British author Erika Leonard James wrote the bestselling "Fifty Shades" trilogy, which consists of "Fifty Shades of Grey," "Fifty Shades Darker" and "Fifty Shades Freed." The erotic novels began as James' foray into "Twilight"-inspired fan fiction in 2009, but the tale of bondage-and-domination sex took on a life of its own. The trilogy "sold more copies than any other author in history -- more than 70 million in the first eight months they were on sale in the U.S.," according to Forbes, which named her one of the world's 100 most influential people of 2012. James is a producer and screenwriter for the raunchy film adaptation of the books.
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