Many across the world have practicedin a bid to slow the spread of . Among those staying indoors is mastermind George RR Martin, whose self-isolation may have led to a silver lining: progress on his long-awaited Winds of Winter novel.
"For those of you who may be concerned for me personally… yes, I am aware that I am very much in the most vulnerable population, given my age and physical condition," Martin posted to his blog, Not a Blog, on Tuesday.
"But I feel fine at the moment, and we are taking all sensible precautions."
The most exciting part: Martin wrote that, along with one of his members of staff, he's holed up in a "remote isolated location" where he's "spending more time in Westeros than in the real world, writing every day.
"Things are pretty grim in the Seven Kingdoms… but maybe not as grim as they may become here."
This is stunning news for those of us awaiting the sixth novel in Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire epic fantasy series.
The author has been working on the latest book for around eight years, periodically pushing its expected publication date back as he, including the for HBO. His last novel, A Dance with Dragons, took him six years to write.
Mid-last year,he'd bring the finished manuscript for Winds of Winter to sci-fi convention Worldcon in New Zealand, due to take place July 29.
"If I don't have The Winds of Winter in hand when I arrive in New Zealand for Worldcon, you have here my formal written permission to imprison me in a small cabin on White Island, overlooking that lake of sulfuric acid, until I'm done," he wrote on his blog.
We may not be able to hold him to that. The coronavirus outbreak has seen Australia , while in the US COVID-19 has . Several Disneyland theme parks , along with the cancellations of major events, from to .
As Martin writes at the end of his blog post, "Let us hope we all come through this safe and sound. Stay well, my friends. Better to be safe than sorry."