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James Patterson, author of the book series 'Alex Cross' and Women's Murder Club,' earned $84 million between May 2010 and May 2011, according to Forbes' list.
Cowell left the FOX show in the spring of 2010. His new singing contest series 'The X Factor,' is set to debut on FOX on Sept. 21, 2011 and also features former 'American Idol' judge Paula Abdul.
(Pictured: James Patterson appears in a publicity photo.)
( Photo / James Patterson)