Let's face it: GRRM is never going to finish aSoIaF

George Martin is never going to finish aSoIaF

  • Agree

    Votes: 14 77.8%
  • Disagree

    Votes: 3 16.7%
  • I honestly thought he died years ago

    Votes: 1 5.6%

  • Total voters
    18

afa

Journeyed there and back again
#61
It's really interesting to see some authors you consider mainstream. I had to google who Michael Crichton and John Grisham were. Had never heard of them.
Really? I'm surprised. Crichton has sold something like 200 million books, and Grisham also is in the same neighborhood. Both of them have also had several of their books turned into movies. Grisham, in fact, had a streak where he had a book hit #1 on the New York Times bestseller list for like 12-15 years straight. I'd say they fit anyone's definition of mainstream.

In fact, when compared to Fantasy authors, no one apart from Tolkien or Rowling is really in the same league. (Stephen King, too, if you consider him a Fantasy writer.)


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Silvion Night

Sir Readalot
Staff member
#62
Really? I'm surprised. Crichton has sold something like 200 million books, and Grisham also is in the same neighborhood. Both of them have also had several of their books turned into movies. Grisham, in fact, had a streak where he had a book hit #1 on the New York Times bestseller list for like 12-15 years straight. I'd say they fit anyone's definition of mainstream.
He's immensely popular here in the Netherlands. The movies that are based on his books have always done very well at the box office too.

@Andrew.J : I remarked upon this before in a thread here ('Fantasy: an Anglo-Saxon preserve') in which I argue that most popular fantasy authors are from Anglo-Saxon countries. Alucard rightfully argued that for a big part this has to do with the bigger audience (lucrative for publishers). One could argue that this is at the heart of the fact that there are hardly any Lithuanian fantasy and sci-fi writers; the audience is comparatively speaking too small. Same goes for the Netherlands.
 

Alucard

In the name of the Pizza Lord. Charge!
Staff member
#63
I had to google who Michael Crichton and John Grisham were
I've seen Michael Crichton name pop up here and there, but I couldn't tell you what he writes or name a single book.
John Grisham I've never heard or seen that name before.

Who you know and don't know has a lot to do with your own literary bubble as well as reading habits of your social circle.
 

Silvion Night

Sir Readalot
Staff member
#64
Have you heard of any of these films Alucard? They're based on Grisham novels. It's mostly juridical dramas.

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Peat

Journeyed there and back again
#65
Every time Grisham releases a book, there's posters all over London Bridge. I had to look up who Crichton was.

p.s. On the Anglosphere thing, I'm still waiting for some English second language authors to make it big by writing in English and going straight to the Anglosphere publishing houses. So far Aliette de Bodard is the only one I can think of but she's not that big yet.
 

Sneaky Burrito

Crazy Cat Lady
Staff member
#66
I've seen Michael Crichton name pop up here and there, but I couldn't tell you what he writes or name a single book.
Jurassic Park?
 

S. K. Inkslinger

Will likely be killed by a Lannister soon
#67
I had never heard about Michael Crichton before, but I often see books by John Grisham in the countries that I live in. That, alongside Dan Brown and James Patterson are what dominated over the crime/ mystery section of most bookstores in my country. (Although I don't actually read anything besides fantasy, so I guess I'm not extremely accountable on this :playful:)
 

afa

Journeyed there and back again
#68
I've seen Michael Crichton name pop up here and there, but I couldn't tell you what he writes or name a single book.
John Grisham I've never heard or seen that name before.
That's interesting.

Which part of the world did you say you live in? Are there particular genres that tend to be more popular there, like SFF? Or maybe local/regional authors have a stronger presence?
 

afa

Journeyed there and back again
#69
I had never heard about Michael Crichton before, but I often see books by John Grisham in the countries that I live in. That, alongside Dan Brown and James Patterson are what dominated over the crime/ mystery section of most bookstores in my country.
Well, one reason might be that Crichton died several years ago, so there haven't been any new releases to be promoted.

It looks like Crichton is even less known here than Grisham. I guess this might be a case where the author himself is not globally known, even though his works are. If you've seen or even heard of movies like Jurassic Park, Disclosure, Sphere, Timeline, those (as well as several others) are all based on Crichton's books. The long-running TV show ER was created by him. Also, if you've seen or heard of Westworld (I haven't yet, but it seems to be all the rage), that is based on a film Crichton made years ago.
 

S. K. Inkslinger

Will likely be killed by a Lannister soon
#70
Well, one reason might be that Crichton died several years ago, so there haven't been any new releases to be promoted.
It looks like Crichton is even less known here than Grisham. I guess this might be a case where the author himself is not globally known, even though his works are. If you've seen or even heard of movies like Jurassic Park, Disclosure, Sphere, Timeline, those (as well as several others) are all based on Crichton's books. The long-running TV show ER was created by him. Also, if you've seen or heard of Westworld (I haven't yet, but it seems to be all the rage), that is based on a film Crichton made years ago.
Reading the post I was like: Jurassic Park? Yup. Timeline? I think I've seen that one.
Then- Westworld?! I'm a complete fan of the series! I heard that there had once been a movie version of it a long while ago, I guess this is the one?
 

afa

Journeyed there and back again
#71
Reading the post I was like: Jurassic Park? Yup. Timeline? I think I've seen that one.
Then- Westworld?! I'm a complete fan of the series! I heard that there had once been a movie version of it a long while ago, I guess this is the one?
Should be, yeah. Sometime in the '70s.

