What Makes a Best Selling Writer?

I’ve been studying Michael Connelly’s The Reversal the last week.  I have a paper version of the book, and I’m typing it to see how he is a page turner.  The typing of just the first chapter yield other things, so I will have to look back through to figure out what exactly he did.

One thing I picked up: If a character is interrupted, I don’t need to say, “George interrupted,” because it’s obvious from context.  Always a lot of things to learn.

The Washington Post has a big article on best selling writers today.  It does mention productivity being important (and without putting it down!), but the discussion on the writing side missed the mark a little.  It reminded me on when I was on message boards and writers were periodically trying to figure out why a book became a best seller.  The writers would often come up with a really superficial reason.  Here, they talk about the characters and the story, but skims along that superficial reason.   These writers are masters of their craft–not just story and characters, but grabbing the reader and keeping them in the story.

Why does this book attract readers and another doesn’t?  It’s not just the story and the characters.  It’s how the writer does it.