Hugely successful YouTube star and novelist John Green explains why he's 'only' a millionaire five times over

YouTube Star John GreenYouTube/Crash CourseYouTube Star John Green

“Why is John Green only worth $5 million?” someone asked on Q&A site Quora.

The person pointed out that Green is a best-selling author of books that have been made into successful films, and he’s a YouTube star with his brother (vlogbrothers and other YouTube channels).

And lots of other people wondered the same thing, as this question became incredibly popular on Quora with more than 240,000 views.

So Green himself weighed in. Short answer: He feels like he’s got plenty of money.

Longer answer: He didn’t actually confirm that his net worth was merely $5 million and kind of hinted that it wasn’t.

In fact, it’s likely way higher than that, at least double and probably more. Forbes named him one of the top-selling authors of 2014 and calculated that his book, “The Fault in Our Stars” earned him an estimated $9 million paycheck that year before taxes and fees. He’s had other best sellers, like his first break-out hit “Looking for Alaska” that’s been in print and racking up royalties for a decade.

Plus whatever he earns from YouTube with his brother Hank and their educational video channels Crash Course and Mental Floss. All told, the Green brothers have a following of 10 million people across all their channels.

So, because people were asking, on Saturday, he answered:

Hi, Quora! John Green here. This is currently one of the top search results related to me, so I suppose I should answer directly.

1. When we imagine that people’s net worth is directly correlated with their value as a person or professional, I think we give money too much power.

2. In my admittedly limited experience, the Internet is not particularly good at telling you how much money someone has.

3. My family is incredibly lucky (and privileged) to have financial security. But I’m not sure what money can do beyond providing financial security. Like, I am not in need of a yacht. I feel like owning a yacht would stress me out.

Moral of the story: after you’ve made millions and are financially secure, the number of millions starts to matter less than the fact that you no longer have to worry about money, ever again.

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