Fifty Shades of Greenbacks

Late this afternoon, Forbes writer Luisa Kroll estimated that Fifty Shades of Grey author E.L. James is on pace to secure a spot on next year’s top earning writers list. The article points out other estimates that claim James is raking in as much as $1.3 million a week.

While the layperson reader sees these kind of figures and assumes James is now cruising in a monstrous yacht in the Mediterranean, the truth could be that she hasn’t seen a whole helluva lot of money yet. Since royalty payments are issued in the spring and fall, it’s possible that James hasn’t been paid for a large number of those book sales yet. Of course, there are reports of movie rights sold, so that’s a check that would have come in.

Whatever the current status of James’ bank account, I’m just intrigued by the notion that a writer could come out of nowhere with a phenomenal hit, sell a shit ton of books, and still be relatively penniless while waiting for this bi-annual royalty checks to start rolling in.

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