'Game of Thrones': George R.R. Martin Reveals How the Books Can Beat the Show

George R.R. Martin - H 2015
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George R.R. Martin - H 2015

In a few weeks, when Game of Thrones returns, the stories of Jon Snow, Daenerys Targaryen, Tyrion Lannister and more will finally move forward, after more than five years on ice.

The HBO fantasy series finally catches up with the pages of George R.R. Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire source material in the upcoming season six, answering major mysteries — like the fate of Lord Commander Snow, for instance — before they're resolved in the books. 

It wasn't intended this way, but Martin announced in January that he would not be able to complete his sixth book in the series, The Winds of Winter, in time for publication before season six — leading fans to draw the inevitable conclusion that the show will reach the end of Martin's saga before the author himself.

Some fans still believe Martin can release both Winds and the subsequent final book, A Dream of Spring, before Thrones finishes its run, and this week, the writer addressed the possibility. Winter Is Coming points to the comments section of a blog post written by Martin on Wednesday, where a fan asked if there's "a chance that A Dream of Spring will beat the last season of the show."

"If the show runs 10 seasons," Martin replied, "maybe."

In the past, Martin has hinted that Game of Thrones could reach 10 seasons, but showrunners David Benioff and D.B. Weiss have expressed their desire to end the show after seven. Last summer, HBO programming president Michael Lombardo suggested that the show will live past seven seasons

"The question is how much beyond seven are we going to do," he said, adding that Benioff and Weiss were "feeling like there's two more years after six. I would always love for them to change their minds. That's what we're looking at right now."

When it comes to the longevity of Game of Thrones, then, it sounds like there is some middle ground, despite what Cersei Lannister might have you believe. But even if the show reaches 10 seasons, Martin's only willing to offer "maybe" as to whether he can complete the books in time.

For his part, Martin says he's focused on finishing Winds, sharing the same sentiment as so many fans: "I wish the book was done."

Keep up with all the Game of Thrones overage at THR.com/GameOfThrones.