The End of Game Of Thrones on TV Is 'Freeing', Says George R.R. Martin
George RR Martin is really quite glad that the TV series of Game of Thrones is over at last, if he's being completely honest.
The stress of trying to keep pace with the TV series up to the end of the fifth season dried up his creative juices and slowed down his progress on both the main A Song of Ice and Fire series and the many, many side-projects he's spun off it.
"There were a couple of years where, if I could have finished the book, I could have stayed ahead of the show for another couple of years, and the stress was enormous," he told the Guardian. "I don’t think it was very good for me, because the very thing that should have speeded me up actually slowed me down.
"Every day I sat down to write and even if I had a good day - and a good day for me is three or four pages - I'd feel terrible because I'd be thinking: 'My God, I have to finish the book. I've only written four pages when I should have written 40.' But having the show finish is freeing, because I'm at my own pace now. I have good days and I have bad days and the stress is far less, although it's still there."
Oh, and while we've got you George - anything to say about the extremely divisive ending to season eight of Game of Thrones? "We shouldn't talk about that," Martin said. Righto. But! He's generally happy there was a big outpouring of feeling.
"I’m glad of the emotional reactions, whether to the books or the television show, because that's what fiction is all about - emotion," he said. "If you want to make an intellectual argument or persuade someone, then write an essay or a piece of journalism, write nonfiction. Fiction… should feel as if you're living these things when you read or watch them. If you're so distanced by it that a character dies and you don't care, then to an extent the author has failed."
This story originally appeared on Esquire.co.uk. Minor edits have been made by the Esquiremag.ph editors.