“How the f**k do you write so many books so fast?”: George R.R. Martin Needs to Learn Stephen King’s ‘6 Pages a Day’ Process That Helps Him Finish Books at Blistering Speeds

The two authors sat down together to talk about their works, but chiefly to promote Stephen King's 2016 release, End of Watch.

George RR Martin and Stephen King
Credits: Wikimedia Commons/Jarekt and Julle

SUMMARY

  • Stephen King and George R.R. Martin sat together at an event and talked about how they write their works.
  • King revealed to George R.R. Martin, after the Game of Thrones author asked him, how he managed to churn out books so quickly, when he would take years to just complete chapters.
  • If George R.R. Martin took Stephen King's approach, it would take him less than a year to finish his 1700 page behemoth that is still pending completion, 13 years since his last release in the series.
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When it comes to churning out books, Stephen King and George R.R. Martin could not be further apart in their approach to writing books. While Martin takes quite the amount of time (given that his books are much bigger and merit more thought due to the complex nature of political intrigue) to finish his books, Stephen revealed how he is able to churn out so many books in a year.

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Bill Skarsgard as Pennywise in the adaptation of IT, a novel by Stephen King
Bill Skarsgard as Pennywise in the adaptation of IT, a novel by Stephen King

Sitting down for a talk together Geroge R.R. Martin and Stephen King discussed a myriad of things, chief among them how King was able to get so many books out so fast. King was kind enough to let Martin and the audience know the process that he follows to ensure a steady supply of completed books for his publisher.

Stephen King aims to finish 6 pages a day no matter what

Image via Stephen King In His Own Words Featurette
Stephen King In His Own Words Featurette | YouTube

George R.R. Martin, who genuinely takes an insane amount of time to write his books, decided to ask Stephen King how he managed to get so many books out so fast. The IT author decided to break down his process for churning out the amount of books that he does, saying:

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Here’s the thing: There are books and there are books. The way that I work, I try to get out there and I try to get 6 pages a day. So with a book like End of Watch, and I work, and I work everyday- three-four hours-and I get those six pages and I try to get them fairly clean. So if the manuscript is, say, 360 pages long, that’s basically two months’ work — but that’s assuming it goes well.

King focuses on getting his quota of pages out every day, and that can be very difficult given that there are good days and there are bad days. As most writers would know, there are days when a brisk ten pages worth of story can be done over an afternoon, and then there are days when authors struggle to get even half a page’s worth of writing done in the entire day.

If Geroge R.R. Martin had taken Stephen King’s approach, Winds of Winter would have been done in a little under a year

George R. R. Martin
The Winds of Winter

Suppose Geroge R.R. Martin was able to do six pages a day, which, if matched with his 2022 update of 1700 pages, it would take 284 days for Martin to get the book done, which is about nine and a half months. Given that Dance of the Dragons hit shelves all the way back in 2011, it has been a slow and odd thirteen years since the last entry in the Song of Ice and Fire series.

284 days would have been a short wait compared to the amount of time that fans have had to wait between novels. The first novel in the series came out all the way back in 1996, and since then the shortest wait between two novels in the series has been between A Clash of Kings and A Storm of Swords, which were released about 22 months apart, which about the time it has taken the second season of House of the Dragon Season 2 to come out, since the airing of the first episode of Season 1 of the prequel series.

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House of the Dragon begins streaming Season 2 on HBO Max on June 16, 2024.

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Written by Anuraag Chatterjee

Articles Published: 767

Anuraag Chatterjee, Web Content Writer
With a passion for writing fiction and non fiction content, Anuraag is a Media Science graduate with 2 year's experience with Marketing and Content, with 3 published poetry anthologies. Anuraag holds a Bacherlor's degree in Arts with a focus on Communication and Media Studies.