, esoteric or not, they are postponing publication.

Because the book isn't done yet.

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Sadder still, I think, is how this view is really starting to solidify throughout the fandom. Even among the fans, few seem to seriously believe we will see Winds, and almost none have hope for the completion of the saga. Even these forums seem to be permeated with the view that ASoIaF will remain an unfinished tale and that the many mysteries will never have an official answer. The hype balloon is deflated. Future expectations are grim. At this point, I think I'm just checking these forums out of habit.

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