The Ultimate Winds of Winter Resource (as of April 2021)

Everything you could possibly want to know about George RR Martin's forthcoming book THE WINDS OF WINTER

Introduction

Welcome to the ultimate Winds of Winter resource! This resource was first hosted on my old WordPress site. Unfortunately, WordPress embarked on a grand new design which made it untenable as a place to do longform writing. So, here I am on Substack, hoping that it goes well.

What I’d like to use this platform for is to do some writing on A Song of Ice and Fire, pop culture, history and provide you all with up-to-the-minute updates on my own novel: The Cautioner’s Tale: a book that many are calling The Tale of Two Cities of its generation. In fact, all of this Winds of Winter content is a cynical attempt to force you into caring about The Cautioner’s Tale so that I can make billions of dollars as a published author.

But none of you care about that bullshit (for the moment). You want the good shit. The Winds of Winter shit. So, let me introduce or reintroduce you to The Ultimate Winds of Winter Resource. This is my attempt to create the most thorough and complete resource of everything that George RR Martin, his editors and those in the know have said or written about The Winds of Winter. Further, this is actual The Winds of Winter news and information. So, you won’t find clickbait, rumors or bullshit below.

Here’s how everything is organized:

  • Basic Information

  • Writing Progress

  • Released Winds of Winter Sample Chapters (and where to find them)

  • Winds of Winter chapters that GRRM has read at conventions/appearances

  • Winds of Winter chapters that are known to exist but have not been released or read at conventions

  • Plot Points that GRRM or his editors have confirmed

  • Miscellaneous information

Spoiler Warning: Everything past this point will contain spoilers for The Winds of Winter.


Basic Information

First, the basics:

Publication Date: Unknown, but as of June 2020, GRRM hopes to have it complete prior to WorldCon 2021 (August 2021)

Expected Length: 1500 manuscript pages:  (Similar length to A Storm of Swords and A Dance with Dragons)

Publishing House: US: Random House Bantam Books/UK: Harper Voyager

Writing Progress

In April 2011, George RR Martin completed writing for A Dance with Dragons. The fifth book in A Song of Ice and Fire was then published in July 2011. After a long tour, Martin returned to writing new material for The Winds of Winter. Below, you’ll find everything that we know about George RR Martin’s progress on Winds from the earliest days of writing to the present.

I’ve organized the information into three separate categories categorized chronologically. 

The categories are:

  • Progress Reports (Manuscript Page Counts/Chapters): This is specific information regarding The Winds of Winter regarding the number of manuscript pages GRRM reported having complete or the specific chapters that George was working on/finishing.

  • Progress Reports (General): Think of this as “I’m working on TWOW”/”I’m making progress”, without specificity about page counts or chapters.

  • Progress Reports (Miscellanous): Over the years, Martin has said things about The Winds of Winter that are less quantifiable/qualitative. Things like “I’m not working on TWOW and ADOS at the same time” or “George won’t write a script for Game of Thrones, because he’s busy on Winds.” That’s what this section is for.

Of course, there is some data which crosses categories; so, I’ve made some arbitrary decisions on how to categorize them. Regardless, you’ll find everything in chronological order as best as I can tell. If you see errors or corrections, please feel free to comment on them!

Progress Reports (Manuscript Page Counts/Chapters):

  • In 2010, prior to completing A Dance with Dragons, GRRM cut one hundred manuscript pages/five chapters (Mercy (Arya I), Arianne I and II, The Forsaken (Aeron Greyjoy I) and Alayne (Sansa I) to The Winds of Winter. Link

  • In April 2011, George RR Martin cut an additional three chapters from the A Dance with Dragons to The Winds of Winter. Link

  • Additionally, there was a Bran chapter that was expected to appear at the end of A Dance with Dragons but was likely cut to The Winds of Winter. Link

  • George RR Martin sent a “set” of Braavos The Winds of Winter chapters to The Lands of Ice and Fire illustrator Jonathan Roberts to help with the map of Braavos in 2011/2012. Link

  • By June 2012, Martin reported to Spanish Rolling Stone that he only had two hundred pages complete for Winds. Link

  • In an interview with Spanish ASOIAF fan site Adria’s News in October 2012, GRRM reported having two hundred “really finished” manuscript pages for Winds with an additional two hundred manuscript pages in “rough version.” Link 

  • GRRM’s editor Anne Groell reported receiving a batch of one-hundred and sixty-eight manuscript pages for a contractual payment in February 2013. Link

  • At the Game of Thrones Season 3 premiere, GRRM told an interviewer that he was about a “quarter of the way done” on The Winds of Winter (~375 manuscript pages of an expected 1,500 manuscript page book). Link

