The airline company Air New Zealand has offered George R.R. Martin a free trip to New Zealand so he can finish his next book, The Winds of Winter, which the author now says should be finished by July 2020. In a cheeky video, the airline talked about how the country only has six people per square mile and fantastic views to get inspired by.
Martin responded to the video on his blog. He says he was “tempted” by the offer, and added that he’s been to New Zealand before and has enjoyed its beautiful scenery. “I love New Zealand. You don’t need to convince me,” he said to the airline.
New Zealand is so beautiful that it might actually distract Martin from finishing his book, he said. “I fear that New Zealand would distract me entirely too much. Best leave me here in Westeros for the nonce,” he said.
Regarding the offer of a free flight, Martin said he appreciated the generous offer, but acknowledged, “I do have enough money to make it to New Zealand on my own.”
Instead, Martin said Air New Zealand should offer to fly other writers to New Zealand to help fuel their own creativity and to fall in love with New Zealand as he has. “And you have such big plans, I’m sure you could squeeze them in,” he said.
Martin will be back in New Zealand in 2020 for the World Science Fiction Convention in Wellington, at which he will serve as Toastmaster for the Hugo Awards. Intriguingly, Martin said he expects to have finished The Winds of Winter by the time the Convention is held in July 2020.
“If I don’t have The Winds of Winter in hand when I arrive in New Zealand for worldcon, you have here my formal written permission to imprison me in a small cabin on White Island, overlooking that lake of sulfuric acid, until I’m done,” Martin said. “Just so long as the acrid fumes do not screw up my old DOS word processor, I’ll be fine.”
The Winds of Winter is the latest chapter in Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire series, upon which HBO’s Game of Thrones is based. The final book, A Dream of Spring, will follow. According to Martin, the ending to his book series might be different to the HBO show. Or not.
The entirety of Game of Thrones Season 8 was controversial, and specifically the finale. Fans created an online petition asking for a remake, and Sansa actress Sophie Turner slammed it as “disrespectful.”