The latest rich-list from Forbes shows there's still money in print, with the 12 highest-earning authors in 2016 making a combined total of more than NZ$360 million from their writing.
In eighth equal, Da Vinci Code author Dan Brown, Percy Jackson creator Rick Riordan and the man behind Game of Thrones, George R. R. Martin, made about $13 million.
Horror writer Stephen King sits comfortably at fifth with earnings of approximately $20 million.
J.K. Rowling comes third with more than $26 million in earnings, although she could move up the list after Sunday's book release of the new play about the Boy Wizard, The Cursed Child.
Topping the list is the incredibly prolific action author James Patterson, whose books have sold more than 300 million copies, some of which have inspired blockbuster films.
8. Dan Brown – set to publish young adult version of The Da Vinci Code / $13.2 million
8. Rick Riordan / $13.2 million
8. George R. R. Martin – Game of Thrones / $13.2 million
7. Paula Hawkins – The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo / $13.9 million
7. John Green / $13.9 million
7. Veronica Roth – Divergent Trilogy / $13.9 million
6. E.L. James – Fifty Shades of Grey / $19.5 million
5. Nora Roberts – pens an average of five manuscripts a year / $20.9 million
5. Danielle Steel / $20.9 million
5. Stephen King / $20.9 million
4. John Grisham – Rogue Lawyer / $25 million
3. JK Rowling – Harry Potter / $26.4 million
2. Jeff Kinney – Diary of a Wimpy Kid / $27.1 million
1. James Patterson – Alex Cross / $132.1 million