  • By early 2014, GRRM refuted reports that he had one thousand completed manuscript pages for The Winds of Winter. Link

  • In November 2014, GRRM reported being “still in the middle of The Winds of Winter” (perhaps indicating being halfway complete on the book). Link

  • GRRM was writing a Winds of Winter chapter in June 2015. Link

  • In his mega-update for Winds, George reported that Winds is not complete by January 2016, and that he is “months away” from finishing. He does, however, have “hundreds of manuscript pages complete.” Link

  • Responding to a 2018 notablog comment asking which POV character he’s working on for The Winds of Winter, GRRM cryptically stated that he was writing about “Smudge.” Link

  • GRRM finishes three chapters for The Winds of Winter in June 2020 and reports “visiting” Arya Stark, Cersei Lannister, Barristan Selmy, Tyrion Lannister, Asha Greyjoy and Areo Hotah. He is making progress with both good days and bad days. Link

  • GRRM completes three more chapters from The Winds of Winter with progress on several more chapters in July 2020. “Still a long ways to go.” Link

  • Progress is being made on The Winds of Winter with GRRM “spending the days” with Melisandre of Asshai, Samwell Tarly, Victarion Greyjoy, Tyrion Lannister and Arya Stark by August 2020. Link

  • In November 2020, George was writing POV chapters from Tyrion and Cersei’s perspectives, also visiting Oldtown and Dorne and revising older chapters (Some of which were samples). He reports his work slowing down in previous months, but it was picking up again. Link

  • George reports in February 2021 that he wrote “hundreds and hundreds of pages” for the Winds of Winter, and that 2020 was his best year of writing the book so far, and he’s hopeful for finishing soon but still has hundreds of pages to write. Link

Progress Reports (General)

  • After completing A Dance with Dragons, GRRM stated in July 2011 that he hoped The Winds of Winter would not take as long to write as A Feast for Crows and A Dance with Dragons, but “no promises.” Link

  • GRRM planned to start writing new material for The Winds of Winter in early 2012 after the completion of his A Dance with Dragons publicity tour. Link

  • In a June 2012 Financial Times interview, GRRM reported that The Winds of Winter was “well under way” but still several years from completion. Link

  • GRRM was working on The Winds of Winter in June 2012 in addition to other writing projects. Link

  • GRRM refers to The Winds of Winter as “the Son of Kong” for the first time in late June 2012, says he’s working on it, with lots to do. Link

  • At Worldcon 2012, GRRM stated that he could write an entire novel about Arya Stark in Braavos as he had plenty of ideas about Arya’s adventures in Braavos. Link

  • At the red carpet premiere of Game of Thrones, Season 3 in March 2013, GRRM stated he was writing The Winds of Winter, but it would be a gigantic, fifteen hundred page book and not to expect it “next week.” Link

  • By early 2014, GRRM hoped to finish The Winds of Winter before the show caught up to him. Link

  • GRRM admits in March 2014 that he should have been done the book two years ago, but he’s working on it. David Benioff and Dan Weiss have seen certain finished chapters from the book. (One of these chapters is “Mercy”. The identity of the others is unknown.) Link

  • In 2014, GRRM decided against a cameo appearance in Game of Thrones, Season 4 to focus on The Winds of Winter. Link

  • After the release of the Mercy Sample Chapter (Arya I), GRRM stated that he had not done nearly as much rewriting for The Winds of Winter  as he had done for A Feast for Crows and A Dance with Dragons. Link

  • A fan asked GRRM whether he has finished pages from The Winds of Winter that he hasn’t submitted to his editor, and George responded, “Some.” Link

  • Harper Voyager editor Jane Johnson stated in 2014 that The Winds of Winter was unlikely to publish in 2015. Link

  • In January 2015, Jane Johnson stated that The Winds of Winter was not on the publishing schedule for 2015. Link

  • Johnson re-emphasized that The Winds of Winter was not on the publishing schedule for 2015 in an interview with The Guardian later that month. Link

  • In response, GRRM did not want Winds on any publication schedule until after the book was completed and delivered to his publisher. Link

  • While GRRM had written one episode for Game of Thrones per season for the first four seasons, he declined to write an episode for Season 5 in order to finish The Winds of Winter. Link

  • Interviewed by Access Hollywood in March 2015, GRRM stated that he still had “a lot of pages to write, but he also had a lot of pages written.” Link

  • GRRM cancelled appearances at San Diego Comic Con and the World Fantasy Convention to focus on writing The Winds of Winter. He will also not write an episode for Season 6 of Game of Thrones. Link

  • In a April 2015 Entertainment Weekly interview, GRRM stated his hope and desire to publish The Winds of Winter prior to the release of Game of Thrones, Season Six. Link

