George R.R. Martin to Deadspin: “I Have Pages” (But What Does That Actually Mean?)

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Back in late December, Tim Marchman at Deadspin wrote a post called “GRRM Has No Pages.” It was highly speculative, and he faced a ton of anger and backlash, but I personally found the argument convincing—as I wrote in a post a few days later discussing Martin’s obvious crisis of faith, and why our Winds of Winter expectations should be set very low. As Marchman noted, any logical study of Martin’s glacial pace of production—he’s published part of one book since 2000—will lead you to believe that the joy has gone out of the act for him, and that procrastination and missed deadlines are the new normal. And how miserable that must be, with your own work hanging over your head!

Today, we have an update—sorta. Marchman reached out to Martin via email and essentially put him on the spot. The question was simple: Do you have any pages? And the response was snippy:

“Of course I have pages. I had pages five years ago. How anyone can believe I don’t defies belief. I’ve posted three different sample chapters on my website over the past few years, and read another four or five chapters at cons.”

In January, as Marchman notes, Martin claimed to have “hundreds of pages” in hand even while saying that the finished product was “months” away. And even after this latest exchange, we really don’t have an honest status update. There’s no page total, no sense of when it will be finished, and no real cause for optimism if you’re somebody like me who believes that he’s never going to finish this thing.

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