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Not a Q&A

Ever since George R. R. Martin announced the release date of Fire & Blood a couple of weeks ago, reactions to the news have ranged from supportive to... very much not supportive. On Not a Blog especially, readers have taken to the comments section to voice their opinions. Surprisingly, GRRM has responded to some of these comments directly. While he is unlikely to satisfy those who are most upset by the wait for The Winds of Winter, GRRM does his best to sell Fire & Blood, clarify what he believes to be misconceptions about his works and obligations, and even answer some speculative questions about A Song of Ice and Fire. All in all, it amounts to a fairly effective Q&A session, almost as good as one we might get were we to attend an actual convention with GRRM himself.

Of course, scouring through the comments section on Not a Blog -- any comments section really -- can be hazardous to one's health, so I've attempted to collect and collate most of GRRM's comments for you below, alongside paraphrased versions of the questions that prompted GRRM's responses. (I've also referenced the original questions, too, so feel free to read those to see the full context and color of the commenters.)

External Link TWOW still months away, more GRRM works to come. Earlier tonight, George R. R. Martin gave us a rare update on his writing progress. Let's begin with The Winds of Winter, which probably has the most interest among our readers, but gets the least substantial update here. According to GRRM, the next novel of A Song of Ice and Fire is still "months away," but it's neither as far nor as close as some reports seem to indicate. In short, GRRM doesn't yet know when TWOW will be finished and he warns us not to trust anyone who says otherwise.

GRRM does believe that we'll get at least one original work from the world of Westeros in 2018, whether it be The Winds of Winter or a brand new history book (or possibly both). The history book in question is Fire and Blood, a more detailed examination of the Targaryen kings. GRRM explains that the previously-announced book will now actually come in two volumes:

We have so much material that it's been decided to publish the book in two volumes. The first of those will cover the history of Westeros from Aegon's Conquest up to and through the regency of the boy king Aegon III (the Dragonbane). That one is largely written, and will include (for the first time) a complete detailed history of the Targaryen civil war, the Dance of the Dragons. My stories in DANGEROUS WOMEN ("The Princess and the Queen") and ROGUES ("The Rogue Prince") were abridged versions of the same histories.

No publication date has been set yet, but it's likely that we will get the first volume of FIRE AND BLOOD out in late 2018 or early 2019. The second volume, which will carry the history from Aegon III up to Robert's Rebellion, is largely unwritten, so that one will be a few more years in coming.

Finally, GRRM promises us one new short story in 2017. As revealed earlier this year, it's called "Sons of the Dragon" and is a prequel of sorts to "The Princess and the Queen" and "The Rogue Prince." "Sons of the Dragon" chronicles:

the reigns of Aegon the Conquerer's two sons, Aenys I Targaryen and Maegor the Cruel, for those who cannot get enough of my entirely fake histories of Westeros. That one has never been published before in any form, though I did read it at a couple of cons.

Look for "Sons of the Dragon" in The Book of Swords, a new anthology that also features original stories from a dozen other authors, edited by Gardner Dozois. The Book of Swords is scheduled for release on October 10, 2017. You can pre-order it now from


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Tower of the Hand is an unofficial companion to George R. R. Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire series and HBO's Game of Thrones, featuring chapter and episode guides, character profiles, family trees, and much more.

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