  • By July 2015, GRRM reported having a lot of work and being way behind on everything. Link

  • Alejo Cuervo (GRRM’s Spanish Publisher) expected The Winds of Winter in early 2016 to translate it into Spanish. Link

  • Seeming to back away from his hope to publish Winds by early 2016, GRRM stated in September 2015 that the book will be finished when it’s finished. Link

  • In October 2015, GRRM decided not to answer a fan-question in favor of continuing to write Winds. Link

  • GRRM dismissed speculations by Gawker Magazine that he had no pages complete for The Winds of Winter in 2015. – Link

  • At Balticon 2016 (May 2016), GRRM stated that he has not finished The Winds of Winter. (Source: me. I was there when George said it)

  • GRRM stated that he won’t be announcing the completion of The Winds of Winter at WorldCon in August 2016. Link

  • In a twenty year retrospective post on A Game of Thrones, GRRM says he has no announcement to make regarding The Winds of Winter in August 2016. Link

  • GRRM gets back to work on The Winds of Winter after WorldCon in September 2016. Link

  • Martin limited his 2017 convention appearance schedule to finish The Winds of Winter. He plans to keep a limited schedule until the book is done. Link 

  • GRRM won’t do a tell-all about his progress for The Winds of Winter, but he is working on Winds in early 2017. Link

  • A few days later, George reported making progress on The Winds of Winter and thinks it will publish in 2017. Link

  • In February 2017, GRRM thought Winds wouldn’t take four more years to complete. Link

  • GRRM working on Winds in March 2017 but seemingly struggling, saying “So much to do. And the days go by so quickly. I love my work, all my work, all my projects, all my children, but sometimes it seems as if the harder I work, the further I get behind.” – Link

  • GRRM does not have writer’s block though. – Link

  • In 2017, with Game of Thrones, Season 7 just a few days away from premiering, GRRM won’t comment on his progress on The Winds of Winter. Link

  • GRRM signed onto do writing for five adaptations of prequel series for Game of Thrones and was still working on Winds. – Link

  • The Winds of Winter remains “months away” from completion as of July 2017. GRRM hoped to have two Westeros books (The Winds of Winter and Fire and Blood) out in 2018. – Link

  • GRRM reported being “very busy” on The Winds of Winter in August 2017. Link

  • At a August 2017 St. Petersburg convention appearance, the publication date for The Winds of Winter was in a list of off-limits questions. The presser went on to state: “With great caution, we can assume that this will happen in the coming, 2018.” – Link

  • GRRM announced the completion and delivery of Fire and Blood, Volume One and states that The Winds of Winter is not coming out in 2018, but he’s returning to write it now that Fire and Blood is done. – Link

  • George has done some rewriting for The Winds of Winter by 2018 but admits that there have been distractions from writing the book too. Link

  • At the 2018 Emmys (September 2018), George reported making slow progress on The Winds of Winter, attributing the slowness of the book to its complexity. Link

  • In November 2018, GRRM is interviewed by The Guardian and re-emphasizes that The Winds of Winter is extraordinarily complex and is more like “twelve novels” than a single novel. Link

  • GRRM told Entertainment Weekly in 2018 that his publishers wanted Fire and Blood, Volume One first The Winds of Winter. Link

  • GRRM is interviewed by the Wall Street Journal in Fall 2018 and reported being up in his mountain cabin trying to “finish” The Winds of Winter. Link

  • After the success of Fire and Blood, Volume One, GRRM excitedly says he is going to give his fans The Winds of Winter – though not tomorrow or the next week. Link

  • In a March 2019 interview, GRRM reported not reading the scripts or visiting the sets from Game of Thrones, Season 8 due to being too busy working on The Winds of Winter. Link

  • George’s UK editor reported in April 2019 that she knows nothing about when to expect the manuscript for The Winds of Winter, except that George is working hard on it. Link

  • In a Fall 2019 interview, GRRM stated that he declined a final cameo in Game of Thrones, Season 8 to keep working on The Winds of Winter. Link

  • Martin tongue-in-cheek claimed that he has been chained to his typewriter to finish Winds by his assistants. Link

  • At the Game of Thrones, Season 8 premiere, GRRM reported that writing for The Winds of Winter has been going “very well” as of April 2019. Link

  • GRRM refuted reports that The Winds of Winter and A Dream of Spring were completed years ago. He has not begun writing A Dream of Spring and won’t until he finishes Winds. Link

  • In mid-May 2019, GRRM was at his home, working on Winds which remains incomplete. Link

  • After the conclusion of Game of Thrones, Season 8 in May 2019, Martin wrote about the show’s finale, saying that he’s still working on The Winds of Winter but won’t give a release date as he’s been burned before. He also says the ending to the books and show will be similar and different. Link

