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George R.R. Martin Won’t Change Final Books Over Game of Thrones Backlash

July 15, 2019 | Posted by Jeremy Thomas
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We don’t know how much George R.R. Martin’s final Song of Ice and Fire books will deviate from Game of Thrones yet, but we know that fan reaction won’t have anything to do with it. Martin spoke with EW for a new interview and said that while he’s always been tempted to make changes based on how fans reacted to the past few seasons, he’s committed to seeing the course of the novels.

“There is a temptation to change it — ‘Oh my god, it’s screwed up, I have to come up with something different.’” Martin said. “But that’s wrong. Because you’ve been planning for a certain ending and if you suddenly change direction just because somebody figured it out, or because they don’t like it, then it screws up the whole structure… I don’t read the fan sites. I want to write the book I’ve always intended to write all along. And when it comes out they can like it or they can not like it.”

He also said that he doesn’t feel the same pressure currently to finish the long-delayed Winds of Winter that he did when he was trying to keep pace with the show, noting, “The show was coming out in April and my editors said if I could finish the book by December they’d rush it out. And the pressure I felt that fall was the greatest pressure I’ve ever felt and then at a certain point it became apparent I’m not going to finish it by then. I don’t only want to finish it, I want to make it as good as I possibly can.” But now that Thrones is finished, Martin added, “there’s no longer a race. The show is over. I’m writing the book. It will be done when it’s done.”

Martin has always said that the final two books would be different from the HBO show, if for no other reason than the elements that the series cut in order to streamline it such as Lady Stoneheart, Arianne Martell and the like. Exactly how different they’ll turn out still remains to be seen, however.