I love George R. R. Martin. I love his work, and he's a fantastic person. I've had the pleasure of chatting with him on a few occasions... he first emailed me after he saw this strip, and I was honored to interview him on a panel at a convention we both did at Harvard. He's really nice, and I'm thrilled that The Song of Ice and Fire has seen such success in the mainstream lately (though it's unfortunate that similar success in video games still eludes his franchise).
With that said, I sometimes find myself terrified that something is going to happen to him before he finishes the book series.
Nobody can or should ask him to write any faster than the process allows. The work happens as the work happens, and we'll get the books when they're ready to be had. So please don't assume that today's strip carries with it any sentiments other than playful ribbing. Still, ASOIAF and that world has been a part of my life now for nearly twenty years now, since I happened to pick A Game of Thrones off a shelf and decide to buy it after finding the promise of "a world where winter can last decades" intriguing. So, I won't lie, sometimes I get a twinge of selfishness thinking "I must know how it ends."
Supposedly he's told the showrunners at HBO how things play out, and what happens to which characters... and that's probably necessary since it seems entirely possible that the seasons will outpace the books (especially since the books started getting larger and more complex). I think that's weird, though. I don't want to see this story play out on television first, and in books later.
I enjoy the HBO series because it's for-the-most-part faithfully adapted from a story that I love... but it doesn't come close to an equal or a replacement for the books. So much is left out, so much is changed for the medium... I don't mind that when I read the books now, the characters in my head now look like the actors on the show. But I'd hate for the show to be the only way for me to connect with those characters.
I'll wait as long as it takes for this story to play out. I'm in no rush. But in the meantime, does anyone else want to pitch in and buy a "popemobile" to keep our GRRM safe?