Aspiring authors dream of success in one genre. However, there are at least a handful who have found success across genres. Their books are popular and appeal beyond their original audiences.
As a writer, I can only dream of the success that some of my favorite authors have achieved. Stephen King, Ann Rice, and Margaret Atwood are highly successful authors across various genres. Other authors have achieved similar success across many genres, with some of them writing under pen names.
1. J. K. Rowling, also writing as Robert Galbraith
J. K. Rowling first came into prominence after the worldwide success of her young adult fantasy genre series, Harry Potter. Moviemakers adapted her books for the screen, leading to great financial and critical success for the author. The tales of the boy wizard ignited the love of reading in children the world over. Lengthy queues outside bookstores preceded each release of a book in this series. Renewed interest in the fantasy genre sparked success for other authors in the genre, such as Stephenie Meyer.
Using the pseudonym Robert Galbraith, the author then wrote the Strike series. The first book was published in 2013 to critical acclaim. As a result, she has become a best-selling author in the crime fiction genre. She is said to have used the pseudonym because she wanted readers to judge the books’ success on its own merits. Cormoran Strike, the protagonist, is a war veteran and an amputee who becomes a private investigator. Writers quickly adapted the Strike series for TV. The author’s book adaptations for screen and TV have all achieved outstanding success.
2. Nora Roberts, also writing as J.D. Robb
Nora Roberts is a highly successful and celebrated author in the romance genre with over 200 books and various romance series to her name. She has been writing for almost 40 years, with her books focusing on romantic relationships against a background of complicated family issues. The author has also attained success in writing from the male perspective.
Using the pseudonym J.D. Robb, the author published her first book in the In Death series in 1995. She based the series in the genre of futuristic crime thriller and attained outstanding success. The protagonist in this series is Eve Dallas, a lieutenant in the New York Police and Security Department (NYPSD). She is a child of abuse and neglect who rises to prominence in the police department. She is a crime solver, together with her husband Roarke and her partner Delia Peabody.
3. Isabel Allende
Isabel Allende is an award-winning author most famous for her books set in the genre of magical realism. Her debut novel, House of Spirits, was published in 1982 and garnered her entry into literary royalty. The book details the lives of four generations of the Trueba family. The author originally wrote the book in Spanish. Allende has achieved phenomenal success in this genre.
Apart from further books based on magical realism, the author has also written across various genres. She delved into the crime thriller genre, with significant success, with the detective story book Ripper in 2014. She has also published memoirs and non-fiction books, such as Paula in 1994. It is claimed in the literary circles that she is the most widely read Spanish language author in the world.
Many authors can only wish for spectacular success. A few authors have been wildly successful across many genres for many years. Do you know of any other authors who have achieved such success?