Why Barbara Cartland beats Shakespeare
Well there was me worrying about writing prose and wit more of the level of Enid Blyton than Graham Greene, and what do I find? She's the fifth most translated author ever:
THE INDEX TRANSLATIONUM TOP 50 MOST TRANSLATED AUTHORS
1 Walt Disney Inc US
2 Agatha Christie UK
3 Jules Verne France
4 Vladimir Lenin Russia
5 Enid Blyton UK
6 Barbara Cartland UK
7 William Shakespeare UK
8 Danielle Steel US
9 Hans Christian Andersen Denmark
10 Stephen King US
The Bible comes in thirteenth place. If we discount Walt Disney (given he is not a novelist in the conventional sense, with predominantly retellings of other people's existing stories aimed at children) then that puts my all-time favourite author, Agatha Christie, in top place.
I wonder how many of us will be on that list in fifty years time?