Forbes on the World’s Top-Earning Authors

Forbes on the World’s Top-Earning Authors

Veronica Roth joins Forbes list of highest-earning authors for the first time
Veronica Roth joins Forbes list of highest-earning authors for the first time

Forbes Magazine reported on the World’s Top-Earning Authors this week and as always the list includes several genre writers — and a few new names.

Twenty-six year old Veronica Roth, author of the Divergent series, joins the list for the first time at #7 — ahead of John Grisham, Stephen King, and J.K. Rowling. Once again, James Patterson tops the list, as he has for the last several years, earning $90 million in 2013. He produced an amazing 14 books last year (same as the previous year), most written with an assortment of co-authors; his novels account for one out of every 17 hardcover novels purchased in the United States. His successful series include the Alex Cross and Michael Bennett titles; in addition to adult fiction, he’s also the bestselling living author of young adult and middle grade books.

Next on the list is Dan Brown at $28 million, mostly on the successof  Inferno, the fourth in his Robert Langdon series (The Da Vinci Code and others), which sold more than 1.4 million copies in the U.S. Third and fourth are Nora Roberts and Danielle Steel.

I was pleased to see Diary of a Wimpy Kid author Jeff Kinney on the list at #6; Hunger Games author Suzanne Collins ranks #10, and George R.R. Martin clocks in at #12. The top authors on the list are as follows.

  1. James Patterson – $90 million
  2. Dan Brown – $28 million
  3. Nora Roberts – $23 million
  4. Danielle Steel – $22 million
  5. Janet Evanovich – $20 million
  6. Jeff Kinney – $17 million
  7. Veronica Roth – $17 million
  8. John Grisham – $17 million
  9. Stephen King – $17 million
  10. Suzanne Collins – $16 million
  11. J. K. Rowling – $14 million
  12. George R.R. Martin – $12 million
  13. David Baldacci – $11 million
  14. Rick Riordan – $10 million
  15. E.L. James – $10 million

See the complete list at

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Thomas Parker

Geez, what a depressing list.

James McGlothlin

Patterson? 90 million?

That is a #@!%-load of books.


When does Patterson sleep?

Bill Ward

Patterson sleeps to the tranquil sounds of his ghostwriters clacking away.


has an interesting overview of Stephen King adaptations.

I find it intriguing that 7, 10, and 11 seem to have had more multi-media success than the authors whose main thriller series aim more at adults or lack the paranormal.

1.James Patterson – $90 million
2.Dan Brown – $28 million
3.Nora Roberts – $23 million
4.Danielle Steel – $22 million
5.Janet Evanovich – $20 million
6.Jeff Kinney – $17 million
7.Veronica Roth – $17 million
8.John Grisham – $17 million
9.Stephen King – $17 million
10.Suzanne Collins – $16 million
11.J. K. Rowling – $14 million
12.George R.R. Martin – $12 million
13.David Baldacci – $11 million
14.Rick Riordan – $10 million
15.E.L. James – $10 million

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