'Game of Thrones' Creator George R.R. Martin Gives Update on 'Winds of Winter'

Game of Thrones author George R.R. Martin provided a little update on The Winds of Winter, the next chapter of the A Song Of Ice And Fire epic while on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert Wednesday night, although it was not news his fans would want to hear.

Martin was on The Late Show to talk about his new book, Fire and Blood, which chronicles the history of Westeros, the world of Game of Thrones. Colbert pointed out that instead of writing this supplemental book, he could have been spending his time on The Winds of Winter.

"This is 700 pages long," Colbert said of the brand new book. "Aren't you supposed to be finishing The Winds of Winter this entire time? Not to add to the chorus of 'what has taken so long,' but this is a 700-page detour!"

Martin said after he finishes The Winds of Winter, he will write a follow-up to Fire and Blood. Then, he will get to work on A Dream of Spring, the final novel in A Song Of Ice And Fire.

"There's a lot of stuff to write," Martin told Colbert. "I should actually get home and get to work."

In a previous interview Entertainment Weekly last week, Martin said he understood fan's frustrations with his slow writing pace, especially considering he found time to write Fire and Blood.

"I know there are a lot of people out there who are very angry with me that Winds of Winter isn't finished," Martin explained to the magazine. "And I'm mad about that myself. I wished I finished it four years ago. I wished it was finished now. But it's not. And I've had dark nights of the soul where I've pounded my head against the keyboard and said, 'God, will I ever finish this? The show is going further and further forward and I'm falling further and further behind. What the hell is happening here? I've got to do this.'"

The latest chapter in the A Song of Ice and Fire series, A Dance With Dragons, was published back in 2011, and HBO's Game of Thrones has long since passed that. Executive producers David Benioff and D.B. Weiss have been forced to write their own story, with input from Martin, to keep the show going. The series will conclude next year, and HBO is already developing a prequel series.

During his interview with Colbert, Martin also explained how turtles played a major part in starting his literary career. He said he grew up in a federal housing project in Bayou, New Jersey where the only pets his family could have were turtles and he stored them in a toy castle.

"I could fit two turtle bowls in the castle," Martin explained. "But the thing is about those little dime store turtles is they die very soon. I fed them the turtle food, I thought I was doing everything right. I couldn't figure out why they would die. It certainly wasn't my fault. I decided they were competing for the turtle throne. They were competing for who would be the turtle king. That was my first fantasy: Turtle Castle. It preceded Game of Thrones by many years."


Game of Thrones will return on HBO in April 2019.

Photo credit: Scott Kowalchyk/CBS