Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the last two decades (literally), you know who and what Harry Potter is. But how much do you know about the woman who wrote the Boy Who Lived into being? If you look at J.K. Rowling now, you’d see a rich and successful woman, but that wasn’t always the case. Here are 25 Fantastic Facts About JK Rowling Every Harry Potter Fan Should Know.
J.K. Rowling was fired while working as a secretary for Amnesty International - because she was daydreaming, reading fantasy, and writing stories on her work computer instead of working.
J.K. Rowling's real name, by the way, is Joanne Rowling. Her publisher asked that she not publish under an obviously female name because it might not appeal to the target audience, which, at the time, was young boys. Just kidding Bloomsbury, Harry Potter's target audience is everyone, ever. The K is for her grandmother, Kathleen.
Jo (as many affectionately call her, and we here at List 25 are so very affectionate towards Joanne Rowling) had published a total of 17 books - including three under a pen name, Robert Galbraith. She wanted to start fresh in a new genre without her famous name following her. People figured her out, but she still writes under the pen name to keep a distinction from her other, more wizardly, works. To date, Harry Potter is not only her most popular work, but the best selling series in history, having sold more than 450 MILLION copies. That's more than the population of the United States, kids.
Before Harry Potter was published, Jo went through some bouts of depression, and she says that this was the inspiration for the Dementors in Harry Potter. She describes them as the “absence of being able to envisage that you will ever be cheerful again. The absence of hope. That very deadened feeling, which is so very different from feeling sad."
She's been quite poor. After her first marriage ended unpleasantly, Jo found herself with a young daughter just trying to scrape by. She sometimes even skipped meals to make sure her baby ate.
Photo Credits: Feature Image: Daniel Ogren, J. K. Rowling 2010, CC BY 2.0, 25. wikimedia commons (public domain), 24. Matthew Bloomfield via flickr, CC BY-SA 2.0, 23. Daniel Ogren, J. K. Rowling 2010, CC BY 2.0, 22. iKobe! via flickr, CC BY-SA 2.0, 21. pexels (public domain), 20. wearelumos.org (logo under fair use for illustrative purposes only), 19. pixabay (public domain), 18. Barry Solow via flickr, CC BY-SA 2.0, 17. pexels (public domain), 16. www.her.ie, (fair use, illustrative use only, no free images available), 15. Mo HH92 at English Wikipedia, Harry Potter british books, CC BY-SA 3.0, 14-13. pexels (public domain), 12. Robert Prummel, Ster Orde van het Britse Rijk, CC BY-SA 2.5, 11. max pixel (public domain), 10. pexels (public domain), 9. Wikimedia commons (public domain), 8. pixabay (public domain), 7. pexels (public domain), 6. Gauravjuvekar, The Simpsons Logo 2009 vector, CC BY-SA 3.0, 5. pexels (public domain), 4. pixabay (public domain), 3. Kim Traynor, Edinburgh Medical School building, Teviot Place, CC BY-SA 3.0, 2. Mike Mozart via flickr, CC BY 2.0, 1. pexels (public domain)