DANIELLE STEEL Biography - Writers


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Name: Danielle Fernande Dominique Schuelein-Steel                                 
Born: August 14, 1947                                                             
Danielle Fernande Dominique Schuelein-Steel (born on August 14, 1947 in New York   
City, New York), is best known as Danielle Steel and is one of the best selling   
authors in the United States.                                                     
Best known for her mainstream drama novels, Steel has sold more than 550 million   
copies of her books (as of 2005). Her novels have been on the New York Times       
bestseller list for over 390 consecutive weeks and 22 have been adapted for       
television. Danielle Steel's estimated net worth as of 1997 was $600-$800         
million dollars which has now doubled.                                       
Steel's novels have been translated into 28 languages and can be found in 47     
countries across the globe. The books, often described as "formulaic,"           
tend to involve the characters in a crisis of some sort which threatens their     
relationship. Many of her characters are considered over-the-top, making her     
books seem less realistic. The novels frequently "[explore] the world of the     
rich and famous."                                                                 
Despite a reputation among critics for writing "fluff," Steel's novels often     
delve into less savory aspects of human nature, including incest, suicide,       
divorce, war, and even the Holocaust. As time has progressed, Steel's writing     
has evolved. Her later heroines tend to be stronger and more authoritative, who, 
if they do not receive the level of respect and attention they desire from a man, 
move on to a new relationship. In recent years Steel has also been willing to     
take more risks with her plots. Ransom focuses more on suspense than romance,     
and follows three sets of seemingly unconnected characters as their lives begin   
to intersect. Toxic Bachelors departs from her usual style by telling the         
story through the eyes of the three title characters, men who discover their     
true loves.                                                                       
Steel has been criticized for making her books overly redundant and detailed,     
explicitly telling the story to readers instead of showing it to them. This       
sometimes has the effect of making the readers feel like they are on the outside 
looking in rather than living the story.                                         
To avoid comparisons to her previous novels, Steel does not write sequels.       
Although many of her earliest books were released with initial print runs of 1   
million copies, by 2004 her publisher had decreased the number of books           
initially printed to 650,000.                                                     
Twenty-two of her books have been adapted for television, including two that     
have received Golden Globe nominations. One is "Jewels", the story of the         
survival of a woman and her children in World War II Europe, and the family's     
eventual rebirth as one of the greatest jewelry houses in Europe. In the late     
1990s, Steel refused to sell the film rights to her novels to companies that     
intended to market them for television, preferring to work towards a film         
contract. Columbia Pictures was the first movie studio to offer for one of her   
novels, purchasing the rights to The Ghost in 1998. Steel reversed course in     
2005, reaching an agreement with New Line Home Entertainment to sell the film     
rights to 30 of her novels. New Line is expected to adapt the books as           
television movies or for the direct-to-video market.                             
In 2002, Steel was decorated by the French government as a "Chevalier" of the     
Ordre des Arts et des Lettres, for her contributions to world culture.