Writing. Notice the gun. Ever feel like that? Ever sit around naked? I have never sat around naked once. Even when alone, I take pity on God.
Are you ever influenced by a book's receiving a lot of attention? Did you rush out and buy THE GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO? How about THE DAVINCI CODE? (I see Karen Olson is talking about this too).
Are you more likely to read a book like Justin Cronin's THE PASSAGE because it is causing a media frenzy?
How calculating should an author be when writing a book. What sort of writer thinks I bet people will love a book with vampires or werewolves or mutilation or secret ancient texts?
I just read an interview with Muriel Burbery (ELEGANCE OF A HEDGEHOG) who said she gave no thought to such a thing when writing it. And I doubt most writers do. Most writers can't even tell if something is commercial or not, I imagine.
I read one of Cronin's earlier books, MARY AND O'NEIL when it came out and sent him a fangirl email, something I almost never do. I think it was the only time I ever did it, in fact. But I have to say I am somewhat disappointed that he is so clearly going for the best seller with this one. His earlier books sold around 70,000 copies. That seems like a very good number to me. Not Stephen King or Janet Evanovich territory but still...
Is Cronin wrong to try for a more commercial success. Can a huge blockbuster be as good as a smaller book? I'm sure it can. But most of them aren't. Maybe James Michener pulled it off. Anyone else?