It did not affect Stephen King's bottom line at all, but it took me a long time to get around to reading one of his books, mainly because I never really enjoyed horror movies, especially the slasher/splatter variety, which, for some reason, is the kind of story I thought King told. One reason King's finances should remain secure despite whatever happens to publishers is the fact that large numbers of readers who ignored him for years eventually discover him and pick up a few of his books. I know I'll read at least three more eventually: Carrie, The Stand, and The Gunslinger.
You probably don't give a damn why I got off my high horse and gave him a try, so I'll just direct you to my review of King's On Writing if you're at all curious. 'Salem's Lot is King's second book. I was surprised that it took a relatively long time for the horror action to start. Maybe that is directly due to the difference between readers of commercial fiction of the 1970s, and their attention spans, and readers today? The slow start was well written. King can set the scene. His descriptions of nature, the town, and people's personalities are great, even beautiful. The horror here was not slasher/splatter at all. I loved the way it grew, yet while it grew, brought on by vampires, the ordinariness of the everyday still took place. The sun rose and characters observed nature's beauty and were not even sure, in a way, if the night's horrors could have been real. I don't know if that is trademark King, but I am interested in finding out.