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Song of Ice and Waiting

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I'm a patient person. I will always gladly wait for a quality product. Diablo III going to take an extra year? No problem. It's going to be worth the wait.

I love my books. As an avid reader, I'm accustomed to waiting for the latest installment of a favorite series. You can't rush creativity.

For a perfect example, look at The Dark Tower series. Stephen King wrote The Gunslinger when he was 19 years old. Fifteen years later, the FOURTH book, Wizard and Glass was published. Then there was that little jogging incident, and King decided to finish the saga before he died for real. He knocked out the last three books in a comparatively short amount of time, and the quality seen previously just wasn't there. I'm glad I got to see out heroes reach the end of their journey, but I didn't really enjoy it much after a point.

Recently, I started reading George R. R. Martin's Song of Ice and Fire series. I absolutely LOVED the first two books. I read the first three books, and all was good. I LOVED them. Political intrigue, deception, betrayal, all kinds of good stuff. The fourth book, however... I really did not enjoy the third book. It focused on characters that I really didn't care about, plot lines that really didn't lead ANYWHERE. I finished it off, wondering what the heck happened, where did all my favorite characters go? I was having flashbacks to Perrin disappearing from The Wheel of Time for several books.

Then, I got to the end. To quote Martin himself, "Tyrion, Jon, Dany... and all the rest of the characters you love or love to hate will be along next year. (I devoutly hope)" Basically, he wrote the whole story, realized it was too bloody long and decided to split it in half.

You know what? No problem. I can accept that.

This brings me to a post on Neil Gaiman's blog that I happened across a while back. At the time, I totally agreed with it. Martin will get the fifth book out when it's ready.

After finishing A Feast for Crows, my outlook changed dramatically. Back in May, when I read Gaiman's post, I had no idea the status of Martin's next book. After catching up, I did. The fifth book is basically already written. There is no conceivable reason it should be taking 4 1/2 years to get it out. Yeah, that's right. That quote about getting the next book out in a year was written in June 2004.

If Martin had merely said "The book was too long, I decided to split it up," I would have been happy. Christopher Paolini did that recently with his Inheritance books, and I was okay with it. But, no, Martin had to go and tell everyone that the next book would be done in a year, that the story was already written. Then, over four years later, here we are with nothing.

2 comments:
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Awlbiste said...
October 6, 2009 at 4:27 PM  

Good thing I've only just started on the second one.

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Syrana said...
October 6, 2009 at 7:38 PM  

I've heard a lot about the Ice and Fire series but have yet to start it... now I'm not sure if I want to wait to see if the next book comes out first ...

Also, I sincerely promise to do my best to never miss a Tuesday RP post again >.>

:P

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