Jim [Baen] also once told me, when I was whinging about my books not selling as well as someone else's (a favorite pastime among writers, alas — we are a green-eyed bunch) that my books were "too smart" to be bestsellers. To this day, I don't know if he meant that sincerely, or if it was just a very sly way to get himself off the hook. Like I'm going to argue...?
Isn't that an interesting concept? That if books are too smart or too intellectual, they are simply destined to not be bestsellers.
In a sad way, it makes sense. But it is also somewhat freeing, I guess. If you write smart books and you're beating yourself up because you’re not hitting bestseller lists, perhaps it isn’t you, it’s them…
Here’s a link to the whole interview in case you’re a fellow fan.
I also found it very interesting that she found the promotional end of things to be such a chore and was looking forward to giving up some of that.