Why You're Wrong if You're Mad at George R. R. Martin

AngronIsAngry

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Living in europe, I have come to peace with spoilers. It's either that or never touch the internet.
It's a rare occassion to go into a story (movie/book/game,...) with out some pre-knowledge anyways. I'm just happy nobody was talking about "SAW" back in the day.
 

Redd the Sock

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To say I'm mad at him for being behind on the books would imply I particularly like the books. However long the new book takes to come out, I'll wait the extra year for the paperback.

However this kind of bullshit from creative types does piss me off. In many ways, I get his issues. Thanks to an adaption on TV his book series that he started 15 years prior suddenly became popular, and popular enough to be demanded by more than the Sci-fi/fantasy book club. He got caught in something he was unprepared for and neve got into the mindset that he might have to. This isn't like most manga to anime adaptations where one naturally seems to progress faster than the other, having the adaptation started well before there was enough material to make many episodes, or needing time bought due to sudden delays. This was someone that still feels he's allowed to go at his own pace even when a LOT of people are counting on him to do his part, and didn't even seem to punch it up 2 years ago when this outcome was starting to look like a probability and the jokes started coming out about how slow he was.

Even then, I'm not mad at him for that. Yeah, I'm pissed that I work payroll and I have to meet deadlines (having come in to do payroll with some rather serious flus over the years) while people like that can say "when I get around to it" with impunity, but not all jobs are important and time sensitive like mine. However, when deadlines are missed, show some fucking respect to your fans to own it. Say sorry. Give your reasons if applicable and not lame. Vow to do better in the future even if lying. You don't try to try and hide your own inability to meet a deadline by hiding behind adaptations never being exact. The show already went that path when characters were adults instead of teenagers and has had several additions and omissions already, so I don't see it as valid cover.

Martin can take all the time he wants with the books, but don't treat your readership / viewership with such disrespect that they should just wait on you to get your act together. You're already lucky enough to be in a position where this is possible (unlike say, if the writers of the show suddenly couldn't get an episode out for 2 months mid-season), don't be a primadona about it by avoiding the reality that you're letting people down, or acting like people that expect things from you are unreasonable.
 

IOwnTheSpire

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Redd the Sock said:
However, when deadlines are missed, show some fucking respect to your fans to own it. Say sorry. Give your reasons if applicable and not lame. Vow to do better in the future even if lying. You don't try to try and hide your own inability to meet a deadline by hiding behind adaptations never being exact. The show already went that path when characters were adults instead of teenagers and has had several additions and omissions already, so I don't see it as valid cover.

Martin can take all the time he wants with the books, but don't treat your readership / viewership with such disrespect that they should just wait on you to get your act together. You're already lucky enough to be in a position where this is possible (unlike say, if the writers of the show suddenly couldn't get an episode out for 2 months mid-season), don't be a primadona about it by avoiding the reality that you're letting people down, or acting like people that expect things from you are unreasonable.
He's already apologized and explained his reasons for being behind (distractions, mainly show-related stuff).

Also, he was never really working on a deadline. He doesn't have deadlines. He had HOPED to finish by the end of the year, but that's not a deadline.
 

John Markley

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I'm just wondering how the show's producer's are going to deal with the seventh book. There was at least the hope that book six would come out in time for season six- that's obviously completely out of the question for the last book. And putting such a hot show on hiatus for half a decade is obviously out of the question, too.

Might be sort of interesting, actually. If the TV show's last season has to be made based on early outlines of Martin's plans for the seventh book- which are not neccesarily set in stone, after all- we could end up with some really drastic differences between the show and the books, with the end of the show providing a sort of snapshot of one point in the evolution of the ending we end up getting in the novels.
 

GundamSentinel

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Aug 23, 2009
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I'm not mad that he hasn't finished the book yet. I'm not mad that the TV series will overtake the story of the book (even though they are separate (in a way) stories).

No, I'm mad because I really doubt that when the new book is released it will be any good. That is because I really doubt that George has any idea where he's taking the story and how it will end. Every new book the story gets more convoluted with characters that add nothing and arcs that go absolutely nowhere. It's about time to wrap up some of them, but George seems very disinclined to do that. I know it's all speculation on my part, but honestly, after the last couple of books, who still has the idea that the story is actually going somewhere?
 

Yojoo

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Sep 9, 2010
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I'm not pissed at GRRM because he didn't finish book six by season six. I'm pissed at him because WE NEVER SHOULD HAVE GOTTEN TO THIS POINT.

