Tortoise-paced author George RR Martin has finally released a new chapter from the long-awaited sixth Game of Thrones novel The Winds of Winter, publishing the excerpt on his website.
The acclaimed HBO series has now diverged significantly from the direction set forth by Martin’s famed novels — collectively known as A Song of Ice and Fire — but the new words will likely only appeal to those who read the books for another reason: The new words look through the eyes of a character that viewers of HBO’s series have never seen.
The new chapter comes from the perspective of Arianne Martell, the daughter of Prince Doran Martell — a character who was killed on screen in the first episode of the show’s sixth season, but who is still alive in the novels.
Arianne Martell is on a journey in the new chapter, in the middle of a trip to speak with the leader of a rebel uprising. The plot line will likely never appear on screen, but it still proves interesting to fans of the books, who have been lapping up every word Martin will give them about the new book.
In January, Martin said that it would be many months before the sixth novel was finished. “Yes, there’s a lot written. Hundreds of pages. Dozens of chapters. But there’s also a lot still left to write. I am months away still … and that’s if the writing goes well. (Sometimes it does. Sometimes it doesn’t.)”
The writer also said he had, “Chapters still to write, of course … but also rewriting. I always do a lot of rewriting, sometimes just polishing, sometimes pretty major restructures.”
With the release of the new material, Martin also posted that the new material doesn’t mean the book is almost complete.
“The sample chapter does NOT mean I am done,” he wrote.
Still, new content from the author does mean work continues to be in progress, and many are hopeful that the author will announce a complete book before the year is through.