Updated: 19th April 2018

George RR Martin misses last TV deadline for new Game of Thrones book

Author says he feels depressed and has failed his fans, as now HBO TV series will be shown before its source material, The Winds of Winter, is released

The author of the Game of Thrones series, George RR Martin, has confirmed he has missed the last deadline that would have allowed the sixth novel in his fantasy series to be published before the next TV series begins.

The failure to meet the 31 December deadline will mean the sixth season of HBOs Game of Thrones series will appear on screens before the source material its taken from for the first time.

Martin has been working closely with HBO writers and producers to help the series mirror the books. But the next season is due to start in Spring and Martins sixth book, the Winds of Winter, will not be ready.

Announcing on his blog an update on the progress of his book early on Saturday, Martin prefacing the announcement with the words you wont like it wrote: For months now I have wanted nothing so much as to be able to say, I have completed and delivered The Winds of Winter on or before the last day of 2015. But the books not done.

Nor is it likely to be finished tomorrow, or next week. Yes, theres a lot written. Hundreds of pages. Dozens of chapters. But theres also a lot still left to write. I am months away still and thats if the writing goes well. (Sometimes it does. Sometimes it doesnt.)

Chapters still to write, of course but also rewriting. I always do a lot of rewriting, sometimes just polishing, sometimes pretty major restructures.

Martin said he and his editors got together with HBO producers last spring after the fifth season of Game of Thrones on TV to discuss how The Winds of Winter could be out before the next season. He said that for the book to be out in March 2016 he would have to deliver the manuscript in October, which seemed very doable to me. In May.

Martin said a busy year meant he would be unable to meet the deadline, which deeply depressed him. Explaining the reaction of his editors, the author said: [I] thought theyd be sick about it but I have to say, my editors and publishers are great, and they took it with surprising equanimity.

A new deadline of New Years Eve was agreed and has since been missed, forcing Martin to admit: Here it is, the first of January. The book is not done, not delivered. No words can change that. I tried, I promise you. I failed.

I blew the Halloween deadline, and Ive now blown the end of the year deadline. And that almost certainly means that no, The Winds of Winter will not be published before the sixth season of Game of Thrones premieres in April.

Apologising to fans of the books, for whom he accepted some aspects of the TV show would spoil events in the new novel, he said: I wont make excuses. There are no excuses. No one else is to blame. Not my editors and publishers, not HBO. Its on me. I tried, and I am still trying.

Read more: http://www.theguardian.com/us