July has come and gone, but The Winds of Winter still isn’t finished

George R.R. Martin promised fans he’d be done with The Winds of Winter by July 29, 2020 — but it looks like we can add that date to the list of missed deadlines.

It may not feel like it, but it’s been nine years since A Dance With Dragons brought us the fifth installment in George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire series — the very series that inspired HBO’s Game of Thrones. And fans have been waiting — some patiently, and others not so much — for the sixth addition to Martin’s story for about that long. Unfortunately, it doesn’t look like we’re there quite yet.

Comically, the author himself promised fans last year that they could “imprison him” if The Winds of Winter wasn’t complete by this year’s World Con. The convention was set to take place on July 29 this year, so it looks like Martin missed his deadline yet again. Cue Game of Thrones fans with the handcuffs.

Since World Con didn’t actually happen this year, due to the health crisis, it’s possible Martin can find a loophole in his original statement. Still, it’s a tad disappointing that the sequel still isn’t done — though there is reason for hope.

The 71-year-old author did give an update on his writing progress on July 19, sharing with his his blog followers that he’d completed another three chapters and is still working his way through his The Winds of Winter. Martin has revealed multiple times throughout the pandemic that he’s been using the extra time to work on the upcoming novelso it’s definitely coming down the pike. Unfortunately, he also advised fans to avoid getting too excited, as he still has a “long long way to go.”

At this rate, most fans will just be happy if we get to see The Winds of Winter over the next couple of years. Most of us have guessed at the series’ ending since Game of Thrones aired its finale back in May, but it’ll still be interesting to see how the books hold up.

We’ll be crossing our fingers that one day we’ll find out where Martin is going next. Until then … well, at least there are plenty of other books to enjoy.

What are you looking forward to the most when The Winds of Winter finally arrives? Share your thoughts and theories below!