J K Rowling (1965- )

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J K Rowling was born on July 31st, 1965 in Chipping Sodbury, Gloucestershire, England. Her given name at birth was Joanne Kathleen. While J K was growing up she moved twice. At one of their homes, close to Bristol and in Winterbourne, she had friends next door whose last name was Potter. J K never forgot the children, or the last name, which she liked very much. When she was nine years old her family moved again to Tutshill. JK Rowling attended a primary (grade) school in Tutshill, and later attended Wyedean Comprehensive. Later, when she graduated from Wyedean Comprehensive, she attended Exeter University. Here she studied French after her parents encouraged her into what they believed would be a wonderful career as a bilingual secretary. After graduation, however, it didn’t take JK Rowling long to realize that she was not meant to be a secretary. She found it increasingly hard to remain attentive during meetings, actually writing story ideas instead of taking notes as she had been instructed. When JK Rowling was 26 years old she moved to Portugal to be an English teacher. It was during this period that she began working on a story about a ‘wizard”. JK Rowling met and married a journalist in Portugal (he was Portuguese), and her daughter Jessica was born in 1993. Shortly after the birth of her daughter, the marriage ended in divorce and JK Rowling, along with her infant daughter, moved to Edinburgh, Scotland so that JK could be near her younger sister, Di. It was during this time that JK Rowling became determined to not only finish her Harry Potter ‘wizard’ novel, but to get it published. Often she would write in restaurants, where she and her daughter could stay warm while she wrote. To support her daughter and herself, Ms. Rowling began working as a French teacher. After several months Arthur A Levine Books/Scholastic Press bought the American rights to the first “Harry Potter”, and Ms. Rowling received enough money to give up teaching and write full time. Ms. Rowling has described this moment as the happiest of her life.


Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince


J K Rowling Official Website