  • In May 2019, GRRM tongue-in-cheek stated that if he doesn’t have Winds in hand for ConZealand 2020, he can be imprisoned in New Zealand. Link

  • In an Entertainment Weekly interview, Martin reported that he has fixed ideas for The Winds of Winter but doesn’t feel the tremendous amount of pressure to finish that he did back in Fall 2015. Link

  • At WorldCon 2019, GRRM re-emphasized that he will finish The Winds of Winter before embarking on any other writing project. Link

  • In an interview with the Belfast Telegraph in July 2019, Martin reported cutting down on invitations to do things in order to finish The Winds of Winter. Link 

  • Early October 2019 had GRRM stating that he still had The Winds of Winter to complete. Link

  • During an October 2019 radio interview, GRRM talked about his process for writing The Winds of Winter and going to bed thinking about the scenes he’ll write, the dialogue he’ll use. Link

  • In the October 2019 Chicago Humanities Festival, GRRM stated that he hoped to have the rush of finishing The Winds of Winter “relatively soon.” Link

  • House of the Dragon is picked up for a full season run by HBO at the end of October 2019, but GRRM will not write a script for the show until after he’s finished The Winds of Winter: his top priority. Link

  • GRRM checked in with his agent, editors and publisher in New York City in November 2019. Link

  • By April 2020, GRRM was up in his mountain cabin, writing every day in order to finish The Winds of Winter. Link

  • Later in April 2020, GRRM remained in his mountain cabin, making progress on The Winds of Winter but still having good days and bad days of writing. Winds remains the only thing he is currently writing. Link

  • By the end of June 2020, GRRM was still writing The Winds of Winter. Link

  • In August 2020, GRRM reported being deep in the heart of Westeros, writing The Winds of WinterLink

  • In early September 2020, GRRM was writing The Winds of Winter most days and some nights. Link

  • By mid-September 2020, GRRM remains up in his mountain cabin, writing The Winds of WinterLink

  • By March 2021, George states he needs to finish Winds, and he’s heading back into Westeros. Link

  • In April 2021, George reports that he’s leaving his cabin in “a couple of months.” Link

Progress Reports (Miscellaneous)

  • In October 2013, GRRM stated that he thinks he will be finished A Song of Ice and Fire in seven books but admits to being wrong before. Link

  • After the release of the Mercy and Tyrion sample chapters, GRRM stated that he didn’t want to release further sample chapters. He later changed his mind. Link

  • In February 2015, GRRM was still planning to write A Song of Ice and Fire in seven volumes. Link

  • GRRM was not writing A Dream of Spring alongside of The Winds of Winter by mid-2015. Link

  • GRRM has not lost any TWOW chapters due to having them written in Wordstar 4.0. Link

  • In a notablog comment, GRRM stated that he won’t update his Winds progress monthly. Link

  • When a fan asked George about talking about his writing process for The Winds of Winter, GRRM declined, stating that he wouldn’t talk about that until after the writing was complete. Link

  • It would not be GRRM’s preference to split Winds into two parts. – Link

  • GRRM was annoyed in October 2016 with rumors that he’s quit writing The Winds of Winter. – Link

  • As of February 2017, GRRM probably won’t release or read brand new sample chapters from The Winds of Winter. Link

  • The manuscript for Winds has not been lost. – Link

  • GRRM will announce the completion and delivery of Winds months before the book is published. – Link

  • Some of GRRM’s editors and publishers advised splitting The Winds of Winter into multiple volumes, but by May 2018, GRRM was resisting such notions. Link

  • GRRM stated in 2018 that he’s not sure he wants to publish new sample chapters as he feels like he’s released too many already. Link

  • In 2019, GRRM again emphasizes that A Song of Ice and Fire will be seven volumes after he publishes the last two novels. Link

  • March 2021 has George reporting that he does his best work when he loses himself in his work. Link


Sample Chapters

Since 2011, George RR Martin has released seven sample chapters from The Winds of Winter in various formats. All of the released sample chapters are available in the A World of Ice and Fire app but can also be found online. In the previous edition of this resource, I copy/pasted summaries of the chapters, but here, I’ll simply link to the summaries on the Wiki of Ice and Fire.


THEON I

Release Date: December 28, 2011

Archive Link: HERE

A Wiki of Ice and Fire Summary: HERE

Cool, Additional Info About TWOW, Theon I

  • Theon I takes place during the chronology of ADWD. Link


ARIANNE I

Release Date: January 8, 2012

Archive Link: HERE

A Wiki of Ice and Fire Summary: HERE

Cool, Additional Info about TWOW, Arianne I

  • Arianne I (along with Arianne II – See below) were originally intended for publication for ADWD. Link

  • GRRM originally wrote this Arianne chapter in February 2010. Link


SER BARRISTAN I

Release Date: October 29, 2013

Archive Link: HERE

A Wiki of Ice and Fire Summary: HERE

Cool, Additional Info about TWOW, Barristan I

  • Barristan I (along with Barristan II – See below) was first read by GRRM at BosKone 2013 (Link) and then at WorldCon 2013 (Link) prior to its publication in the paperback version of A Dance with Dragons.


