'Fifty Shades of Grey' author E.L. JamesKENZO TRIBOUILLARD/AFP/Getty Images

Cha-ching! When it came to making money last year, "Fifty Shades of Grey" writer E.L. James smacked her author competitors around.

James made her debut on Forbes's list of top-earning authors in the no. 1 slot. Thanks to the runaway success of her trilogy of erotic novels, which began as "Twilight" fan fiction, she raked in $95 million last year.

The former TV executive was already the fastest selling author in history, having moved 70 million copies of her "Fifty Shades" books in eight months. The huge sales and rampant pop culture buzz led to an upcoming film adaptation, to be directed by Sam Taylor-Johnson for an August 2014 release. Hey, sex sells!

Behind James were thriller-machine James Patterson, with $91 million, and Suzanne Collins, the writer behind the dystopian young adult trilogy "The Hunger Games," with $55 million. The movie version of her story, starring Jennifer Lawrence, has helped push that series from bestsellers to blockbusters.

[via Forbes]
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