It turns out that Paste is not the only one to pester George R.R. Martin for news on his forthcoming novel The Winds of Winter, which will be the sixth book of the A Song of Ice and Fire series. No, we’re not alone—readers of his blog are on the case as well.
In response to a long post about the New York Giants—Martin is a big NFL fan—a devotee going by the name J. Snow laid it on the line in a comment titled “Really George”:
As i stated in my last attempt, i respect you immensely and do not want you to rush or release anything untill you are completely satisfied with it.
That being said, it has been a whole year since we have received an updated. You have placated our hunger with another superb sample ch. (the Forsaken), and for that, we are grateful. But unless you want to be bombarded with im’s like this, i would suggest another updated.
Even if its as simple as, ‘not done yet, but ive made progress( or not) ’, or ’ it’ll be out this year (or not)’. Anything(or not). Either way, have a great new year, and thank you for, imo, the best fantasy series out there.
This is not a new tactic, but amazingly, Martin actually responded. Behold the words of the man himself, which represent the first speculation we’ve had about the WoW release date in over a year:
You really think statements like that would make a difference? Ah, you sweet summer child. I have years of experience with this that tells me otherwise.
But okay, I will try it your way.
Not done yet, but I’ve made progress. But not as much as I hoped a year ago, when I thought to be done by now.
I think it will be out this year. (But hey, I thought the same thing last year).
So there you have it: He thinks the book will come out in 2017, which means, even taking a rushed publication schedule into account, that he’d have to be done with the final draft by about early September, latest. This is far from definitive, as you can tell by his tone, but as someone who egged him on for exactly this kind of update, let me be one of the first to say: Thank you, George.