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Dancing in Circles?

((Some of what follows may be vaguely spoilerish. Don't read if you hate spoilers).

A DANCE WITH DRAGONS just got a little shorter.

What's happened is, I've decided to move two completed chapters, from Arianne's POV, out of the present volume and into THE WINDS OF WINTER. This is something I've gone back and forth on. Arianne wasn't originally supposed to have any viewpoint chapters in DANCE at all, but there's this... hmmm, how vague do I want be? VERY vague, I think... there's this event that would of necessity provoke a Dornish reaction. The event was originally going to occur near the end of the book, but in one of my forty-seven restructures I moved it to the late middle instead. And the timeline then required that the Dornish reaction happen in this book and not the next one, so I wrote the two Arianne chapters and was going to write a third... and a chapter from another POV that would be a necessary complement to them, and...

But no, I've restructured again, and put the original precipitating event back close to the end of the book. Which means the Arianne chapters can be returned to WINDS, where I had 'em originally. It also means that I don't have to write that third Arianne chapter and the complementary chapter from the other POV... not yet, anyway... which moves DANCE two chapters closer to completion. (The move did mean I had to revise two chapters from another POV, which took place after the event in last week's draft, but now take place before said event, but fortunately that was just a matter of tweaking a couple of lines).

I suppose this is a good news/ bad news situation.

Bad news for those who want DANCE to be really, really, really long, as long as STORMS OF SWORDS or longer. This move makes DANCE four chapters (two written, one partly written, one entirely unwritten) shorter.

But it's good news for DANCE, since I'm now two chapters (the ones I hadn't finished) closer to completion. And hey, it's even good news for WINDS OF WINTER, since I now have four chapters done for that one (an Arya, a Sansa, and two Ariannes).

This, of course, is assuming that I don't change my mind again tomorrow and put everything back the way it was last week.

I am dancing, boys and girls, I'm dancing as fast as I can. But some days it does feel as if I am dancing in circles.

Comments

( 160 comments — Leave a comment )
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anywhere_but_nj
Jun. 27th, 2010 08:47 pm (UTC)
The length doesn't bother me. I'll be expecting something around 1000 pages - if it's either more or less, it happens and I'll read it anyway. If people are going to be upset because it's slightly (or massively, knowing how your chapters are :P) shorter and the book is closer to completion...then I'd be beyond baffled and just give them a confused look.

Glad to hear things are falling into place. And, of course, that we're that much closer to getting the book!
shesnotallthere
Jun. 27th, 2010 08:48 pm (UTC)
Your entries always make me very grateful that I was not born a writer.
majkia
Jun. 27th, 2010 08:49 pm (UTC)
hoping it all works well and we'll see a pub date for DwD soon!
fallenalexiel
Jun. 27th, 2010 08:57 pm (UTC)
Hang in there George; just when you think you've mastered all the steps, there are still some to learn eh? Keep dancing and certainly the circle will change.
mishmarlayla
Jun. 27th, 2010 09:01 pm (UTC)
good news!!
I think, since its gonna arrange the book better, and also making it coming out faster :)
After dance will be out, there will be less pressure on the WINDS OF WINTER, and so things might flow even better.

I have a question but I have no place to ask you George so Ill do it here: Do you think the HBO show will somehow, change your view on some characters and how you going to continue their story to the end?
Just wondering.
I hope the show wont bother you too much, cause I think the books are more important, to end the saga that was started and in the heart of many fans (of course I'd like to watch the show, but it might do some effect on progress or on how things will end up :) )
lord_varys
Jun. 27th, 2010 09:02 pm (UTC)
Since you seem to be in a talkative mood...
... first, it's good to get a confirmation that there will be further Arianne chapters in future volumes - after all, it was possible that all the 'new' POVs from FEAST were going to be one-way characters.

In any case, I just hope that this Dornish situation is not as much a cliffhanger as the whole Cersei situation in AFfC (although I fear it is).

Second, does this 'situation' has anything to do with the notorious Meereenese Knot?

Oh, and a more general question: Do you know how many chapters you still need to write to finish DANCE? From the situation as it is today? We only know of the two (?) yet unfinished Meereenese Knot chapters (if they are still unfinished) and the Epilogue, which is troubling you...

