George R.R. Martin just offered fans a bit of hope on the progress of Winds of Winter, the tenth and final book [as a reader points out in the comments section, Winds of Winter is actually the sixth volume and not the last. One more is planned after that] in his Game of Thrones series, in an exchange on the blogs comment section of his blog.
“Not done yet, but I’ve made progress. But not as much as I hoped a year ago, when I thought to be done by now.
I think it will be out this year. (But hey, I thought the same thing last year).”
This is his first official statement, according to Entertainment Weekly, since the author’s post over a year ago when he announced he would not finish in 2016 [correction: that post was about not finishing in 2015 before the 2016 premiere].
EW says “It’s still possible Winds could be out by the time [the HBO series] Thrones returns for season 7, which isn’t expected until this summer.”
That’s probably wishful thinking. In December Martin said he has “missed several deadlines” and “Sometimes I look back and say, ‘Did it really have to be Seven Kingdoms?’ The Five Kingdoms of Westeros, that would have been good, right?’