As usual, it doesn’t take much for people to twist a Game of Thrones-related interview out of proportion these days. Frankly, I’ve seen a lot of outlets repurposing George R.R. Martin’s new interview with The Guardian into clickbaitish, misleading headlines. And that’s disappointing because it’s really a thoughtful and interesting discussion with the author who is frank about his relationship with his work, fandom and the inadvertent effect the show had on his process.
“I need more hours in the day and more days in the week and more months in the year because the time does seem to go very fast,” Martin admits to The Guardian.
There were a couple of years where, if I could have finished the book, I could have stayed ahead of the show for another couple of years, and the stress was enormous…I don’t think it was very good for me, because the very thing that should have speeded me up actually slowed me down. Every day I sat down to write and even if I had a good day – and a good day for me is three or four pages – I’d feel terrible because I’d be thinking: ‘My God, I have to finish the book. I’ve only written four pages when I should have written 40.’ But having the show finish is freeing, because I’m at my own pace now. I have good days and I have bad days and the stress is far less, although it’s still there… I’m sure that when I finish A Dream of Spring you’ll have to tether me to the Earth.
He’s also taken a step back from the internet because of Game of Thrones, and the possibility of fans influencing him. “At first I was very flattered and I’d go on message boards and think: ‘Oh, this is cool, they’re all really excited.’ But then I began to think: ‘No, I should really steer clear. I don’t like the fact that some people have figured things out that are correct, and I don’t like the fact that other people have figured out things that are wrong but that could influence me too.’ So I took myself out of all that and let fans have their theories, some of which are right and some of which are wrong. They’ll find out which when I finish.”
The author however appears to maintain a positive attitude toward fans and the massive emotional reactions generated by his work- and the show based on it. “I’m glad of the emotional reactions, whether to the books or the television show, because that’s what fiction is all about – emotion. If you want to make an intellectual argument or persuade someone, then write an essay or a piece of journalism, write nonfiction. Fiction… should feel as if you’re living these things when you read or watch them. If you’re so distanced by it that a character dies and you don’t care, then to an extent the author has failed.”
Visit The Guardian to read the original complete interview which covers much more and is worth the read!