By the way, is this going to be a 'real' Epilogue from a new POV - as it was in STORMS - or just the last chapter of the book from a established POV. I actually liked the fact that you introduced the concept of an Epilogue in STORMS, and was disappointed that there was none in FEAST (but it makes kind of sense, though, to close the book with the reappearence of 'Pate').

I really start to think that writing this book must really be hell...
vanillakokakola
Jun. 27th, 2010 09:29 pm (UTC)
i've been wondering for a while - do you anticipate that this is the hardest book of the series to write? do you think that as everything draws closer to completion it will be easier to pull everything together more quickly? no mereeneese knot, no shuffling chapters between books, no more restructuring the rest of the series (since once you reach closer to the end it will be structured), etc.

this isn't necessarily a panicky, demanding "when will the book(s) be done?!" question, just wondering whether the wait between all of the remainder of the books will be this long (again, out of curiosity, not a desire to complain), or if you anticipate that the writing process will slowly speed up as the loose ends become tied up.
grrm
Jun. 27th, 2010 11:17 pm (UTC)
I sure HOPE this is the hardest book in the series to write.

(no subject) - flowzilla - Jun. 29th, 2010 10:37 am (UTC) - Expand
10zlaine
Jun. 27th, 2010 09:34 pm (UTC)
Dearest George,

The only bad news, as far as I'm concerned, would be your announcement that you've hit an interminable spell of writer's block.
jpclemen
Jun. 28th, 2010 05:25 am (UTC)
Downsides...
Well, this appears to confirm that Sansa will still be alive, which *I* consider a downside. :-)
Re: Downsides... - pearl_gemstone - Jun. 28th, 2010 07:12 am (UTC) - Expand
Re: Downsides... - princeopansies - Jun. 28th, 2010 04:31 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: Downsides... - astro_tiger - Jun. 28th, 2010 08:51 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: Downsides... - youngyinzer - Jun. 29th, 2010 12:55 am (UTC) - Expand
nutmeg3
Jun. 27th, 2010 09:35 pm (UTC)
I can't believe you passed up an opportunity to tell us you're dancing with dragons. *g*

Seriously, thanks for keepping us updated, and I choose to be in the good news camp. :-)
beirn_ie
Jun. 30th, 2010 01:40 pm (UTC)
thanks for the update :) It's good news, and makes the prospect of the new book even more exciting. Love to hear how it's going!
blueseaisland
Jun. 27th, 2010 09:44 pm (UTC)
sweet news :) is always good to see the Dornish in action - thank you for the update!
asms26
Jun. 27th, 2010 09:52 pm (UTC)
Great News!
Great News in more ways than one!

Book closer to finished.
GRRM happy with the progress and ordering of chapters.
Arya still alive in the following book! Here's me hoping that having an Arya chapter already written for the following book means you aren't getting rid of my favourite character too soon!
werthead
Jun. 27th, 2010 09:57 pm (UTC)
Interesting news. Intriguingly, I note you don't mention the two Cersei chapters that you'd previously mentioned as having written for TWoW which you'd been considering moving up to ADWD. Does that mean we can take it that Cersei is in ADWD then? Or is that far too spoilery an answer? :-)
grrm
Jun. 27th, 2010 11:18 pm (UTC)
Cersei is still in DANCE... at the moment.
(no subject) - werthead - Jun. 28th, 2010 12:28 pm (UTC) - Expand
darthbek
Jun. 27th, 2010 10:02 pm (UTC)
Dance Away
I'd rather get Fred Astaire than Fred Flinstone. Dance away.
dboyd07
Jun. 27th, 2010 10:15 pm (UTC)
Yehhhhhhhh!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Thank you for the update! ... Light at the end of the tunnel!
psychic_river
Jun. 27th, 2010 10:29 pm (UTC)
Interesting update
It's good news for me, since I'm more interested in getting on with the next book than having it be the longest book in the series. Also, it is nice to know that some chapters for Winds of Winter have been written.

Out of curiosity, how many chapters have been written so far for Dance with Dragons? Or is that too much info to reveal at this time?
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