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ExTended

Journeyed there and back again
#72
In my country, Bulgaria, which is about 6mil. people we do get most of the well-known fantasy works, and I'd guess Sci-Fi too, since both genres have not big, but very devoted followings in the country and publishers can count on that following the keep the genre going. That being said - no one here produces audiobooks, because too few people would be able to afford paying the exuberant audiobooks prices and we don't have a Bulgarian Audible or something. We are also not getting e-books - if you want to read a Bulgarian translated e-book, you'd have to wait for someone to scan it( pirate it). I don't know whether there is some issue with licensing e-books as a whole, or if they prefer to sell the physical things for some reason, but there you go. So the people who own Kindles could buy the e-books in English, or pirate the Bulgarian versions, and since not everyone is that savvy in English you get the picture. So much lost potential there.

As of Rothfuss and him being rich - it's pretty simple. As someone said - he transcends the fantasy genre. And this is especially viable when you can transcend into mainstream YA-fantasy - the one with 80% women demographic.

The example is not perfect, but bear with me. A relatively good book( 8.0/10 to 10/10) of a debuting author in fantasy could bring its author around 60k advance. 100k if his book is really something the editor believes in.

The same quality could bring an author of a YA-Fantasy debut novel 1 000 000$ advance. Because there's just that much difference in the number of fans in both genres. And publishers deem it far easier to market a good debut book in YA. So if you publish fantasy, but you manage to tap into YA, your sales go wild. And Kingkiller Chronicles did just that.

Another thing to consider - word to mouth in fantasy. In my country at least, around 2007 when Rothfuss got published, he had no competition whatsoever in getting "the next big thing" reviews from everyone who had some influence in the fantasy fandom. The last newly published author to get such favorable reviews was Joe Abercrombie they year before. However, Joe Abercrombie's works have a narrower audience even among the fantasy fans, being grimdark and all. While Rothfuss could tap into the whole of the fantasy fandom, and then the ball got rolling.

To be honest it's hard to be concrete about why a certain book makes an instant success, otherwise there would've been more Harry Potters out there than we could count. But when things like An Ember In The Ashes, which is an okay book, but not a 9/10 book by any means, gets 1 000 000$ advance, you know that once you tap into the YA-Fantasy market with a solid story, you'd make an impression and some money too. And that's what Rothfuss did most likely.
 

Maark Abbott

Journeyed there and back again
#73
He also transcends my ability to remain awake whilst Kvothey Potter is counting pennies (again).
 

Tanniel

Hired Nicomo Cosca, famed soldier of fortune
#74
In a fantasy setting, you have to mention 13th Warrior where Crichton is concerned. It is based on his book, which itself mixes the story of Beowulf with the journey of Ibn Fadlan.
 

Silvion Night

Sir Readalot
Staff member
#75
And this is especially viable when you can transcend into mainstream YA-fantasy - the one with 80% women demographic.
I didn't know the mainstream YA-fantasy audience consists for 80% out of women. I had expected it to be the other way around. I guess it depends on how YA is defined though (if it includes Twilight, The Maze Runner, the Hunger Games etc then I can understand the 80%).
 

kenubrion

Journeyed there and back again
#76
A complete list of Michael Crichton bibliography would obviously surprise many. He was also a practicing physician and surgeon. Then in his spare time he wrote screenplays. For fun he created solar systems.

That last thing might not be true.
 

Silvion Night

Sir Readalot
Staff member
#77

Davis Ashura

Mixes poisons and sharpens knives with Kylar
#78
A complete list of Michael Crichton bibliography would obviously surprise many. He was also a practicing physician and surgeon. Then in his spare time he wrote screenplays. For fun he created solar systems.

That last thing might not be true.
Crichton graduated from Harvard Medical School, but he only finished a year of residency before selling the Andromeda Strain and becoming a full time writer. As far as I know, he never progressed in his training past that single year and never had a license to practice medicine.
 

kenubrion

Journeyed there and back again
#79
Yeah I made that up too.

John Michael Crichton (/ˈkraɪtən/; October 23, 1942 – November 4, 2008) was an American best-selling author, screenwriter, film director and producer best known for his work in the science fiction, medical fiction and thriller genres. His books have sold over 200 million copies worldwide, and many have been adapted into films. In 1994, Crichton became the only creative artist ever to have works simultaneously charting at No. 1 in U.S. television (ER), film (Jurassic Park), and book sales (Disclosure).[1]

His literary works are usually within the action genre and heavily feature technology. His novels epitomize the techno-thriller genre of literature, often exploring technology and failures of human interaction with it, especially resulting in catastrophes with biotechnology. Many of his future history novels have medical or scientific underpinnings, reflecting his medical training and science background. He wrote, among other works, The Andromeda Strain (1969); Congo (1980); Sphere (1987); Travels (1988); Jurassic Park (1990); Rising Sun (1992); Disclosure (1994); The Lost World (1995); Airframe (1996); Timeline (1999); Prey (2002); State of Fear (2004); Next (2006), the final book published before his death; Pirate Latitudes (2009), an action adventure novel concerning 17th-century piracy in the Caribbean; Micro, an unfinished techno-thriller which was published in November 2011; and Dragon Teeth, a historical novel set during the "Bone Wars", published worldwide in May 2017.[2]

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael_Crichton