George R. R. Martin is such a literary tease. He spent six years writing and rewriting the popular A Dance With Dragons, because he decided he had other projects that needed attention, as well. Obviously, why not let your most popular series suffer when you can do obscure stuff no one cares about? It seems, though, with the upcoming sixth book in the Song of Ice and Fire series, Martin has the next book in the series well on its way to being written.

Well, he at least has a little of the upcoming title written. On his personal website, Martin has released the first chapter of the upcoming The Winds of Winter. The available chapter is told from Theon’s perspective, and takes place in the days after he and Jeyne Poole – still disguised as Arya – escaped the clutches of the crazy Roose Bolton.

The released chapter is not much in the way of reassurance that The Winds of Winter will have a more timely release; however, I have hopes the popularity of the HBO series may actually do something about getting titles written more quickly. The new chapter does give some spoilers about Theon’s frame of mind, about Theon’s sister Asha’s attempts at heroics, and about the Karstark's betrayal of Stannis. It’s not the most action-packed block of text I’ve ever read from A Song of Ice and Fire title, but it is serviceable enough to tide me over. You can check the chapter out over at Martin’s personal site.

For a chapter as decent as the one offered, I’ll even forgive Martin the crappy purple-on-lighter-purple webpage the man has put together.

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