Here’s the ELI5 version: Sanderson is the biggest name in fantasy pub right now. If his next bestseller was called Graham Bradley Is A Turd And I Have The Receipts, I would buy it and pimp it on my channel because it would be a fun book.
His readers all over the world love him. He proved this by launching a Kickstarter for 4 unpublished books, about which none of his readers knew a single thing. He set the goal at a modest one million dollars over 31 days. He got ten million dollars on day one.
A pensive bro might start asking himself why he even needs Tor or Delacorte anymore. Sanderson is now, famously, the one who knocks.
Right there is a link to my podcast wherein I briefly review two books about lesser-known American figures. Geronimo was an Apache leader, and Bass Reeves was a marshal in the late 1800s. Incredible reads.
You can find the Radcracker Podcast on Apple, Google, Spotify, and more.
Hello, DreadHeads. The newest Dresden Files novel dropped today, after five years without a full-length adventure in magical Chicago. We’ll get another one in September, so Butcher is rewarding our patience.
I’m about a third of the way through PEACE TALKS and I love returning to familiar ground. That got me thinking about why we enjoy series books as readers, and I have some ideas:
5: Large-scale escapism
Series books that are well-developed tend to give us a huge world where our imaginations can run free. This very real itch is what online RPGs scratch at in the human psyche. Even with their costs and dangers, we prefer them to our own reality, and vacations there are cheap.
Harry Dresden’s apartment, Hogwarts, the Millennium Falcon, these are all great examples. Bonus points if the world has abundant foods that you can recreate. You then get to hold a real piece of this fake place in your hand.
4: The progress of a character
The weak become strong, the ugly turn beautiful, the poor become wealthy…but most important, fools gain wisdom and they learn from their mistakes.
You know. All the stuff that real people never do.
3: The progress of a world
Hunger Games does this one well with regard to the setting as a character. I think in general we are excited by changes in our surroundings and those changes are a lot cheaper to render in a fictional landscape.
This point is connected to the next one, which is…
2: Flipping over stones
Perpendicular to “changing the world” is “exploring the world.” Dresden spends a dozen years in Chicago before he dies and has to navigate the ghost world version beneath it. Then he goes to an island on Lake Michigan, where he learns about monsters from beyond reality. There it’s always something to discover, and with a series you get to see something new all the time.
A point that dovetails nicely into…
1: Delightful anticipation
Don’t you love having something new to look forward to? I do. And while it’s nice to see how a long story comes together in the end, the journey is a long, joyful walk that doesn’t require us to rush.