TYRION II

Release Date: March 20, 2014

Archive LinkHERE

A Wiki of Ice and Fire SummaryHERE

Cool, Additional Info about TWOW, Tyrion II

  • TWOW, Tyrion II was first read by GRRM at Worldcon in August 2013 prior to its publication in the A World of Ice and Fire app.

  • This chapter was released before Anne Groell read it. Link


MERCY (ARYA I)

Release Date: March 26, 2014

Archive Link: HERE

A Wiki of Ice and Fire Summary: HERE

Cool, Additional Info about TWOW, Mercy

  • “Mercy” had a pretty interesting publication history with GRRM writing the first version before abandoning the Five Year Gap circa 2001, then shifting it into A Feast for Crows, then A Dance with Dragons and finally placing it into The Winds of Winter prior to publication of ADWD. Link

  • GRRM has also talked about this chapter, stating that he may rewrite it a bit more prior to the publication of The Winds of Winter. Link


ALAYNE I (SANSA I)

Release Date: April 2, 2015

Archive Link: HERE

A Wiki of Ice and Fire Summary: HERE

Cool, Additional Info about this Sample Chapter: 

  • This chapter was originally completed/finalized in 2008 for A Dance with Dragons (Link), but GRRM later decided to cut it from ADWD to TWOW in 2009 Link

  • If you’ll recall from earlier, GRRM originally didn’t want to publish additional sample chapters after “Mercy”, but his publishers, editors and fans wanted him to, and he relented. Link


ARIANNE II

Archive Link: HERE

A Wiki of Ice and Fire Summary: HERE

Cool, Additional Info about this Sample Chapter:

  • This chapter was originally written in February 2010. Link

  • GRRM read this chapter first at WorldCon 2011 (Link) and then again at Sasquan 2015 (Link) before publishing it as a sample on his website in 2016.


Winds of Winter Chapters that GRRM has Read at Cons & Other Events

One of George RR Martin’s favorite pastimes is attending fan conventions. In years past, George was a frequent attender of Science-fiction and fantasy-theme conventions as an attendee, guest, panelist or even host. One of the cool things that George has done is read sample chapters for upcoming books. Back when he was writing A Dance with Dragons, George RR Martin read thirteen chapters from Dance prior to its publication.

Keeping with this tradition, GRRM has continued to read sample chapters from The Winds of Winter. Here are all the sample chapters with summaries of TWOW chapters that GRRM has read.


VICTARION I

First Read: March 16, 2012

Link to George RR Martin Reading It: HERE

Fan Summary: HERE (Part 1) and HERE (Part 2)

Cool Additional Stuff About This Chapter

  • In 2012, Martin stated that he hoped this chapter (and Tyrion I) would be published in The Winds of Winter in its present form but admits he might have to rewrite it into the best possible version. Link

  • Just before he did the reading, he stated that this chapter would occur five minutes after the end of events from A Dance with Dragons.


TYRION I

Release Date: April 6, 2012

Fan Summaries: HERE and HERE

  • GRRM read this chapter at MisCon in 2012 as well as in Stockholm in 2015 (Both links above).

  • In 2012, Martin stated that he hoped this chapter (and Victarion I) would be published in The Winds of Winter in its present form but admits he might have to rewrite it into the best possible version. Link


SER BARRISTAN II

Release Date: February 18, 2013

Fan Summary: HERE

  • GRRM read this chapter at BosKone in 2013 (Link) and Bubonicon in 2015. Link

  • When asked why Barristan’s chapters changed from pseudonyms to “Ser Barristan”, George said that he has a method to his madness. Link


THE FORSAKEN (AERON I)

Release Date: May 30, 2016

Fan Summary: HERE

Cool Additional Stuff About This Chapter

  • GRRM completed this chapter sometime before July 2010. Link

  • GRRM had originally offered the choice of reading this chapter or Arianne II at Worldcon 2011. Arianne was chosen instead. Link

  • In 2016, GRRM indicated that “The Forsaken” was one of many dark chapters in The Winds of Winter. Link


Unreleased Confirmed Chapters/POVs

Over the years, GRRM has stated that he has additional ASOIAF chapters that have not been read at conventions or released as samples. Previously, I had a small table here to show this, but within the past few months, there’s been a lot more material that’s been discovered or stated by George recently. So, instead, we’re going to bold the POV and bullet-point the chapter and link to where George talked about it!


