$84m James Patterson tops best-paid authors list
Author James Patterson earned a thrilling $84m last year, topping Forbes magazine's annual look at the world's best-paid authors.
It is the second year running the creator of Alex Cross finished at the top of the list, after seeing his sales grow by 20 per cent in the year to April 2011.
The increase is attributed to a $150m, 17-book deal Patterson signed with publisher Hachette in 2009.
The deal has seen the author publish 10 books this year, added to the "astonishing" 20 of his titles which have made it on to year-end best-seller lists. He has also seen strong growth in his ebook sales – Amazon announced last October that he had sold 1,005,803 Kindle books.
Patterson earned more than twice as much as the second-placed author, Danielle Steel, whose romance novels brought her a comparatively small $35m over the same period.
Horror author Stephen King made $28m, mystery writer Janet Evanovich $22m and Twilight novelist Stephenie Meyer came in fifth with earnings of $21m, almost half of what she made the previous year. She heads a pack of young adult writers – Percy Jackson writer Rick Riordan ($21m), Wimpy Kid creator Jeff Kinney ($17m) and Hunger Games author Suzanne Collins ($10m) – who are all appearing on the list for the first time. The line-up is based on official sales figures from Nielsen BookScan, year-end totals from publishers and industry input.
JK Rowling's earnings halved over the period to $5m, but Forbes predicts the Harry Potter author "is about to make mad Gringotts" thanks to the launch of Pottermore, which will see ebook versions of her wizardry series go on sale for the first time this autumn. James Patterson's earnings last year were estimated by Forbes at $70m. However, the previous occasion when Forbes published the list, in 2008, he was left trailing by Rowling, who had brought in some $300m that year.
TV Jungle security stepped up after murder and 'suspicious death' near to camp
Jeff Fletcher found fame in 1990s
'At times I thought he was me'film
Review: One Direction, Fourmusic
Review: The World of Ice and Firebooks
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Sarah Vine criticises lesbian mother Jack Monroe: 'If she was unsure about her sexuality, she should have taken greater precautions'
- 2 Black Friday 2014: Opening times for Asda, John Lewis, PC World, GAME and Argos
- 3 To help fuel their propaganda machine against the poor, our government has now decided to redefine the word 'welfare'
- 4 Jeremy Hunt: 'I took my children to A&E because I didn't want to wait for GP appointment'
- 5 Girl, 7, gets Tesco to remove 'stupid' sign suggesting superheroes are 'for boys'
Black Mirror Christmas special: Jon Hamm episode will see people 'blocked' in real life, not just on Facebook
Zoella: YouTube sensation Zoe Sugg's debut novel set to become overnight bestseller
True Detective series 2: Rachel McAdams cast in female lead as 'no-nonsense' detective
Nightclubbing with Richard Young: The story behind his latest book of celebrity photographs
Naked free runner captured in breathtaking photographs above London's streets
Rochester by-election: Ukip gains second MP as Tory defector Mark Reckless holds seat
'Beast of Bolsover' Dennis Skinner takes Ukip MP Mark Reckless to task moments after he is sworn in
Rochester by-election: Labour MP Emily Thornberry resigns after posting white van and England flags tweet
The young are the new poor: Sharp increase in number of under-25s living in poverty, while over-65s are better off than ever
Tamir Rice: 12-year-old boy playing with fake gun dies after being shot by Ohio police
Revealed: How the world gets rich – from privatising British public services