This is kind of a personal point of irritation for some individuals since the whole idea that Martin had a five-book lead on HBO’s production of Game of Thrones makes it hard to think that he couldn’t finish off the series in the years it took for the show to catch up to the books. Some are bound to gladly make excuses for the author such as he had too much on his plate, he stretched himself too thin, and blah, blah, blah. But anyone who’s ever written a novel, and yes, one that qualifies as a super-novel, can attest that writing a book is a process and that it might take a while. But the man had several YEARS to write these books, 2 books, and somehow he didn’t keep pace with the series when he had a huge headstart. There’s no doubt that this is his biggest regret since while being made rich by the publication of his books and the show, Martin should have had plenty of time in the years between the show’s conception, development, and release to finish TWO BOOKS. Do I seem frustrated? Maybe just a little.

It’s easy to let go of this frustration when realizing what it actually takes to write a book, without help, and with enough detail that the reader can actually see what’s going on. But considering that another excuse given is that Martin believes that his books could have lasted a good 11 to 13 seasons, and GoT only went to 8, which made it harder for him to finish. It’s true that the process of writing, editing, publishing, and then creating a screenplay can be a lengthy process, but it’s a very hard excuse to accept if one has ever written a book and discovered that the writing portion depends heavily on the dedication of the writer. Martin is talented, but if writer’s block was ever used as an excuse it’s a load of hogwash because yes, writer’s block is real, but there are numerous ways around it without having to write crap to simply push through it.

Writing a book can be draining in a very different way as well, but getting away from the story and coming back to it tends to alleviate this, as do numerous things that could have helped Martin over the years. Fans aren’t the only ones frustrated by this since asking any author, published or not if it’s difficult to write a book will come back with many answers. But the core answer is that to write a book one must park their butt in their chair and simply write. If there’s one cardinal sin of writing that Martin has committed it is this, that he didn’t sit down, take the time, and simply finish his books. He had the materials, he had the idea, and he had the opportunities to write. One might want to excuse this because he had to help promote the books and the show, but from 2011 to 2018 there’s no way it can be said that he didn’t have the necessary time to make this happen. Yes, that is very clear frustration you’re reading and no, it won’t make a bit of difference since it will probably be another couple of years until Martin’s done with GoT series.

The frustration comes from a story that lies untold and unrealized, and it’s a personal matter that some authors might easily understand. But when speaking of Martin it’s something that grows milder by the moment since there’s no way to make him go faster or prompt him to finish when anyone else wants him to. The fact that he had so much time to finish up and did not is simply mind-boggling since counting him as one of the greatest authors around is simple for many but has become a little more difficult for some of us since, despite all that he has done, the simple act of not finishing a story while growing rich and famous feels somehow false. There’s no doubt he’s a great writer, and many would argue that he’s dedicated, but the lack of completion with GoT makes one wonder if he really is or not, or if the fame and need to promote his work made him a bit forgetful.

Nothing’s going to take away what he’s already done and trying to deny that he is a great author is pointless at this time, but there’s still going to be that question as to how focused he really is on the project and how dedicated he is to the story. Bringing any author into question like this is a serious matter, but until he’s done, that question mark will remain. The sad part is that once the story is over the question mark will still be there as a reminder.