Some say the current lockdown is a boon for writers, who can finally get around to finishing their novels, screenplays, etc. thanks to all the extra time spent at home. Tell that to Game of Thrones fans, who are still waiting for George R. R. Martin to make good on his promise to deliver the next installment in the series, The Winds of Winter. Now, in a blog on his website, Martin has confirmed that he is indeed using the downtime to forge ahead with the story of Westeros.

"I am back in my fortress of solitude again, my isolated mountain cabin. I'd returned to Santa Fe for a short visit, to spend some time with Parris, deal with some local business that had piled up during my months away, and of course fulfill my duties to CoNZealand, the virtual worldcon. But all that is behind me now, and I am back on the mountain again... which means I am back in Westeros again, once more moving ahead with Winds of Winter."
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The Winds of Winter is the planned sixth novel in Game of Thrones, and has been stuck in the writing process with George R.R. Martin for more than a decade now. The disappointment that many fans feel over the final season of the Game of Thrones tv show has further fuelled a desire on their part to see the series culminate in a better manner in the novels.

Billed as the penultimate novel in the series, The Winds of Winter is said to take the readers further north than any previous book. It will also see The Others, called the "White Walkers" in the show, taking on a much more prominent role in the narrative. The Winds of Winter will be succeeded by what is being touted will be the final book in the saga, titled A Dream of Spring, which will see the various problems plaguing the land of Westeros finally come to a conclusion.

In the past, Martin had promised that he would finish The Winds of Winter by July 29, even going so far as to promise fans they could imprison him if he missed the deadline. Well, the deadline came, and went with no news of the novel's completion, and some fans on social media seemed prepared to storm Martin's house with pitchforks and handcuffs, But even though the best-selling author has still not finished writing the novel, he seems to be keeping hard at work completing the much-awaited tome:

"Weeks and months go by when I never leave the cabin, or see another human being except whoever is on duty that week. I lose track of what day it is, what week it is, what month it is. The time seems to by very fast. It is now August, and I don't know what happened to July. But it is good for the writing." For the nonce, it is what it is. My life is at home, on hold, and I am spending the days in Westeros with my pals Mel and Sam and Vic and Ty. And that girl with no name, over there in Braavos."

This news originated at the author's own official website GeorgeRRMartin.com.

Neeraj Chand