J.K. Rowling Poster


Jump to: Overview (4)  | Mini Bio (1)  | Family (4)  | Trivia (64)  | Personal Quotes (32)

Overview (4)

Born in Yate, Gloucestershire, England, UK
Birth NameJoanne Rowling
Nicknames Jo
Height 5' 5" (1.65 m)

Mini Bio (1)

Joanne Rowling was born in Yate, near Bristol, a few miles south of a town called Dursley ("Harry Potter"'s Muggle-family). Her father Peter Rowling was an engineer for Rolls Royce in Bristol at this time. Her mother, Anne, was half-French and half-Scottish. They met on a train as it left King's Cross Station in London. Her sister Diana is about 2 years younger than Joanne. In 1971, Peter Rowling moved his family to the nearby village of Winterbourne (still in the Bristol vicinity). During the family's residence in Winterbourne, Jo and Di Rowling were friends with neighborhood children, Ian and Vikki Potter. In 1974, the Rowling family moved yet again, this time to Tutshill, near the Welsh border-town of Chepstow in the Forest of Dean and across the Severn River from the greater Bristol area. Rowling admits to having been a bit of a daydreamer as a child and began writing stories at the age of six. After leaving Exeter University, where she read French and Classics, she started work as a teacher but daydreamed about becoming a writer. One day, stuck on a delayed train for four hours between Manchester and London, she dreamed up a boy called "Harry Potter". That was in 1990. It took her six years to write the book. In the meantime, she went to teach in Portugal, married a Portuguese television journalist, had her daughter, Jessica, divorced her husband and returned to Britain when Jessica was just three months old. She went to live in Edinburgh to be near her sister, Di. Her sudden penury made her realize that it was "back-against-the-wall time" and she decided to finish her "Harry Potter" book. She sent the manuscript to two agents and one publisher, looking up likely prospects in the library. One of these agents that she picked at random based on the fact that she liked his name, Christopher Little, was immediately captivated by the manuscript and signed her on as his client within three days. During the 1995-1996 time-frame, while hoping to get the manuscript for "Harry Potter & The Philosopher's Stone" published, Rowling worked as a French teacher in Edinburgh. Several publishers turned down the manuscript before Bloomsbury agreed to purchase it in 1996.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: van_whistler@hotmail.co.uk

Family (4)

Spouse Neil Murray (26 December 2001 - present)  (2 children)
Jorge Arantes (16 October 1992 - 30 November 1993)  (divorced)  (1 child)
Children Jessica Isabel Rowling-Arantes
David Gordon Rowling-Murray
Mackenzie Jean Rowling-Murray
Parents Peter Rowling
Anne Rowling
Relatives Diana Rowling (sibling)

Trivia (64)

