George RR Martin
'The Winds of Winter' release date might come as a surprise to the fansReuters

Is George R.R. Martin is not happy with the ending of Game of Thrones? As the final season of Game of Thrones is about to air in April, it seems that the author of the books George R.R. Martin "mixed feelings about that."

Reportedly George R.R. Martin's masterwork fantasy saga is set to reveal its epic conclusion on HBO, and not on the printed page where he launched his tale 23 years ago.

"It's been an incredible ride," the author tells EW. "And almost all of it has been great. Obviously, I wished I finished these books sooner so the show hadn't gotten ahead of me. I never anticipated that."

Apparently, Martin has famously struggled for eight years to finish the sixth book in his A Song of Ice and Fire series, The Winds of Winter, with no publication date set. It is being reported that there's also a planned seventh novel, A Dream of Spring and on paper, the sprawling epic, detailing a clash of kingdoms in Westeros and Essos, halted in 2011's A Dance With Dragons with the cliffhanger murder of Jon Snow — a twist that capped the show's season 5 finale in 2015.

Apparently, since then, it's been unclear how closely the show's storyline sticks to Martin's future books. It is known that years ago, Martin explained to Game of Thrones showrunners David Benioff and Dan Weiss his rough outline for how he plans to end his saga. And as fans of the books soon learned, the show started making significant departures from the books well before they reached the end of his published narrative. And as such the showrunners were able to take creative liberties with their stories. So as of now, the books could end up completely different from the series, so fans could be treated to a completely different ending in the books.

Emilia Clarke, Peter Dinklange, Conleth Hill, Nathalie Emmanuel, Liam Cunningham and Kit Harington in a still from Ep 4 'Spoils of War'
Emilia Clarke, Peter Dinklange, Conleth Hill, Nathalie Emmanuel, Liam Cunningham and Kit Harington in a still from Ep 4 'Spoils of War'HBO

Reportedly Martin initially contributed one script per season to the series, then halted his contributions. "After season 4, George made a conscious decision to devote himself to the books," Weiss says. "Anybody who's read the books knows that task in and of itself requires about 64 hours a day to do properly, and the differences between the show and the books became difficult to track in parallel — it's almost like he was in a weird science-fiction movie trying to keep two similar-but-different universes in his mind at the same time."

The final season of Game of Thrones will air in April. 

So for now apparently, Martin will continue to work on Winds, and watch along with his fans as the television version of his saga that has obsessed millions around the world reaches its climactic finale.

"It's the end for a lot of people," Martin says. "It's not the end for me. I'm still deeply in it. I better live a long time because I have a lot of work left to do." We can't wait for the final season of Game of Thrones.