Look, I'm no author, but how the hell can somebody so consistently misinterpret the workload ahead of him by a span of YEARS? A Feast of Crows came out in 2005, with the promise of its companion novel Dance with Dragons being released THE NEXT YEAR. It took until 2011 for Dance to arrive. Now, here we are on year 5 of waiting for the sixth book, and who knows when we'll get a seventh or even if seven books is enough to finish the story.

I mean, J.K. Rowling let the movie adaptations of her books begin when she was only halfway finished with the Harry Potter series, but despite slowing down her pace towards the end, she still published the Deathly Hallows four years before the films caught up with her.
 

Buckets

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May 1, 2014
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I loved the books, and the TV show's story is not entirely identical but is pretty much the same. I would have preferred to have have read the book before the new series of the show, but if that's released in April then I guess it's going to be the other way round. In fact I probably won't bother with the book, not as much time for reading nowadays anyway.
It will be nearly impossible to ignore the show until the book is finished, it will be spoiled somewhere in about 30 seconds after it has aired, unless you live on the moon.
 

P-89 Scorpion

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Sep 25, 2014
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IOwnTheSpire said:
He's already apologized and explained his reasons for being behind (distractions, mainly show-related stuff).

Also, he was never really working on a deadline. He doesn't have deadlines. He had HOPED to finish by the end of the year, but that's not a deadline.

He had deadlines that's why the first 3 books where all published in just over 4 years but because his original contract was just for 3 books when it came to continuing the very successful story the publisher had to negotiate from a weaker position.

All writers are pushed to keep deadlines under there contracts then when they have a big hit they get to dictate terms as with success they have power.
 

tacotrainwreck

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Sep 15, 2011
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The last time George RR Martin ran over my dog, he thumbed his nose at me. The first time, he simply farted. Please don't say I'm wrong if I'm mad at him.
 

Redlin5_v1legacy

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Aug 5, 2009
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I always knew that television and serial novel production were incompatible with their timetables unless the latter was completed before the former even began.

I'm not enamored by the show in the same way I enjoy the books anyway. Guess I'm going to be avoiding Game of Thrones some more although it was usually just the fact I don't have a source to watch HBO anyway than anything else.
 

BloodRed Pixel

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I love GoT (any media) as the next best fan but heck

FUCK those whiny fans for their 1st world problems!!!!

They think great creative work grows on trees over night, they have no clue that it is the hardest to come up with good writing.

And the insight holds true forever: a delayed release is bad for now - a bad release is bad forever!

Anyway... - did I alreay say FUCK YOU, you stupid audience?
 

Luminous_Umbra

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Sep 25, 2011
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Perhaps you shouldn't use Full Metal Alchemist as a comparison if you're trying to not make this seem like a bad thing, seeing how poor the divergent version was. Just saying.
 

Recusant

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Nov 4, 2014
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Being 'mad' at Martin for not finishing the sixth book by the start of season six is just excessive. Recall, if you would, the foreword to A Dance With Dragons, where he explains that it's actually the second half of book four, which had gotten so long that even he had to split it.

We're not waiting for book six, we're waiting for book five.
 

DementedSheep

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While I don't agree with the idea that writing or any commercial art is some special thing that takes as long as it takes and can't be "forced" (you need discipline with it like any other job) I don't see the point in getting pissy at him. It sucks for people invested in the story but you didn't pay for the other books in advance and this a common problem.
 

Politrukk

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The show has gone to hell and his books are taking too long, my well developed interest in the series has already dropped.

I will watch but more out of habit than of actual interest.
 

Yojoo

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Sep 9, 2010
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BloodRed Pixel said:
I love GoT (any media) as the next best fan but heck

FUCK those whiny fans for their 1st world problems!!!!

They think great creative work grows on trees over night, they have no clue that it is the hardest to come up with good writing.

And the insight holds true forever: a delayed release is bad for now - a bad release is bad forever!

Anyway... - did I alreay say FUCK YOU, you stupid audience?
I'm losing faith that we're ever going to see a release, bad or otherwise. Books four and five were sprawling and meandering compared to books 1-3, and the extreme amount of time it's taken GRRM to figure out where to take the story since is uniquely worrisome.

As I said previously, he originally promised Dance to come out a year after Feast, instead of SIX years. Since Dance was comprised heavily of things cut from Feast, that implies that, in 2005-2006, GRRM was looking at enough material to realistically assume he'd finish Dance quickly. He was off by several years, and I've never quite experienced an author going through something like that without overtly taking time off or working on other projects in between.

