In a "Winds of Winter" release date update George RR Martin has said that he understands the impatience of fans when it comes to the long awaited "Winds of Winter", the next book in the "Game of Thrones" series following "Dance of Dragons". "Winds of Winter" will be followed by "Dreams of Spring". George RR Martin has so far declined to give a tentative release date for "Winds of Winter" choosing to simply say that he has a manuscript of over a thousand pages that he is working on. George RR Martin periodically gives hints about the contents of the upcoming books, offering preview chapters of certain major characters online.

The latest "Winds of Winter" release date update from George RR Martin didn't offer much clues in terms of when we might expect the book, but it is known that "Game of Thrones" season 4 is premiering in spring 2014 on HBO so he is mindful of that fact. George RR Martin had a free screening in Santa Fe, New Mexico of the related episodes of "Game of Thrones" in the Jean Cocteau Cinema, which is owned by him. The free screenings began January 6. George RR Martin said with regard to his writing pace in "Winds of Winter", "It helps a little, but it also whets the impatience a little, so it's a double-edged sword. They're making television shows a lot faster than writing novels, so I need to speed up a little." George RR Martin did joke that he had a backup ending to "Game of Thrones" if necessary, saying that he could simply have the Red Comet wipe out all life in Westeros and Essos, "Two BIG books. 1500 manuscript pages each -- that's 3000 pages. I think I have a good shot. And you know, if I really get pressed, I've already established that red comet. I can just have it hit Westeros and wipe out all life."

When pressed for a "Winds of Winter" release date update, George RR Martin simply said, "When it's done!" He does acknowledge that he understands the impatience of the fans when it comes to the "Winds of Winter" release date, but ultimately wishes they would stop pressuring him about it. "It is great that so many people are eager for the next book and certainly these are the people who are paying my bills and allowing me to have a house across the street from my other house. But at the same time, sometimes I just wish they would stop pressuring me about it. It will be done when it's done. I'm working on it. I don't know what else I can say: I'm a slow writer, I've always been a slow writer, and these are gigantic books." George RR Martin did say that he knows what direction the "Winds of Winter" is going following the "Dance of Dragons". While he doesn't outline, he does have a broad sense of where the story goes, "I hate outlines. I have a broad sense of where the story is going; I know the end, I know the end of the principal characters, and I know the major turning points and events from the books, the climaxes for each book, but I don't necessarily know each twist and turn along the way. That's something I discover in the course of writing and that's what makes writing enjoyable. I think if I outlined comprehensively and stuck to the outline the actual writing would be boring."

When it comes to the "Winds of Winter" release date update from the sound of it George RR Martin is still writing and working on his massive manuscript. Given that he's released quite a few chapters for characters like Arianne Martell, Theon Greyjoy, Tyrion Lannister and others, along with news about a controversial Sansa Stark chapter, it does seem clear that George RR Martin has a decent portion of the story done. Of course it's not just the writing that takes a long time. The editing process itself is long and arduous and even if George RR Martin is finished writing it will likely take many months, if not a year for the massive manuscript to be edited down into a book. So far we can only speculate in what direction the "Winds of Winter" might go but so we have some thoughts about what to expect for Arya, Tyrion, Ser Barristan Selmy, Vicatory Greyjoy, Theon Greyjoy and the Battle of Meereen.

Check out other "Winds of Winter" release date news and spoilers here:

'Winds Of Winter' Spoilers: Why Is The Sansa Stark Chapter Pegged As 'Controversial' And What Is It About? [REPORT]

'Winds of Winter' Spoilers: Will Arya Stark Finally Return To Westeros As A Vengeful Trained Assassin? [REPORT]

Read 'Winds of Winter' Preview Chapters Online: Find Out Where To Get Spoilers For Tyrion, Ser Barristan, Victarion, Theon And Arianne [REPORT]

'Winds of Winter' Spoilers: Barristan Selmy Chapter in 'Dance of Dragons' Paperback Depicts Battle Of Mereen, Will The City Fall To Slaver Armies?

'Winds of Winter' Release Date Delay: New York Comic Con 2013 Panel Reveals Three New George R.R. Martin Books For 2014 [REPORT]