You Can't Undo What You Know
Winds of Winter by George R.R. Martin.
Well it looks like Winds of Winter isn't going to be out in 2015 with Martin's publisher saying at least 2016 as per the UK paper The Independent . I'm all for a writer writing whatever they want. I don't really care how long it takes as long as it's a great book. I have very few book series I read as soon as they hit the shelves. This is one of them. I regularly check GRRM's This is not a Blog in my fervent wish that a release date is announced there. Plus I know GRRM isn't going to spoil the readers. Of course for the 1000's of times I've checked there and the multiple of other projects GRRM is involved in, it became clear that Book #6 wasn't going to be out anytime soon.
My real fear in this day of the Internet and our increased connectivity is this season the TV show it will certainly have caught up with the books on some of the storylines. Thus in order to avoid spoilers for a book lover foremost, it's going to require a step away from the Internet, the newspapers, any friends that follow the series will have to sign a strict no spoiler legally binding agreement with me. This might seem drastic to you the TV viewer. You probably don't care that the series overtakes the books. After all you haven't read them and don't know how magnificent they are in both scope and fantasy writing. Although I'm positive the TV show lets the view glimpse a lot more nudity than the books ever reveal. It is becoming more evident that the TV show is forging its own path, with events no longer following the book path. After all, it would have meant that a few actors would have had nothing to do for a season.
But for me, the reader I'm saddened. I feel that the time wasn't right to turn the books into a TV series when they were incomplete. You might argue that has happened with other series. And you are right. However I'm so invested in the outcome that it will likely break my heart a little in 2016. Because by then I've invested twenty, well almost, twenty years in this series. I've watched as others have fallen in love with the books. Felt elated happiness when a friend has read them and understands why I rave on about them. The show has made so many new people read the books and that is wonderful. There are people that read the books before the season airs each year. There are people out there that don't care if they know the conclusion before hand. But I do care and I feel a little cheated. Look, that's just how I feel. It's my "issue". Pretty much nine times out of ten if I've watched the show / movie before reading the book, I don't like the book as much. That pulsating, eyes wide, imaginative reading you do whilst reading one of Martin's books will be destroyed. Sure the visuals on TV are amazing. Some of it matches what I visualised in my head, some of it doesn't. I mean Tyrion still looks a lot better than he does by now in the books. I guess TV viewers don't like looking at the grotesque. However sometimes I think that it's nice to be able to imagine this world. To build your own picture of what Martin is creating. After all isn't that part of what a fantasy author is trying to do? Transport the reader to another time and place, a world that is unlike our own. Would we want to live there? Maybe not. Maybe we do, just for some sightseeing.
|Waiting for Winds of Winter|
I even can't bear to torture myself by reading chapters that Martin has put up on this blog. I want to read the whole book when it comes up and putting chapters up always feels a bit like teasing to me. Sure many readers love them and kudos to them, but I don't. I want to be surprised. I want the whole, "Fuck. That. Did. Not. Just. Happen." It's all part of the experience for me. Perhaps I'm a slight hypocrite feeling that way, but I've been down the gorging on spoilers path and been burnt for life. Sure I flirt with spoilers sometimes, but not on the series I really care about. As you may have guess this is one of those series I really care about. Maybe I just need to embrace how to be a spoiler whore? Check out our post on what that entails here. I'm unsure if I'm cut out to do so though. I've always been more of a flirt.
Perhaps you might shout "Well step away from the online world. Just back away." I wish I had that willpower. I confess that I held a certain smugness knowing what was coming up and the delight when my TV viewing friends discovered the genius that no one is safe in this world. I may have cackled in glee when the TV viewers discovered Ned Stark lost his head or when the Red Wedding was the great WTF moment. My own smugness might be my doom. I don't want others to know what is happening in TV land before it happens in the book series. That might be where my heart breaks slightly. I feel a little bit let down. Let down that I know there are at least two more books to go and how long can the TV show continue? Two possibly three season? There is no way the novels will be completed by that time. No way on this earth at least.
Thus I'll needed some moral support in order to learn how to avoid spoilers from Wench Amanda. She's the expert around here for being able to avoid spoilers. I probably should have followed Wench Zee's path and stopped reading the books until they were finished. The trouble is it's a catch 22 situation. I've always enjoyed the series and discussing it. But for now, I'm not watching any more of the show until the the books are completed and I've unfollowed anything I already suspect could spoil me outright. However I know it won't be an easy task.
Are you still watching the show if you are up to date on the books? Do you care if you are spoilt for how the game will ultimately end?