The drama started over the weekend, when actor Ian McElhinney (who played Barristan Selmy) was quoted as telling attendees at a fan event that George had finally finished writing the books.
“He struck an agreement with David [Benioff] and Dan [Weiss], the showrunners of the series, that he would not publish the final two books until the series has been completed,” he allegedly said. “So all goes well, in another month or two, we might get books six and seven.”
Sadly, this is definitely not the case.
Writing on his blog, George labelled the claims he’s finished The Winds Of Winter and A Dream Of Spring as “crazy”, rubbing salt in the wound by adding: “DREAM is not even begun; I am not going to start writing volume seven until I finish volume six.” [sic]
“It seems absurd to me that I need to state this,” he continued. “The world is round, the Earth revolves around the sun, water is wet… do I need to say that too?
“It boggles me that anyone would believe this story, even for an instant. It makes not a whit of sense.”
Clearly not done, George continued: “Why would I sit for years on completed novels? Why would my publishers — not just here in the US, but all around the world — ever consent to this?
“They make millions and millions of dollars every time a new Ice & Fire book comes out, as do I. Delaying makes no sense.
“Why would HBO want the books delayed? The books help create interest in the show, just as the show creates interest in the books.”
The TV version of Game Of Thrones overtook George’s books quite some time ago, despite the writer being five books ahead of the show when the first season aired.
George has made no secret of his disappointment at the timeline, which left him no choice but to tell the showrunners plot secrets in order for them to finish the programme without any source material.
“I was completely confident that I would have the entire series finished,” he previously said in an interview with US TV channel CBS. “Winds of Winter and A Dream of Spring would be out before they got to them.
“I know there are a lot of people out there who are very angry with me that Winds of Winter isn’t finished. And I’m mad about that myself.”