There’s still no word on when A Song of Fire and Ice author George R.R. Martin will release the final two novels in the series, but the HBO adaptation, Game of Thrones, has decided to set their plans regardless. In an interview with Vanity Fair, showrunners David Benioff and D.B. Weiss say they would like to wrap the TV series up after seven or eight seasons. “It doesn’t just keep on going because it can,” Weiss says. “I think the desire to milk more out of it is what would eventually kill it, if we gave in to that.” Game of Thrones returns for its fourth season on April 6th at 9pm.
Although Martin has yet to write the last two books—The Winds of Winter and A Dream of Spring—he does have an overall plan for how the plot will wrap up, and Benioff and Weiss want to be on the same page. Benioff tells Vanity Fair:
“Last year we went out to Santa Fe for a week to sit down with him [Martin] and just talk through where things are going, because we don’t know if we are going to catch up and where exactly that would be. If you know the ending, then you can lay the groundwork for it. And so we want to know how everything ends. We want to be able to set things up. So we just sat down with him and literally went through every character.”
“I can give them the broad strokes of what I intend to write, but the details aren’t there yet. I’m hopeful that I can not let them catch up with me.”
There’s no sign that Game of Thrones will break from releasing one season per year, and season four is the final half of the third book. If Martin really hopes to stay ahead of the series, then he’s going to have to pick up the pace. The distance between the previous books in the series—A Feast for Crows and A Dance with Dragons—was six years.