Aeron Greyjoy: At Least One Additional Chapter

  • When asked if “The Forsaken” would be Damphair’s only chapter, GRRM answered “No.” Link


Areo Hotah: At Least Two Chapters

  • In October 2010, Elio Garcia Jr. talked with George about the Worldbook (Link) in which GRRM talked about moving three Dornish chapters to Winds. Two of the Dornish chapters GRRM moved were Arianne I and II (Link). He also stated in 2016 that he wasn’t planning for new Dornish POVs in Winds, but that Areo Hotah would continue as a POV character (Link). The third Dornish chapter moved to The Winds of Winter, then, is probably an Areo Hotah chapter.

  • GRRM was “visiting” Areo Hotah in June 2020. Link


Arianne Martell: At Least One Additional Chapter

  • Arianne III was a “completely unwritten chapter” by 2010, but GRRM planned to write it. Link


Arya Stark: At Least Four Additional Chapters

  • GRRM sent a “batch” of Arya Winds chapters to The Lands of Ice and Fire artist Jonathan Roberts in 2012 in order for the artist to develop the map of Braavos more fully. Original reddit post by redditor DutchArya. Link

  • In a 2013 Portugal con appearance, GRRM was asked what he was writing for Winds, and he responded “Arya.” Link

  • GRRM was returning to Westeros to write an Arya Chapter where she killed someone in June 2020. Link

  • In August 2020 was heading to Braavos to write Arya. Link


Asha Greyjoy: At Least Three Chapters

  • GRRM was working on an Asha chapter in June 2014. Link

  • In a 2017 con appearance (Link), Martin referred to reading multiple Asha Greyjoy chapters he mistakenly thought he had read as samples: “I’m not sure what I read or haven’t read, I think I’ve read some Asha Greyjoy chapters.” (h/t to redditor zionius_ for finding this.) Link

  • In June 2020, he was “visiting” Asha. This could be a reference to writing a new Asha chapter or revisiting previously-completed chapters. Link


Barristan Selmy: At Least One Additional Chapter

  • GRRM was “visiting” Ser Barristan in June 2020. Link


Bran Stark: At Least One Chapter

  • GRRM planned for a Bran chapter to be included at the end of A Dance with Dragons, but it didn’t make the final cut. It’s likely this chapter was cut to WindsLink


Cersei Lannister: At Least Three Chapters

  • GRRM was working on a Cersei POV chapter at Balticon in 2016. Link

  • GRRM was “visiting” Cersei in June 2020. Link

  • By November 2020, George was working specifically on Tyrion and Cersei POV chapters. Link


Daenerys Targaryen: At Least Two Chapters

  • GRRM was working on the Dothraki in 2012. This is likely a Dany chapter. Link

  • In a Galaxy’s Edge expanded interview from 2014, GRRM said, “I’m going back to The Winds of Winter and writing the next scene—I’ve got Dany in a particular situation. I’ve just got to worry about how does this scene resolve? How do I end this chapter? How do I phrase this sentence?” – Link


Davos Seaworth: At Least One Chapter

  • GRRM has indicated that Rickon will “appear” in TWOW. (Link) Also, Osha will return as a character  and will be influenced by Natalia Tena’s portrayal of her in Game of Thrones (Link). Additionally, GRRM has said that TWOW will have unicorns in it (Link). Davos Seaworth is on his way to Skagos by A Dance with Dragons — where Osha and the unicorns are. So, GRRM is probably referring to at least one Davos chapter where he meets Rickon, Osha and the unicorns.


Jon Connington: At Least Two Chapters

  • GRRM had a partially-written “complementary chapter” between Arianne II and Arianne III written by 2010 (Link). Given that Arianne II ends with her declaring her intent to sail to Storm’s End, this is probably a Jon Connington chapter.

  • At WorldCon 2011, GRRM said he originally wasn’t going to feature the Battle of Storm’s End in TWOW, but he decided he was going to write it (Link). This Battle of Storm’s End chapter would almost certainly be from the POV of Jon Connington.


