I've seen a flurry of articles with a similar headline. I admit mine is rather "dynomitish" and to be honest, I have no idea if these articles are based on anything more than pure fancy and rumor.
It must be said though that Martin has kept fans of his A Song of Ice and Fire series waiting for a very long time in between books. Too long, some of us fans would say. I see no excuse for taking so long on a series other than, say, laziness or writer's block. Gaiman says Martin isn't our b*tch and maybe he's right, but I would never keep readers waiting so many years in between books. It isn't nice to say but I'll say it anyway - we may have another Robert Jordan issue here.
It got me thinking about myself as an indie writer/author and the speed at which we indies can write and publish a book. Some look askance on that and I can see why. Some indies put out books that aren't ready. Or couldn't even be classified as books. But many of us don't. We can put out a professional looking ebook and even a professional looking print book in a few months, some less than two months. I can write and edit a full length book in four months or less and have it ready for release within that time frame. I work a regular job and I have lots of other things going on in my life. And I've written complex, long fantasy books as well in that time frame. I'm not talking about only 70,000 - 80,000-word novels. I'm also a pretty slow writer compared to some indies I know.
I think this is what is going to get fans riled up as we are always riled up when it comes to knowing when that next book in the series is coming out; Martin is busy working on all kinds of other projects and that's fine - but why keep us waiting so long on what we REALLY want? What is the point of that? It's like keeping a customer waiting for as long as you can, simply because you can. It's a lack of respect for the people buying your stuff in my opinion. I understand the concept of taking your time to get the thing right. Trust me on that one but at what point does it become laziness, a cavalier attitude or apathy? Or is it fear? Now that's another can of worms I might examine in another post: fear of finishing the series. A legitimate issue.
Here's my fear: my fear is that the TV show will end before the book series and I am a fan that prefers the books over the show. As good as the show is/was (I didn't bother to watch this current season and have no plans to. Too many changes have been made) I want the books because they are superior. Oh well. Whatcha gonna do? Just wait, I guess. After all, he knows we're gonna buy it no matter how long the wait. I guess that's why he makes us wait so long. Because he can.
I guess that's another thing he has in common with my favorite author, Tolkien; they can both write a darned good story and they both make readers wait a looooong time for them. :(