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George R.R. Martin says he's 75% done with ‘Winds of Winter,’ which is going to 'be a very big book'

He also estimates that the sixth volume in his A Song of Ice and Fire series will be over 1,500 pages long. 

By Vanessa Armstrong
George R.R. Martin

George R.R. Martin, the author who created the Game of Thrones universe, is still working on the sixth book in his A Song of Ice and Fire series, the books that HBO’s Game of Thrones was based on. It’s been over a decade since the fifth book — A Dance With Dragons — came out, but that hasn’t lessened fans’ fervor to read the next installment in the series.

Martin gave an update of where he was on the sixth book, The Winds of Winter, when he was a guest on The Late Show With Stephen Colbert last night.

Check out the conversation below:

RELATED: George R.R. Martin teases next 'A Song of Ice and Fire' novel won’t mimic 'Game of Thrones' TV show

"I am making progress with The Winds of Winter, but it's still not done yet,” Martin told Colbert when the host asked for a status update. “I think it's going to be a very big book.” 

How big, you ask? According to Martin, The Winds of Winter will be bigger than the biggest books in A Song of Ice and Fire to date. The longest books thus far — the third volume, Storm and Swords, and the fifth volume, A Dance With Dragons — run about 1,500 pages each. So yeah, big.

Martin went on to estimate that he’s about three-quarters of the way done with The Winds of Winter, with some of the storylines completed. “I’m done with some of the characters,” he said. “They all interweave, so I’m done with a couple of the characters — I got their whole story — but not others … it’s still going to take me awhile.”

Colbert did some quick math while talking to the author and said that if Martin continues at his current pace, it will be three more years before The Winds of Winter comes out. Martin conceded that those numbers were depressing, and we’re sure many fans would agree. On the bright side, Martin did say that he wrote “hundreds of pages” in 2020 while in pandemic lockdown, so maybe he’ll keep up that pace and finish sooner than Colbert calculated. 

While the HBO show went beyond the first five volumes in his A Song of Ice and Fire books, Martin has also said that much of what happens in The Winds of Winter will be “quite different” from what we saw in the last two seasons of the television series. Sadly, it sounds like we’ll have to wait for a least a couple more years to see how exactly the stories differ. 

In the meantime, if you’re up for some fantasy content to tide you over — click here for our list of the fantasy films currently available on Peacock.