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George R.R. Martin’s next TV universe just began development

Winter is finally here and there’s only two (half)-seasons left of HBO’s Game of Thrones … so what’s a super fan to do?

George R.R. Martin, the creator of the original series, A Song of Ice and Fire, has more television material up his sleeves, and it’s a story that’s been in the works since 1987. The author posted on his blog Saturday afternoon, announcing that Universal Cable Productions has “acquired the rights to adapt our long-running Wild Cards series of anthologies and mosaic novels for television.” Development will begin immediately, Martin said, and he hopes it will be the first of several interlocking series.

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For those not as well-versed on Martin’s non-Game of Thrones works, Wild Cards is an expansive universe of interweaving stories, developed by 30 writers called the Wild Cards Trust, all edited by Martin and his close friend, Melinda M. Snodgrass. The next installment comes out later this month and three more are set future release, making for a total of 26 separate stories.

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Snodgrass, who has worked on Star Trek: The Next Generation, Reasonable Doubts, The Profiler, and Star Command, will serve as the executive producer for the series, along with Gregory Noveck of RED (2010). And for those hoping Martin himself would help out on the show in a similar way that he did with Game of Thrones, prepare for disappointment — his agreement with HBO prevents him from doing so.

According to The Verge, the series is “set in an alternate history which began following the outbreak of an alien virus that mutates those it infects. Survivors can be crippled or gain superhuman powers.”

While there’s currently no production timeline, expect to hear more soon as Game of Thrones nears its end date.