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George RR Martin on The Winds of Winter – Only 500 Pages Left

By now, fans of George RR Martin’s Song of Ice and Fire books, the novels adapted into the HBO Max series game of Thrones Y dragon house – are used to slightly grueling updates on their progress on the next novel in the 11-year-late series, winter winds. An episode of the Comedy Central series Tooning Out The News by Stephen Colbert has the latest from Martin, who says, sounding pretty candid about it, that he’s written about 1,100 to 1,200 pages of the book so far, and only has “another 400, 500 pages” left.

In this exclusive clip from the episode of Martin’s show, scheduled to air after the daily program On December 7 at 11:30 p.m. EST, animated host Dr. Ike Bloom (voiced by Inspector Ike‘s Ikechukwu Ufomadu) chides Martin, calling him “a struggling writer – let me review that, truly pathetic — who has trouble meeting deadlines.” He calls hyper-prolific crime writer James Patterson for advice on how Martin can get his job done faster.

Patterson first asks how far past Martin’s deadline, and seems puzzled to hear how long the book has been delayed. He suggests that Martin has “writer’s constipation” and advises him to change his writing methods, in terms of continuing to use a DOS computer and WordStar word processor: “Try something else, then, because that’s not working.”

Martin has frequently expressed that he is exasperated with fans and interviewers constantly pestering him about his slow progress on winter winds, who continues to be sidelined as he works on other HBO shows and projects. But here, he at least seems to try to force a sense of humor on the whole thing, with some awkward laughs thrown in at the roast. What it doesn’t address is why, as Patterson gleefully suggests, it doesn’t separate winter winds into releasable sections, since a 1,700-page book isn’t really a physical possibility. “Problem solved!” Patterson says. “Split the 1,100 pages into three books… You send out one book a year, they’ll be happy, and suddenly you’re ahead of the game.” Martin just laughs.

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Tooning Out The News by Stephen Colbert it is currently in its third season. Full episodes of the series are available on Paramount Plus, Hulu, and on the Comedy Central website.

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