February 2, 2015

Printed Seasons & New Territory For All

Judging from the preview for Game of Thrones: Season 5, it looks this will be the final season of the show that is based on books that are already published. Which, basically means that the show 'will pass the books'.

The book series, called A Song of Ice and Fire, began in 1996 with A Game of Thrones. A Clash of Kings followed in 199, then A Storm of Swords in 2000, followed by A Feast For Crows in 2005, and most recently with A Dance With Dragons in 2011.

The books are quire large. 3 and 5 are the largest to date, with signs of the final two (at this moment, The Winds of Winter and A Dream of Spring) being as large. They are so large, inf act that some of the bigger ones are about equal to two or three of another author's book. Plus, they are detailed. Lots going on.

Anyway, the author is currently working on The Winds of Winter. He is, thanks mostly to the show, a celebrity author. So he's busy with that kind of thing. He's a person, too, that likes conventions etc. Last year, he stated that he is basically clearing up his slate to allow him to work on The Winds of Winter [Book Six] as much as possible. You may see some new items with his name on it in the book stores. This is some of other stuff becoming a book, which he finished ages ago. Also, there's the fact that his publisher(s) will re-issue or re-print something, with no input by him. I don't mean 'without him knowing' but rather, you think every time the Harry Potter books get a new cover, J.K. Rowling writes new words to go in them? So don't get too upset if you see something by George R.R. Martin that is not The Winds of Winter. I would love it to be that book as much as you....I'm just more polite about it.

Currently, The Winds of Winter is not on the publisher's agenda to be published this year. Key word: currently. Also - we are January. A Dance With Dragons was published in July of 2011. It was announced, official word etc, in March. Basically, for The Winds of Winter to be published this year, George would need to finish it utterly on his end, announce it, etc...no later than September for it to come out 'this year'. A 2016 release date seems the most likely. This year would be awesome. Would be hopeful. Would be a surprise. Next year seems to be the most likely year. And 2017 seems to be pushing it a bit much.

 Sure, The Winds of Winter may in fact come out before Season 6 starts...but what about the final season and the final book?  That is a lot less likely.

The show, however, does not appear to be stopping anytime soon - except to end. Throughout the series, there has been a few 'butterfly effects'. Season 3 was when the show began to get more noticeably different than the books. There were a few moments in four that were completely different. So, there's a reason for that - the show will 'pass' the books at this point in the story.

But what happens next year, if Winds is not out by the time new season starts? What will the book readers do who that watch the show? Well, one of two things: a) watch the show and go in 'blind' like the non-readers or b) stop watching the show.

"But what about the spoilers?"

With facebook and all that these days, spoilers are harder to avoid. So here's my advice:

- stop visiting any Game of Thrones / A Song of Ice and Fire web site. PERIOD.
- unfollow any Thrones / Ice and Fire on facebook. It seems like that, according to facebook, unless you watch a movie the day it comes out, or watch an episode as soon as it's new, you risk being spoiled. I have a facebook that I managed, "Thronies", I keep an eye on the posts, make sure nothing gets spoiled. Whenever a season will pass a book, I'll make it so every post needs to approved by an admin (me). 

- try and unfollow (NOT unfriend) any 'jerk' friend, (or people, that you have on social media that also watch the show) who may post spoilers about the show in the areas of March - July. That is the most 'extreme' in which a season can run for, lengthwise. They are 10 episodes each, but it all depends on when that first one airs.

So that being said, to those who want to read it happen before seeing it, best of luck to you. And George, should you be reading this, this was my attempt to 'warn' the masses. I hope that 2015 is going well for you, and the writing too. The books are great, and I'm looking forward to them, as well as the Dunk & Egg novellas.

As for me: I think I'll keep watching. This year though, I may try and wait until the season finishes before starting it. I'll try.
The show is going in different directions, and I will still read the books no matter when they are released. As for the show? I hope the final season is split into two 'parts' (Mad Men, Breaking Bad, Hell on Wheels, Sopranos even...) each 'part' with 7 episodes each to give us a great ending. 

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