Our love for scary kiddie stories and R.L. Stine was rekindled after the release of the recent Goosebumpsfilms that starred Jack Black. After all these years, we never thought that R.L. Stine could still be relevant, but that’s really the magic of his writing. The American novelist has his fingers on the pulse of childish horrors, and he’s probably the person to blame for many of our nightmares back then. It’s a testament to his talent as a writer and an explanation of how he’s got a net worth of $200 million today. That’s definitely not a bad haul for a horror writer—let alone anyone at that. Let’s take a closer look at how R.L. Stine achieved this remarkable net worth.
Robert Lawrence Stine has always had the penchant for writing. He was born in 1943 in Columbus, Ohio. By the time he was 10 years old, Stine had already written a few things. He lived and grew up in Ohio and even attended the Ohio State University, where he received his Bachelor of Arts degree in English. If anyone was made for writing, it was clear that Stine was. But interestingly enough, he didn’t always write horror stories. After graduating from college, Stine moved to New York and immediately started a career writing books for children, only that time he was writing funny books, not scary ones. He wrote under the name Jovial Bob Stine.
It wasn’t until the mid 80s when he wrote his first horror book, Blind Date.Stine made decent money as a writer during these early years, but he didn’t just stay in that lane. Soon enough, R.L. Stine found himself writing for shows for Nickelodeon. He wrote for the Eureeka’s Castle series before he started writing for the Fear Street series. During this time, Stine was already in his early 40s, but his best work was still ahead of him. Still, he also made a decent living writing for Nickelodeon, and he surely could’ve just kept on going with that. However, there must have been something that pushed R.L. Stine to keep going and keep on further.
In the early 90s, R.L. Stine would write his first-ever Goosebumps book. During this time, he was already in his 50s. This alone is something worth admiring this novelist for. That first Goosebumpsbook was an immediate success, and it made him a great amount of money and popularity as well. We aren’t quite sure if R.L. Stine intended for the Goosebumps book to be an entire series. But we know that the first book became so famous that it probably warranted an entire series altogether. In fact, R.L. Stine earned roughly $41 million in book sales earnings just in 1997 alone. That’s an incredible sales figure regardless of what industry you might be looking at. It’s no surprise either considering that he’s sold more than 400 million copies of that first Goosebumpsbook worldwide. His total book earnings ten years ago in 2009 are dramatically less but still amazing at roughly $15 million.
It’s just safe to say that R.L. Stine probably didn’t need to write much else after the first few Goosebumpsbook considering how much money he made. But he’s a smart man, and smart men handle their money properly. He continued writing and not just books at that. R.L. Stine also wrote for many popular teen magazines, which all added to his net worth at the end of the day. He’s also expanded to other genres including science fiction. He wrote a few humorous sci-fi books such as Losers in Space and Bozos on Patrol; these were just some of the few books in the Space Cadets series. While he is mostly regarded as the Stephen King of children’s books, R.L. Stine also wrote horror books for adults. These aren’t as popular to the masses, but they’re just as good as his other ones. Some of his adult horror novels include Red Rain and The Sitter. All of these novels, again, added to his net worth and continues to do so.
Of course, the translation of the Goosebumps series into a television series earned him a lot of dollars as well. It was a natural transition for Stine considering that he had always worked for television. Stine also made a ton of money from the recent Goosebumpsfilms, which were both highly successful. The first installment made roughly $158 million worldwide, while the second film made roughly $93 million worldwide. Those are great numbers for children horror/comedy films, but we’re not sure if we’re going to see a third installment given the variance in earnings between the two films. Either way, it’s a success story for R.L. Stine, who wrote his stories decades ago and still continue to make so much money out of them.
R.L. Stine married Jane Wadhorn, and he’s probably retained some money due to his marriage. His wife is the co-founder, writer, and editor of Parachute Press, a private publishing company. This company makes money outside of R.L. Stine’s work, but marriage combines most things—including financial statements. There’s a possibility that some of Stine’s net worth comes from the publishing company’s earnings also.
This novelist is a great example of focusing on one thing and focusing on doing it well. He’s only done one thing his entire life, and that is writing. His net worth is due to his writing. Stine’s one of the lucky ones that found something he loved and made money doing it. In fact, he still makes money from it. R.L. Stine will forever be a cultural icon in recent history, and that is an achievement on its own. $200 million is surely a lot of money. But having your name remembered forever for something you did well is even better.
Written by Allen Lee
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