So, where does this leave us? GRRM has gone from writing a trilogy to aiming for seven novels, possibly more. His estimates for release dates are so wrong that they might as well not exist. The TV series beginning in 2011 implies to an extent that the series books would outpace the seasons of the show, yet that's proven wildly inaccurate. Now, he doesn't even dare to speculate as to when Winds will be complete; we just get occasional updates of when it WON'T be ready by.

I loved the books, and I bought into the hype early of how great they were as an enduring work of literature. I've parroted the sentiment that GRRM is the American Tolkein. But the gut-wrenching suspicion I now hold is that A Song of Ice and Fire will go down in history for an entirely different reason: as possibly the most high-profile example of storytelling ambition stretching beyond capability of actually putting the story to words.
 

Yojoo

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Politrukk said:
The show has gone to hell and his books are taking too long, my well developed interest in the series has already dropped.

I will watch but more out of habit than of actual interest.
The show has gone to hell? Surely you're aware that viewership and reviews continue to be record-breaking for GoT, despite some controversy. What's your grievance with the show?
 

Politrukk

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Yojoo said:
Politrukk said:
The show has gone to hell and his books are taking too long, my well developed interest in the series has already dropped.

I will watch but more out of habit than of actual interest.
The show has gone to hell? Surely you're aware that viewership and reviews continue to be record-breaking for GoT, despite some controversy. What's your grievance with the show?
They've pulled out a lot of legs from the story and the final 2 episodes for the last season whilst gaining high viewership have had a very negative backlash amongst the fans.

The book fans anger aside there are a lot of people who are dissapointed with the death of Stannis and his family as well as that supposedly of Jon Snow.

Daenerys Targaryen and Sansa Stark though interesting from a book point of view to an extent are absolutely dull in the series, Daenerys has gained quite some popularity with women but a lot of men are dropping out due to the shows increased focus on her.

The return of Bran Stark or a focus on the Tarly home is not going to help the ratings either.


Edit:
whilst average viewership still was comparable with a 0.03(million) growth between season 4 and 5 the overall viewership has actually dropped, if it weren't for the series opener and finale the viewership would actually show a decline
 

Razhem

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Fractral said:
That said, I'm not angry at GRRM for being a slow writer. Being a fan of large fantasy series means you have to be a little patient (Looking at you, Brandon Sanderson). At least he's actively writing the next book, unlike Patrick Bloody Rothfuss who took a long break to write a dull, badly written story from the point of view of a minor character in his series and then made condescending remarks towards the people who didn't like it.
Putting Brian Sanderson in the same phrase as GRRM is quite the insult as far as I'm concerned. Sanderson is a true writer who works on 5 projects at the same time and actually is capable of complying with his own estimates with decent accuracy while also offering quite high quality writting for the genre. I've only read the first Mistborn trilogy, the first book of the second and both books from the Stormlight Archive as well as Warbringer and it's been mostly a high quality product. The guy even keeps decently updated information of at what point he is in each of the multiple books he is working on at the same time. Here are his words for the end of the year as well as a rundown of what he?s achieved during it http://brandonsanderson.com/state-of-the-sanderson-2015/ Dwarfs Martins little excuse fest, doesn't it?

Martin on the other hand has a single project and it?s been festering for years at a snails pace, books 4 and 5 were mostly rubbish and I think no Game of Thrones fan can deny that at the very least they are of lesser quality compared to the first 3 and seeing how overbloated it all seems to still be getting, I expect the 6th book to be a gigantic unfocused phone book sized brick. He clearly knows not how to temper his ideas and that is forcing everything completely out of whack. He is another bloody artsy type whose head gets full of hot air the moment he doesn't have restrictions, the first 3 books were very good, and no small part of it has to do with having real deadlines which forced to cut content that at the end allowed the story to be more streamlined and least meandering, thing that did not apply to book 4 and 5 and reason why it keeps adding more and more crap on top of it.

I already know to expect nothing from Martin, but I never thought he was that amazing ever, the series hasn't really enthralled me either, but I can certainly understand why the fans would be pissed. What does piss me off is how overvalued he is compared to his writing peers and how pampered and protected he is at this stage of the game where he should either get his ass into gear, or admit he has no fucking idea what he is doing and outsource the work to somebody that actually can stay focused for more than an hour and supervise him.

Also, Daenerys started as a great character, but at least in the books behaved at the end like a hormoned mess who just couldn't stop screwing stuff up (the novels feeling the need to keep her stranded on the other side of the sea to develop more worthless crap certainly did not help Daenerys growth as a character and monarch). Give me Vin any day as a female main character worth following.