There are books that, as soon as they appear on the shelves, immediately turn into bestsellers and get crowds of fans ready to write fanfiction, do cosplay, organize groups on social networks and buy tons of souvenirs based on their beloved world. And there are quite popular stories that bring royalties to their creators, which never turn into super-bright stars. The readers seem to like them, but nobody becomes a fan.
Why is this happening? Let's take a look at the example of the work of Paula Braxton, author of the Witch's Daughter dilogy and the Chronicles of Shadows trilogy. It would seem that in her stories there is magic, and love, and intrigue. Here there is a variety of heroes, and an appeal to classical mythology, and a philosophical subtext, and immersion in several historical eras, which are intricately intertwined with each other in some works. But there is no desire to re-read them over and over again, to share links about the world with friends, to learn the spells used by the main characters. You just get to the last point, close the book and take a new one, already by a different author.
These are the real sensations from getting to know Paula's work, pleasant, moderately sweet, sometimes a little piquant, but … devoid of a unique flavor and does not create an emotional connection between characters and readers. And the reason for this lies in the naivety of the plot lines, sometimes too fabulous, in the absence of emotional details, because the author is much more concerned about the atmosphere, in the weak logical chains between the actions of both heroes and villains. Magic is too grotesque. The villains don't have a specific purpose, which we see in both episodes. They do evil solely for the sake of evil, not trying to change the world, or return love, or create anything. And even destruction is not included in their plans. They just exist and they are destined to be bad, like in a children's fairy tale. And then the main character gets stuck with a bone in their throat, too good in all her appearances and all so noble. She tries to avoid a decisive fight, but ends up destroying the enemy with a lot of "boo!" and "bang!" That is, magic also looks primitive and superficial due to the abundance of special effects, which has long been no longer a trend in fantasy literature. And all these attempts to draw philosophical and religious concepts to the plot, as in The Return of the Witch, are not perceived and seem foreign, albeit rather curious.
Perhaps the exception is the book "The Silver Witch". No, everything that was written above is still peculiar to her. But trying to drive the story from two time points, weaving them together, is a great idea. This creates intrigue and torments the reader for a long time, forcing him to wonder where the author's thought will lead him. Gradually comes the understanding that this is clearly a matter of heredity, which determines not only hair color, but also the presence of enemies. Some sense of what is happening is gaining. By the way, evil has a reason here too. And love can accept, forgive, judge, and therefore it seems much more dramatic and complex than, for example, in the dilogy "The Witch's Daughter", where only in the second part appears the one who is destined to become a companion of the main character and, as it were, playfully takes possession of her heart without any major obstacles.
Thus, the reason that not every book is destined to gain fans, even as bestsellers and readers, is due to the depth that the writer managed to achieve in the process of creating a story. How is the world shown, how disclosed are the heroes, is there an opportunity to turn into them, to feel all the emotions assigned to them by status? If all the answers are vague and vague, it will not be possible to hook the audience to the quick. Then the colorful cover and high-quality annotation, complementing the popular theme, of course, will help you earn extra money.But following in the footsteps of J.K. Rowling or Stephenie Meyer will not work. For a person is imbued only with what he passes through himself, and only when, for the time of reading, he is transformed into someone else. In the one about whom the pages are talking.