EL James Net Worth, Money and More

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Net Worth 60 Million Dollars


el james

Erika Leonard born on 7th March 1963 In the United Kingdom is better known by her pen name EL James. She is a British author of the bestselling erotic romantic novel trilogy Fifty Shades of Grey, Fifty Shades Darker and Fifty Shades Freed. The novels all three combined have sold over 35 million copies in United States and over 70 million copies worldwide setting the record for the fastest selling paperback of all time. In 2012 she was included in “The World’s 100 Most Influential People” by the Time Magazine. She was further felicitated by many numerous awards as well like the 2012 “Publishing Person of the Year” by Publishers weekly and “National Book Award 2012” for “The Fifty Shades of Grey”.


Early Life & Career

James was born Erika Mitchel to a Chilean mother and a Scottish father (BBC cameraman). She started writing fan fiction under the pen name of “Snowqueens Icedragon”. Her most notable work Twilight Fan fiction later on became Fifty Shades of Grey and was published by Vintage Books. Later on it went on to become a film adaptation as well. James herself is shocked at the awesome response to her trilogy. She actually began writing in January 2009 and since the twilight saga dint look back. Forbes listed her in their highest earning authors’ top list with a sale of 95 million dollars and extra 5 million for the film rights. The series has become both popular and controversial due to its content of explicit sex scenes and BDSM lifestyle.


Personal life

james and niall

Raised in Buckinghamshire, James studied history at University of Kent, before becoming a Studio manager’s assistant at the National Film and Television School in Beaconsfield. She also worked as a television executive and currently resides in west London with her husband Niall Leonard whom she married in 1987. Leonard and James have two teenage sons. Niall Leonard is himself a director and screen writer.



El James by far is the highest earning author according to the Forbes list. It is safe to assume she is earning the standard 7% royalty on every $14 paperback and 25% royalty on every 10$ eBook. In the last month over 4 million paperback were sold and around 1 million eBooks.which gives us around 3 million dollars each in paperback and eBook royalties. That is quiet an amount. She is making about 1 million dollars weekly. Well for such a huge earning people have never noticed her go on a spending sprees and hasn’t bought any expensive collectibles as well. Fifty shades is an upcoming film being directed by Sam Taylor- Wood and screenplay by Kelly Marcel, Patrick Marber and Mark Bomback based on EL James’ best selling novel fifty shades of grey.


Net Worth

London Home

el james house

She currently lives in a 350,000 pounds modest terrace apartment and has set her sights on a 3 million pounds mansion in the heart of London city. That mansion has seven bedrooms and an indoor swimming pool. A 17th century Queen Anne mansion also has a wine stellar, large country style kitchen and a landscaped walled garden complete with summer house. Their new property will not be much far from their current house which they have owned since 1998. But it is a little surprise that James is looking to invest her cash because she had denied interviews that she has no intentions of earning large sums of money, she just loves writing.



In an incident of car crash in which this Porsche was involved and said to have been driven by her brother himself. It has been said that the car is owned by James only. Later her brother was cleared by police but the car was completely destroyed in that accident. The crash actually involved a Nissan as well and its driver lost his life during the accident only. Case was fortunately settled in favor of James’s brother and he escaped the punishment of imprisonment.



Her novels have been surrounded by controversies since their launch especially the first one “Fifty Shades of Grey”. This is the reason I guess that the amount of sex live projected in her subsequent novels of trilogy is low.

Fan Fiction Origin

Fifty Shades of Grey has been criticized due to its origin as a fan fiction based on the Twilight series of novels. And hence some readers were predicting copyright issues.

Depicting BDSM

Fifty Shades of Grey has been subject to criticism due to depiction of BDSM in it.

Censorship and removal of her books

Many public libraries refused to keep her books by claiming that they contained sexual content and is not fit for its readers. These cases were reported in Brazil, Argentina and United States. But due to the popularity and public demands they had to make these copies available to their patrons hence ending the controversy.



“Once you’re in charge of your job, your house, your children, getting the food on the table, doing all of this, all of the time, it’d be nice for someone else to be in charge for a bit maybe.”

“I came up with a story and I wrote it.”
“I really like clever men who challenge you.”




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