Ice and fire are once again at odds in the latest news of Winds of Winter, the long-awaited (and long-delayed) next installment of George R. R. Martin's A Song of Fire and Ice saga.
The news is not good. There's a delay in the process. Again. This time, in a manner of speaking, it's the dragons' fault.
In exchanging comments with fans on a recent Not a Blog post, Martin shared a detail that all but confirms we won't be seeing Winds of Winter in 2018. Not unless there's a miracle.
This latest round of depressing information began when a fan asked what writing Martin had planned for 2018. He responded that he was close to completing the first volume of his spin-off Targaryen family history series, Fire and Blood. Another fan asked how the timeline for that series would factor into the release of Winds of Winter.
"F&B will be in two volumes,” he wrote, referring to Fire and Blood, then further explaining that “Vol 1 before [would come before Winds of Winter], vol 2 after."
In other words, Martin is currently focused on finishing Volume 1 of Fire & Blood in 2018, then going back and Winds of Winter, then continuing on to Volume 2 after that's done.
What's worse, Martin has said that a chunk of the Fire and Blood series will be ... content he's already published in The Book of Swords anthology series or from "sidebars" in The World of Ice & Fire companion book. These include the stories “The Rogue Prince,” “The Princess and the Queen” and “Sons of the Dragon."
But if our best guess is accurate, we only have to wait until 2019 for the 8th and final season of Game of Thrones.
To quote the Targaryen Mad King that Martin is evidently keen to tell us more about, perhaps it's time to just "burn it all."