I've been giving some thought recently to what makes a successful fantasy novel. I've pondered works like Harry Potter and Eragon, books that would surely count as "successful" by anyone's standards. What made them so successful?
I think it is clear, especially from these two examples, that to achieve loads of sales (especially in a short time), one has to understand the genre of fantasy. Both of these examples are very conscious of their placement with in a specific genre, and they pay due respect to the typical genre markers.
While that may begin to sound formulaic to some, you can't deny that it is a formula for success. Any argument against it seems to be butting one's head against the wall. These books and movies, like it or not, sell.
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