In the June 22 issue of The New Yorker, there’s a terrific profile of the romance (and futuristic science fiction police procedurals) novelist Nora Roberts. I knew she was a big deal in the publishing industry, but I had no idea how big. She’s truly a force to be reckoned with.
Unfortunately the article isn’t available online (but here’s an interview with Lauren Collins, who wrote it), but here are a few facts that illustrate her industry oomph:
- She’s written 182 books.
- In a typical year, she writes eight books.
- There are allegedly enough Nora Roberts books in print to fill Giants Stadium 4000 times.
- She estimates that the average book takes her 45 working days to write. She writes six to eight hours a day.
- Twenty-seven Nora Roberts books are sold every minute.
- She wrote three of the top ten best-selling mass-market books of 2008.
- In 2008, she sold 18 million books.
- Forbes estimated that, in 2004, she grossed $60 million, more than John Grisham or Stephen King.
The article also has some unsurprising facts about the romance novel genre. It generated $1.4 billion in sales in 2007, more than any other genre (and more than science fiction and fantasy combined).