Raise your hand if you are angry with Martin for failing to meet a television deadline.
Notices a lone hand in the back.
You’re not a writer, are you? No? Put your hand down.
Don’t get me wrong. I love the Game of Thrones television series. In fact, I made the mistake of watching the T.V. show before reading the books, and now I can’t get into the books (I’m weird like that.) So yeah, I haven’t read more than a couple of chapters of Martin’s series. But I still can’t get upset with him for failing to meet his television deadlines.
As a writer, I know that a book takes its own time to be written. If you try to force it, you end up with a final book that reads like the 3rd book in The Hunger Games trilogy.
Before I go any farther, let me just assure you that I am NOT trashing The Hunger Games. In fact, I loved The Hunger Games. The first book was amazing. I became so engrossed in the characters in that first book, my first reaction to learning that Katniss would be returning to the games in Catching Fire was, “I can’t do this again.”
I almost didn’t read book two because the idea of living through the Hunger Games experience with these characters for a second time was almost too much for me. But I read it anyway because book one was so, so good.
And then there was Mockingjay.
My impression of this third book was that the author was either being pressured by an editor to meet a deadline or she was just sick of writing the series and wanted to get to the end of it already. The whole thing was forced. I got the feeling that the story was not allowed to develop in its own time. I honestly wish I’d stopped reading after book one.
Which brings me back to Game of Thrones. George R. R. Martin has been working on this latest novel for quite some time. So what? So he wants to get it right. Good for him!
Will readers be disappointed? If they watch the series, probably yes. There will be some spoilers.
Will we be angry with Martin for failing to meet the deadline that would allow the book to be published before the series airs? I hope not. After all, chances are the books will be around long after the television series has been forgotten. The books need to be given the time they need to develop naturally. Let’s give them – and him – the time they need to get it right.