Photo: Rich Polk (Getty Images for IMDb)

Ever since HBO begrudgingly confirmed that Game Of Thrones will be ending after eight seasons, it’s been clear that the only people involved who really wanted the show to end at all (other than maybe some of the actors) were showrunners David Benioff and D.B. Weiss. It’s still a big hit for HBO, so the network clearly would’ve been happy to air Game Of Thrones forever, but now George R.R. Martin—who wrote the books the show is based on—has admitted that he also wanted the show to stick around as long as possible.

This comes from Variety, which caught up with Martin outside the Emmys, and he said that he initially thought the show would go for “11, 12, 13 seasons.” He was willing to settle for 10, as was HBO, but in the end he had to go with what Benioff and Weiss wanted because “they’re the ones actually working on” the show. Presumably, Martin’s desire to keep Game Of Thrones going was part of his famous reluctance to actually finish the damn books he’s supposed to be writing, since the show surely provided an easy excuse to avoid his actual work. “Oh, you need a draft of Winds Of Winter? Sorry, I’m doing important behind-the-scenes work on Game Of Thrones!”

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Luckily for Martin, his easy excuse isn’t going away entirely. He’s still involved in Jane Goldman’s prequel/spin-off series, even if he freely admits that he doesn’t have a whole lot to do with it, so nobody needs to worry about his literary output suddenly exploding.