Forbes' list of top-earning authors

Forbes have released their annual list of the world's top-earning authors:

1. James Patterson (and his assorted minions) - $94 million
2. Stephen King - $39 million
3. Janet Evanovich - $33 million
4. John Grisham - $26 million
5. Jeff Kinney - $25 million
6. Bill O'Reilly - $24 million
7. Nora Roberts - $23 million
8. Danielle Steele - $23 million
9. Suzanne Collins - $20 million
10. Dean Koontz - $19 million
11. J.K. Rowling - $17 million
12. George R.R. Martin - $15 million
13. Stephanie Meyer - $14 million
14. Ken Follet - $14 million
15. Rick Riordan - $13 million

Hmmm, even though GRRM's entire ASOIAF backlist has remained in the top 20 of the NYT bestseller list for the better part of 2011 and ADWD has been on the bestseller list since the day it was published, GRRM came in at number 12.

Then again, many of these authors have backlists comprised of so many titles that it's not all that surprising. . .

Still, 15 million dollars is quite awesome! =)

11 commentaires:

Morrigan said...

Yay he beat Stephanie Meyer :D

John said...

I guess that means he can afford to take a long holiday now rather than writing up ASOIAF at the break-neck speed he has been going at! Good to see fantasy/spec fiction get a nod though, as the Dark Tower sequence also features in the list...wonder what Tolkien still ranks at?

Ken said...

I wonder if it includes earnings from movies, games etc. I thought J.K.Rowling would have ranked higher.

Anonymous said...

Why is James Patterson so much higher then everyone else?

Anonymous said...

Because Patterson's name is slapped on what seems like a couple of different books a month, each with a different cowriter you've never heard of before who probably does all the work.

Anonymous said...

ya know Pat, this fan-boy obsession with GRRM is a bit disturbing. It's your site but still one would imagine you would try to maintain some form of journalistic decorum. How about the fact that STephen King has an 8 volume fantasy epic called the Dark Tower which gets no love on this site and obviously contributes to his net. JK Rowling wrote the 7 superbestselling Harry potter books which are top notch fantasy for all ages. Rick Riordan ya/childrens fantasy (not up my alley but non less). I actually like that you made mention of Paterson's minions. I find it disturbing that he has farmed out all of his actual writing to others, others whose names are a third of the size when they appear on the book jackets.

Patrick said...

The Dark Tower got some very positive reviews here, so you might want to check them out before sounding off... Can't take credit for the Patterson jab, as I stole the idea from Adam on Westeros!

machinery said...

what does it mean "patterson and his assorted cronies" ?

Adam Whitehead said...

'Patterson and his minions' is a reference to the fact that Patterson isn't a solo author any more but the head of a team. He comes up with basic premises and then lets other writers actually pen the novels, which he then edits. There's nothing illegal or dubious about this, as Patterson is fully up-front about it and talks about it in interviews at some length.

For legal and payment purposes Patterson is treated as a single author which is how he ends up on a list like this when really it's not just him doing all the work.

According to Forbes the list includes money from all sources related to their writing, including movie rights money and boosts in book sales resulting from film/TV adaptations. That's how Meyer and Rowling are still shifting so many books years after they published their previous novels.

machinery said...

i guess the industry is realy an industry...
still, an author who does that can't ever pretend to be a great author.

Anonymous said...

J. K. Rowling's networth is north of $1 Billion. What's the criteria used to evaluate these authors?