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I Broke the Internet

Sorry about that.

 The upload of the new sample chapter from THE WINDS OF WINTER created so much traffic to my website and blog that the servers crashed.  This is the first time I've been able to get up myself all day.

 Anyway, it seems to be easing off some.  And we are looking at ways to increase capacity.

 The "reviews" of the chapter have been amazingly enthusiastic as well.  Thanks.   I am pleased that so many of you -- thousands and maybe tens of thousands, it would seem -- enjoyed "Mercy" so much.

 I mentioned that this chapter had quite a history.  It's true.  The first draft was written more than a decade ago.  Originally, it was intended to be the opening Arya chapter after the infamous "five year gap," her first appearance in A DANCE WITH DRAGONS as initially conceived.   Then it was supposed to be a part of A FEAST FOR CROWS, after I abandoned the five year gap and split the books.  Then it was going to be the concluding Arya chapter in A DANCE WITH DRAGONS.  But it seemed more like an opening chapter than a closing one, so shortly before ADWD was published my editor and I agreed to remove it from DANCE and shift it over into WINDS.  Of course, it has been revised, tightened, polished, and tweaked at every step of the way, so the version on my website has some significant differences from the "five year gap" version.

Some of you who enjoyed meeting Mercy may not have found the other sample we've put out there of late, a new Tyrion chapter.  That one is live and available with the ICE & FIRE app, and can be found at

iOS: https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/george-r.-r.-martins-world/id570015223?mt=8

Android: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.randomhouse.woiaf

Enjoy the read.


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Mar. 27th, 2014 09:39 pm (UTC)
Nope, still broken :( I'll try again later tonight. Can't wait!!
Mar. 27th, 2014 09:57 pm (UTC)
Hey George!

Excellent chapter, maybe one of the best of the whole series so far. If the rest of TWOW can live up to that, it's going to be a wonderful reading experience.

One small question regarding the timeline of the story: Do the events in "Mercy" take place before or after Kevan's death in ADWD?

Azad Injejikian
Mar. 27th, 2014 10:04 pm (UTC)
Thank you for the behind-the-scenes commentary on the chapter!

I can absoultely see how this would have been a great introduction to Arya after the five year gap: Her identity remaining hidden until the last paragraph would have been a great reveal / reintroduction to Arya, having not known her fate after ASoS.

It's great either way, and thank you for the sneak peeks :)

Edited at 2014-03-27 10:13 pm (UTC)
Mar. 27th, 2014 10:10 pm (UTC)
George you are Rock n Roll (RR)
It was a little like ordering tix to a rock concert...refresh..refresh..until finally..got it!
Mar. 27th, 2014 10:19 pm (UTC)
Since you mentioned the long history and multiple revisions you've done for this chapter, I was wondering if you'd comment on something? There's a bit of a debate raging over whether this chapter spoils the return to power of a certain Queen, or if those references were inadvertent leftovers from earlier drafts. Can readers assume that this is, in fact, the final draft of this chapter? Or did something perhaps slip through from a previous understanding of the storyline?
Mar. 27th, 2014 10:58 pm (UTC)
It is the current draft. I would not say it is the final draft. I always do one last run-through and polish when a book is turned in, and so eventually (NOT tomorrow, let's not start rumors here) I will do that with Mercy. Even before that, the chapter's placement in the novel often requires tweaks, and I do have a long history of moving chapters around and rearranging the chronology until I hit on the best possible sequence.
(no subject) - wolverineone - Mar. 27th, 2014 11:13 pm (UTC) - Expand
It would have made... - lord_varys - Mar. 28th, 2014 01:15 am (UTC) - Expand
Re: It would have made... - grrm - Mar. 28th, 2014 01:52 am (UTC) - Expand
Re: It would have made... - Jack Pittorino - Mar. 28th, 2014 10:54 am (UTC) - Expand
Re: It would have made... - grrm - Mar. 28th, 2014 04:37 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: It would have made... - Jack Pittorino - Mar. 29th, 2014 12:41 am (UTC) - Expand
Re: It would have made... - Jack Pittorino - Mar. 29th, 2014 12:16 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: It would have made... - Jack Pittorino - Mar. 29th, 2014 12:23 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: It would have made... - Jack Pittorino - Mar. 29th, 2014 12:24 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - aulus_poliutos - Mar. 28th, 2014 02:45 pm (UTC) - Expand
Mar. 27th, 2014 10:22 pm (UTC)
Arya's development throughout and where she has ended up is one of the most interesting aspects of the series, and I want to read this chapter so bad!

But I can't, because I think the servers are on fire or something.
Steven James
Mar. 27th, 2014 10:31 pm (UTC)
I thought the Son of Kong broke the Internet, but even still, great stuff!
Paulo Passos
Mar. 27th, 2014 10:32 pm (UTC)
This is a great chapter, keep up the excellent work. Greetings from Portugal.
Mar. 27th, 2014 10:45 pm (UTC)
Thanks for posting it! Truthfully I'll take anything I can get. Lately I've been viewing the Ice and Fire app and scrolling through the maps, learning about the locations in the far east we rarely read about. Interesting stuff, would love to hear more about them (Apparently Carcosa isn't just a locale in True Detective). Something to get me through the wait.
Brad Buckles
Mar. 27th, 2014 10:54 pm (UTC)
Thank you!
Exceptional chapter, George! In my opinion, saving this as an opening chapter for WINDS rather than a closing one for DANCE was absolutely the right move.

By the way, what are the chances of Mercy paying a visit to Cowboys owner Jerry Jones? The draft is coming up next month and I honestly can't stand the thought of him doing more damage to a team that is (at best) hurtling toward a 6-10 season.
Mar. 27th, 2014 10:55 pm (UTC)
Sadly the android app is not available in the UK
Mar. 28th, 2014 09:03 pm (UTC)
Or in Canada!
(no subject) - Nick Schellevis - Mar. 31st, 2014 11:34 am (UTC) - Expand
Brian Bowles
Mar. 27th, 2014 11:03 pm (UTC)
This was a great chapter. This past week has been great getting to read two new chapters from The Winds of Winter. I can't wait until the full book is here.

While reading the chapter, it mentioned that the Black Pearl was the lover of a "dragon king". My first thought was that this could have been the origin of Nettles (from The Princess and the Queen). Further research showed me that the original Black Pearl was one of Aegon IV's lovers and Aegon IV lived long after the time of the Dance. But it made me wonder if Nettles still had a similar Targaryen/Summer Islander orgin?

Keep up the good work!
Mar. 27th, 2014 11:04 pm (UTC)
Preview Chapter
Hearing about the writing process of some of these chapters is always interesting to me.

That chapter was really, really good. It makes my appetite for Winds all the greater! Can't wait to hear from the other characters that didn't make it into A Dance with Dragons

I also realized a re-read of the first few might be necessary to appreciate all the subtleties of the next book. I caught some of the subtleties in this chapter, but I'm sure I missed many others.
Mark Villanueva
Mar. 27th, 2014 11:04 pm (UTC)
New Chapter Mercy
I read it last night after I saw that is was available. I was about to tell one of my book reading friends today about the chapter, she already knew and exclaimed the site is down :((((

She is patiently waiting now but I know she will enjoy as much as I did too. I got to say, the subject of the chapter is one that many of us are chomping at the bit to know more about. She's got to be number one for me, and there is a very close second. But I rather not say anything about that.

Thanks again GRRM, Enjoy the moment, and I grow in further anticipation of the new book.
Mar. 27th, 2014 11:05 pm (UTC)
Wonderful chapter and tease. Thanks for sharing it with us!
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George R.R. Martin
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