Nicholas Charles Sparks (born December 31, 1965) is an internationally-bestselling American novelist and screenwriter. He has 16 published novels, with themes that include cancer, death and love. Six have been adapted to film, including Message in a Bottle, A Walk to Remember, The Notebook, Nights in Rodanthe, Dear John and The Last Song. Two more are in various stages of development. The Lucky One is expected to be released as a film in early 2012. “Safe Haven” is expected to begin filming in 2011.
While still in school in 1985 , Sparks had penned his first (never published) novel, The Passing, while home for the summer between freshman and sophomore years at Notre Dame. He wrote another novel in 1989, also unpublished, The Royal Murders.
After college, Sparks sought work with publishers or to attend law school, but was rejected in both attempts. He then spent the next three years trying other careers, including real estate appraisal, waiting tables, selling dental products by phone and starting his own manufacturing business.
In 1990, Sparks co-wrote with Billy Mills Wokini: A Lakota Journey to Happiness and Self-Understanding. The book was published by Feather Publishing, Random House, and Hay House. Sales for this book approximated 50,000 copies in its first year after release.
In 1992, Sparks began selling pharmaceuticals and in 1993 was transferred to Greenville, SC. It was there that he wrote another novel in his spare time, The Notebook. Two years later, he was discovered by literary agent Theresa Park, who picked The Notebook out of her agency’s slush pile, liked it, and offered to represent him. In October 1995, Park secured a $1 million advance for The Notebook from Time Warner Book Group. The novel was published in October 1996 and made the New York Times best-seller list in its first week of release.
With the success of his first novel, he moved to New Bern, NC. After his first publishing success, he wrote several international bestsellers. Six of his novels have been made into films: Message in a Bottle (1999), A Walk to Remember (2002), The Notebook (2004), Nights in Rodanthe (2008), Dear John (2010), and The Last Song (2010).
According to his website, he has also sold the screenplay adaptations of True Believer and At First Sight, though it is uncertain whether either film will be made. His latest screenplay turned novel, The Last Song, has been turned into a film produced by Offspring Entertainment for Touchstone Pictures featuring Miley Cyrus.
Sparks began his 16th novel, Safe Haven, on February 17, 2010, and it was published on September 14, 2010. Film producers asked Sparks on August 4 for rights to release a movie adaptation of this new novel and the deal was closed the next day.
On June 17, 2011 Nicholas Sparks stated on his official website that Warner Bros. had bought the movie rights to his new book The Best of Me, which is coming out October 11, 2011. The production date for the movie has not been verified, although Sparks believes that filming of the movie will start in 2012.
On August 2, 2011, Nicholas Sparks stated via his Twitter page that Safe Haven should begin production some time in October of 2011. He also confirmed that The Lucky One, starring Zac Efron, should be in theaters in either March or April of 2012.