March is Women’s History month and in honor of this I’ve compiled what I think to be the seven bestselling women authors. I recently read an article at “On the Media” that discussed how the most emailed articles today tend to be written by women.
As I began to compile this list I also learned that the number of women with bestselling novels has been increasing. So, for now, here are some of the bestselling women authors. Perhaps you will remember a few from my last list.
1.Barbara Cartland: This English author is estimated to have sold 500 million to 1 billion books. A writer of the romance genre, she is the seventh most translated author in the world. She not only wrote romance novels, but also wrote biographies and explored women’s health issues. Her book sales have earned her a place in the Guinness Book of World Records. Check out some of her books: Castle of Love, Love Became Theirs.
2.Enid Blyton: As I wrote this list the question came up as to whether I should include authors of children’s books or not. I find some of the best writers today are writing children’s and young adult stories, which is why I think Blyton deserves the spot of number two. A British writer for children, Blyton is the fifth most translated author in the world. It is estimated that she has sold between 300 and 500 million books. These books include the Young Adventurers and the Noddy series.
3.Danielle Steel: This writer made the list for my bestselling romance novels, so it’s no surprise she is on this list as well. This writer has been estimated to have sold over 500 million books. She has spent over 390 consecutive weeks on the NY Times bestsellers list. Just a few of her famous books are The Promise, Miracle, Summer’s End.
4. J.K. Rowling: I have to admit that this happens to be my favorite author on the list. Rowling is the author of the Harry Potter Series that sucked millions of adults and children into the world of wizardry. The books have been estimated to have sold over 400 million copies with the last four of the trilogy becoming some of the fastest selling books. I will also admit that I was on the bookstore line at midnight for several of those releases. Rowling has had a tremendous impact on readers all over the world. If I hadn’t picked up my copy of the Sorcerer’s Stone at 10, I probably wouldn’t be the avid reader I try to be today. Harry Potter has become more than just books; it has expanded into movies, merchandise, and even a theme park at Disney, which I recommend to anyone who is an avid fan.
5. Jackie Collins: Another British romance novelist, Collins has written 27 books, all of which have become bestsellers. Her most recent is Poor Little Bitch Girl, which was released in 2010. She has been estimated to have sold between 200-400 millions books.
6. Corin Tellado: This Spanish author wrote a mix of romance and fiction novels. She has published more than 4,000 books, a number that I cannot even fathom. It is estimated that she has sold more than 400 million books. Another Guinness World Record holder, in 1994 Tellado appeared in their lists for having written the most books in Spanish.
7. Janet Dailey and Nora Roberts: These two seem to be very close in sales, both being estimated to have sold more than 300 million books. Roberts, who also made my bestselling romance novels list, has written 195 books, while Dailey has written around 111. Both have been translated into many languages. Dailey has been accused of plagiarizing Roberts’ work, a case that has been settled according to several articles. The numbers prove that both continue to have a huge fan base. If you’re a Dailey fan perhaps check out The Americana Series, and for Roberts fans perhaps check out her new novel Chasing Fire, which comes out in April.
That's my list. It seems romance writers overtook the list, but here are a few honorable mentions that were close to making the list: Anne Rice, the writer of a host of vampire novels, including Interview with A Vampire, which was turned into a popular film starring Tom Cruise and Brad Pitt. Another woman who came close to making the list is Beatrix Potter, the writer of The Tale of Peter Rabbit. It is estimated that she has sold more than 100 million books.
As with my last list, it was hard to factor in classic novels since there are no certain numbers, but I’m sure Jane Austen, the Bronte sisters, and countless others would be on this list if there were.
I also feel the need to mention that some of my favorite women writers didn’t seem get to make this list due to sales. Despite their “numbers” here are just a few authors that I personally believe have had a big impact on writers around the world: Joan Didion (Slouching Towards Bethlehem), Muriel Rukeyser (The Book of the Dead), Toni Morrison (The Bluest Eye), Sylvia Plath (The Bell Jar), Flannery O’Connor (Wise Blood) and so many others.
Who is your favorite female writer? I’d love to hear your thoughts. What books will you be enjoying this month?