How Dean Koontz Achieved a Net Worth of $145 Million

Dean Koontz

If you like mysteries, you have most likely heard of author Dean Koontz. He has written dozens upon dozens of books, mostly in the mystery genre. Nearly every one of those has become a best-seller. His books have been translated into numerous languages, making him an international superstar. If you do not regularly read, you might wonder how much money an author can actually earn. The answer to that question obviously depends on how good one is at plying their trade, cooled with most in-demand their books are. In the case of Dean Koontz, he definitely comes out on top on both accounts. He is wildly popular and is continuing to write books. Through it all, he has amassed a net worth in excess of $145 million. Continue reading to learn more about how he got there.

The Bottom Line

It is helpful to know that Dean Koontz is an American author. Born in 1945, he has pretty much made this his entire profession. In addition to writing novels, he is also a film producer, screenwriter, and he was also written his fair share of poems. That alone explains his earning potential, but to get to $145 million means that he must be extra special. Dean Koontz is best known for the suspense thrillers that he has been writing for much of his career. He is so popular because his books can be so different. He does not employ a cookie-cutter approach. Readers eagerly anticipate his next new release because they do not know quite what to expect. He has been known to incorporate elements of hoodoo into his books, combine with a bit of science fiction and a whole lot of mystery. At times, he even uses comedy. He is one of the few authors that has been able to encompass such a wide range of writing styles, and this simply adds to his earning potential. He draws in readers with a variety of interests, broadening the type of audience that he appeals to. Quite a few of his books are set in Orange County, California. To date, he has had 28 different books reach the number one position on the New York Times Bestseller list. There are only a few authors in the history of the list that can claim that feat. Long-time readers might know Dean Koontz by one of this other pen names. He has used David Axton, Leigh Nichols, and Brian Coffey at various points in the past.

Some Accolades

Throughout his career, Dean Koontz has earned quite a few different awards. This actually began when he was in college. This is when he won a fiction writing competition that was held by Atlantic Monthly. He was a senior, That award would give Dean Koontz the confidence that he needed to make a career out of writing. He has never really looked back on that. This is the only thing he has really done since he finished college. That kind of staying power in a profession really adds to a person’s earning potential. Interestingly enough, Dean Koontz does not just depend on American readers to gain his following. His books have actually been published in 38 different languages. That has allowed him to sell more than 450 million total copies of his books thus far in his career. That is quite a lot of money, no matter you look at it.

He actually graduated from Shippensburg State College. Right out of college he would go to work for the Appalachian Poverty Program. It was there that he counseled and tutored a number of children around the region who  are underprivileged. It was at nights and on the weekends that would do his writing during those first few years. It was after leaving the Poverty Program that he would become an English teacher. This was in a small district outside of Harrisburg. He would do that for 18 months. It was then that his wife told him that she would work and support him for at least five years. During that time, he was free to focus all of his attention on writing. That was all the motivation that he needed. Needless to say, that five years has now turned into several decades of a successful writing career. In fact, it wouldn’t even be five years before his wife quite her job to beginning running the business side of Dean’s writing career. It has been quite the partnership since then.

How He Has Gotten To This Point

Dean Koontz is best known for the suspense thrillers that he has been writing for much of his career. He is so popular because his books can be so different. He does not employ a cookie-cutter approach. Readers eagerly anticipate his next new release because they do not know quite what to expect. He has been known to incorporate elements of hoodoo into his books, combine with a bit of science fiction and a whole lot of mystery. At times, he even uses comedy. He is one of the few authors that has been able to encompass such a wide range of writing styles, and this simply adds to his earning potential. He draws in readers with a variety of interests, broadening the type of audience that he appeals to.

Koontz would actually be writing full time for ten years before his books began to sell in the millions, one after the other. Prior to that, he has two million-copy sellers in They Key to Midnight and The Funhouse. Those two, however, were written under pen names. No, we would be known to the world as Dean Koontz. He is currently the sixth highest-paid author in the world. Estimates are that he makes more than $25 million a year, which puts him right up there with John Grisham. He continues to write and earn even more money, so who knows how much his net worth will end up begin before it is all said and done.


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