Melisandre of Asshai: At Least Three Chapters

  • At the Guadalajara Book Festival, GRRM indicated multiple chapters for Melisandre. Link 

  • In August 2020, GRRM was writing “Mel” for TWOW. Link


Prologue: One Chapter

  • In 2014, GRRM stated that Jeyne Westerling would make an appearance in the prologue, but he stated that he never said she would be the POV. Link


Samwell Tarly: At Least One Chapter

  • In August 2020, GRRM was writing “Sam” for TWOW. Link


Theon Greyjoy: At Least One Additional Chapter

  • In GRRM’s 2016 Winds notablog update, GRRM stated that he was revising a Theon chapter. Link


Tyrion Lannister: At Least Three Additional Chapters

  • In June 2020, GRRM reported “visiting” Tyrion Lannister for The Winds of Winter. Link

  • In August 2020, GRRM was spending his days with his friend “Ty” (likely Tyrion Lannister) in WindsLink

  • By November 2020, George was working specifically on Tyrion and Cersei POV chapters. Link


Victarion Greyjoy: At Least Three Additional Chapters

  • In 2017 (Link), GRRM mistakenly said that he read a “couple of different Victarion chapters” as samples. He had only read Victarion I in 2012. A couple is commonly-defined as “more than two.” So, at least two additional Victarion chapters. (h/t/ redditor zionius_ for finding this. Link)

  • In August 2020, GRRM was working on “Vic” for TWOW: likely Victarion Greyjoy. Link


At present, the following POV characters have not been explicitly confirmed to return in TWOW. However, it’s likely that most-if-not-all of them will return as POV characters:

  • Jaime Lannister

  • Brienne of Tarth

  • Jon Snow


Plot Points from TWOW that GRRM has confirmed

During the last update, I, again, vomited data onto the screen. Here, we’re going to attempt a bit more organization by grouping plot points together in likely storylines or locations. We will also have an “miscellaneous” section where there aren’t enough data points to categorize by storyline or location. Additional help with this section was ascertained from a 2014 comment on /r/asoiaf by /u/feldman10 of the Meereenese Blot and additional help was provided by /u/zionius_. Thank you both!


The Winds of Winter Battles

  • In 2012, George RR Martin planned to open The Winds of Winter with two huge battles – the Battle of Winterfell and the Battle of Meereen. Link

  • By 2014, GRRM still planned to open The Winds of Winter “with a big smash with two enormous battles.” Link 

  • Originally the Battle of Storm’s End between Aegon VI/JonCon, the Golden Company, Mathis Rowan & Gilbert Farring was set to occur off-screen, but GRRM decided to write the battle out but hadn’t done so as of August 18, 2011. Link

  • GRRM’s US editor Anne Groell explained why the battles of ice and fire were cut in 2014. Link

  • GRRM talked at length about why the battles were cut from Dance to Winds, talking about how they were originally structured to intercut with each other. However, the battles were incomplete by the time George finished A Dance with DragonsLink


Arya Stark and the Riverlands

  • GRRM hinted that the giant wolfpack in Westeros (Nymeria’s) is a checkov’s gun, waiting to go off. – Link (h/t Watching_Closely)

  • Mercy’s identity is out the window. Link

  • “And by gone I mean that following that chapter Mercy can no longer have that identity obviously.” Link

  • At Balticon, GRRM mentioned that Arya would get her first period soon and that he would visit Arya/Gendry again. Link

  • We will learn more about the Order of the Green Hand in future books. – Link

  • Lady Stoneheart is important for The Winds of Winter (Link), especially in the context of her not returning to life “nice” in The Winds of Winter in 2017 (Link). She continues to be an important thread for The Winds of Winter in 2019. Link

  • The Green Men and Isle of Faces will come to the fore in later books. Link

  • Littlefinger’s nominal rule of the Riverlands will run into trouble. Link

  • George was writing an Arya chapter where she meant to kill someone in June 2020. Link

  • We will see Sandor Clegane in “the next book” (Probably The Winds of Winter) Link


Daenerys Targaryen and Tyrion Lannister

  • The books that Jorah Mormont gave to Dany in AGOT will be important to Tyrion’s storyline in TWOW. Link (h/t Yolkboy)

  • Daenerys will embrace her “fire & blood” Targaryen mantra – Link

  • Tyrion and Dany will intersect. Link

  • We’ll find out where whores go in WindsLink

  • GRRM has no comment about whether Daenerys or Tyrion will retire as POV characters once they meet.  Link

  • Dany will return to Westeros, though whether this will occur in TWOW or in a later volume is ambiguous. Link

  • A second Dance of the Dragons: In 2003 GRRM has said this will be “the subject of a book.” Link

  • GRRM asked for Dothraki translations for The Winds of Winter in 2013. Link

  • The bloodrider Mago will be a recurring character in The Winds of Winter. Link

  • The Dothraki will return in a big way in Winds. Link

  • When asked whether Jorah Mormont would get out of the “friendzone”, GRRM responded, “I would not bet on it.” Link

  • In a 2018 Entertainment Weekly interview, GRRM talked about Tyrion and Dany intersecting in The Winds of Winter again, framing it in the context of juggling the timeline of the book. Link

  • We will find out more about how dragons reproduce in future books. Link

  • There will be future revelations about Dany’s backstory, specifically about the lemon tree and the House with the Red Door. Link

  • In June 2015, GRRM was asked about Dany’s dragons and stated that Dany does not believe that the dragons were defeated, but maybe they will know about it in the future. Link

  • Dany would benefit from reading Fire and Blood, Volume One. Link


Dorne

  • GRRM confirmed that we’ll be seeing a lot of the Sandsnakes in The Winds of Winter at ComicCon 2014. Link (h/t Vaxis7 & Watching_Closely!)

