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How Much Does Harper Lee Make in Royalties?

American author Harper Lee makes an estimated $3.3 million US Dollars (USD) in royalties each year for her 1960 novel To Kill a Mockingbird, which is the only novel she ever published. This is equivalent to around $9,000 USD each day. To Kill a Mockingbird tells the story of a white Alabama lawyer defending a black man falsely accused of rape during the Great Depression through the point of view of the lawyer’s young daughter. The novel sells between 750,000 to one million copies every year, to high schools in particular, and was also made into a 1962 movie that won three Academy Awards.

More about Harper Lee:

  • Lee wrote To Kill a Mockingbird after receiving a Christmas gift from her friends of enough money to take a year off from working just to write.

  • The last official interview Lee gave to the media was in 1964, as of 2014.

  • Lee won the Pulitzer Prize for fiction in 1961, served on the National Council of the Arts in 1966 at the request of President Lyndon B. Johnson, and was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2007 by President George Bush.

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More Info: smithsonianmag.com

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