Monday, August 23, 2010

Show me the money!

by Brittany Geragotelis

Ever since I knew I wanted to write books, I was also quite aware that I'd most likely need a day job to pay the bills. And let's face it, even now as a magazine editor, I sometimes feel like I need another day job to support my current day job...but that's a whole other story. The point is, I was never under the (misguided) impression that writing books was going to make me a millionaire. A little bit famous, maybe, but not rich.

In fact, it wasn't until J.K. Rowling blew up the literary universe with her little novel about a teen wizard that I actually realized that authors could be rich. And we're not just talking not having to have a day job rich. I'm talking I-could-buy-a-new-house-every-year-for-the-rest-of-my-life-and-I'd-still-have-money-left-over-to-go-to-Disney-World-if-I-wanted-to RICH. Does it make me sort of sexist that I especially love that the world's first billionaire author was a woman? It does? Well, what can I say—the girl is freaking awesome!

Another reason to love J.K.? Well, according to Forbes List of the Ten Highest Paid Authors the British Book Maven managed to make $10 million dollars this past year for not even churning out a new book! Now THAT'S talent.

Wonder how other authors stacked up to the competition? Take a look at the rest of the list:

1. James Patterson ($70m)

2. Stephenie Meyer ($40m)

3. Stephen King ($34m)

4. Danielle Steel ($32m)

5. Ken Follett ($20m)

6. Dean Koontz ($18m)

7. Janet Evanovich ($16m)

8. John Grisham ($15m)

9. Nicholas Sparks ($14m)

10. JK Rowling ($10m)

Still think authors can't hit the big payday?