  • The Sand Snakes, Arianne Martell, Doran Martell, Darkstar, Ellaria Sand and Areo Hotah will be up to quite a lot in The Winds of Winter. Link

  • When asked if Dany will burn the Water Gardens and the children in TWOW, GRRM responded, “Uh … no.” – Link

  • Elio Garcia Jr indicated in 2017 that GRRM has a detailed family tree for House Dayne that he’s retaining for The Winds of Winter. Link (h/t @LiesandArbor on Twitter)

  • GRRM knows the endstate of Arianne Martell but not characters like Feathers. Link

  • Events in Dorne in Winds and beyond will be nothing like what was seen in Game of Thrones. Link 


The North

  • GRRM confirmed in James Hibberd’s Fire Cannot Kill a Dragon that Stannis will burn Shireen in The Winds of Winter. Link

  • “Hold the Door” will occur in The Winds of Winter, but in a different context than what was seen in Game of Thrones. Link

  • Eastwatch-by-the-Sea will appear in future books. Link

  • In a script note from Game of Thrones, Season Four’s “The Lion and the Rose”, GRRM noted that they should build up the direwolf vs wolfhounds for Season Six, indicating that this may be an event that occurs in The Winds of Winter. Link


Miscellaneous Winds of Winter Information

Here is the last batches of information: miscellaneous bits of information we’ve learned over the years about The Winds of Winter.

  • At one point, GRRM believed that Ted Nasmith would illustrate the limited edition of The Winds of Winter (Link), but years later stated that Nasmith would likely not illustrate the limited edition. Link

  • GRRM reads Winds chapters aloud, because it helps him gauge if he’s hitting the correct comedic or suspenseful notes he wants to hit. When the audience doesn’t react the way he wants them to, he will rewrite the chapter. Link

  • GRRM is not inspired by Star Wars to complete WindsLink

  • Elio Garcia Jr & Linda Antonsson believe that GRRM & Random House will invite them back to take a look at The Winds of Winter before it publishes. Link

  • The Winds of Winter scene painted by Magali Villeneuve was featured in the 2016 A Song of Ice and Fire calendar. It depicted the end scene from TWOW, Mercy (Arya I). Link

  • There will be more weddings, deaths and betrayals. Link

  • The horn cover for The Winds of Winter is the current cover for the book, but that is subject to change. (Note: There has been some dispute over whether GRRM made a mistake or not in thinking this) Link

  • GRRM was originally unsure whether Roy Dotrice’s schedule and contract would allow him narrate the Winds of Winter audiobook (Link). Sadly, Roy passed away in 2017, and George wasn’t sure who would narrate The Winds of WinterLink

  • As of November 2016, GRRM indicated there won’t be more Dunk and Egg stories until Winds is done. Link

  • GRRM did not believe that the Arianne II sample chapter should be considered for a Hugo award.  Link

  • GRRM might do an “Ask Me Anything” on reddit after Winds is complete. Link

  • GRRM won’t be editing new anthologies until he finishes Winds. – Link

  • GRRM won’t be doing Ice and Fire interviews until Winds is completed. Link

  • During the writing of Winds, GRRM discovers plot holes that require rewriting chapters “all the time.” Link

  • When George is writing The Winds of Winter, he pictures the Iron Throne as painted by Marc Simonetti. Link

  • A Facebook employee contributed $20,000 to George’s Wild Wolf Sanctuary Charity to be a character in The Winds of Winter that will be killed off. He requested to be Valyrian. Link

Conclusion

So, I hope you’ve enjoyed this new version of the Winds of Winter resource here on substack. All of this could not have been made possible without the help of many. But the work isn’t done. I am certain I haven’t captured everything. So, I turn it over to you all: the readers of these posts. What have I missed? Comment below and link me to things that GRRM or his editors or anyone in the actual know said or wrote about The Winds of Winter, and I’ll gladly credit you with the find.

Thanks for reading. I invite you to follow me on twitter at @BryndenBFish. Additionally, PoorQuentyn and I have an ASOIAF Re-Read Podcast called NotACast where we analyze every chapter in ASOIAF one chapter a week. Come listen to us on Apple Podcastspodbaysoundcloudgoogle playspotifypatreon everywhere you get your podcasts!