Graduated from Exeter University.
Is a former English teacher.
She writes most of her novels in longhand, rather than with a computer.
Her novel, "Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire", was the top-selling novel of 2000, with 7 million hardcovers sold.
When the first "Harry Potter" novel was published, the publisher asked her to use initials rather than her first name, because boys would be biased against a book written by a woman. Since she only had one given name, they then asked her to make up another initial; she took "K." from her favorite grandmother, Kathleen.
She was awarded the OBE (Officer of the Order of the British Empire) in the 2000 Queen's Birthday Honours List for her services to literature and received it from one of her fans, King Charles III, the Prince of Wales.
In 2002, she was sued for plagiarism in the District Court of the Southern District of New York by Pennsylvania-based author Nancy Stouffer, who claimed that J.K. Rowling had lifted ideas from her novel "The Legend of Rah and Muggles" (1984), which includes a character called Larry Potter. However, the case against J.K. Rowling was dismissed on September 19, 2002, when the judged ruled that Ms. Stouffer had lied to the court and doctored evidence to support her claims.
Is one of only two contemporary authors to have a novel spend more than a year on both the New York Times hardcover and paperback best-seller lists, the other author being Nicholas Sparks.
As of November 2002, the year and month of the second "Harry Potter" movie (Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (2002)) being released, her franchise of books have currently sold over 175,000,000 copies and printed in over 200 languages to become the biggest and fastest selling novels ever.
On April 3, 2003, she and Time Warner successfully sued Dutch publishing company Byblos in the Amsterdam High Court. This prevented Byblos from publishing Russian author Dmitry Yemets' novel "The Magic Double Bass", which features girl wizard Tanya Grotter. It was deemed to plagiarize Rowling's novel "Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone" and to infringe upon her copyright.
The fifth novel in the Harry Potter series, entitled "Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix", was published on June 21, 2003. It was approximately 896 pages long, containing 38 chapters and over 255,000 words, making it her longest "Harry Potter" novel yet. The first U.S. printing was 8.5 million copies, an American publishing record.
In 2003, unauthorized Chinese-language "sequels" to the "Harry Potter" series appeared for sale in the People's Republic of China. These poorly-written novels, by Chinese ghost writers, contain characters from the works of other authors, including Gandalf from J.R.R. Tolkien's "Lord of the Rings" and the title character from L. Frank Baum's "The Wizard of Oz". Rowling's lawyers successfully took legal action against the publishers, who were forced to pay damages.
Is a huge fan of the rock band The Smiths, and in 2003, she appeared on the Channel Four documentary The Importance of Being Morrissey (2002).
Is a huge fan of Monty Python and claims to put some of their humor into her novels. Two apparent references to the "Monty Python" sketch "Crunchy Frog" can be found in her "Harry Potter" novels: two of the sweets are a chocolate frog, and a cockroach cluster. "Monty Python" member John Cleese appears in the movies.
One of her favorite movies is The Fabulous Baker Boys (1989), which was written and directed by "Harry Potter" screenwriter Steve Kloves.
On July 7, 2004, she received an honorary degree from Edinburgh University, in recognition of the Potter books and her outstanding contribution to children's literature.
Character names in her novels are often clues to their identities or secrets. For example, Professor Remus Lupin is a werewolf. According to myth, Romulus and Remus were the founders of Rome and were raised by wolves. His last name, Lupin, is derived from the Latin lupus, for wolf, and the English adjective lupine, meaning wolf-like. Lupin was converted into a werewolf by Fenrir Greyback, whose name is taken from Fenrir, the monstrous wolf son of Loki in Norse mythology. (His alias, Fenrisulfr, was the basis for Fenris Ulf, the American name for Maugrim in C.S. Lewis's "Chronciles of Narnia".) Sirius Black, who turns into a black dog, is named for the star Sirius, which can be found in the constellation Canis Major - the big dog.
Whilst at Exeter University she had little money so, for friends' birthdays, she wrote them personal little stories.
After spending six years writing the first installment of her "Harry Potter" novels, Rowling was rejected by nine publishers before London's Bloomsbury Publishing signed her on.
The day she signed her contract for the first "Harry Potter" novel, the publishing representative told her she would not make any money selling children's books.
Originally wrote the "Harry Potter" novels to pay off her gas bills while living in a tiny flat with her baby daughter.
Although she incorporates characteristics of people she knows into "Harry Potter" characters, she says that the character Gilderoy Lockhart is the only character she purposely based on someone she knew. She would not say who she based the character on, only that it was not her ex-husband, and that whoever it was is probably so ignorant and so narcissistic, that he is probably claiming either to be the basis for Albus Dumbledore, or the real author of the "Harry Potter" novels.
Claims her first audience for the "Harry Potter" novels was her daughter, to whom she would read parts of the story that she wrote as a bedtime story.
Owns two properties in the Perthshire and Edinburgh areas of Scotland. In 2003, she hired a former SAS officer as her bodyguard to patrol her Perth home and protect her family.
Was almost barred from boarding a plane from the United States to the United Kingdom when airport security personnel demanded that her manuscript for her final book be screened or placed in her checked luggage. Rowling refused to give up the manuscript, which was bound with rubber bands.
On December 21, 2006, she announced that the last "Harry Potter" novel will be titled "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows".
Finished writing the final novel in the fantasy franchise three weeks ago - and marked the occasion by leaving graffiti in a Scottish hotel. Eagle-eyed guests at the five-star Balmoral Hotel spotted a line from the best-selling author scrawled in black pen on the back of a marble bust in a room Rowling occupied. She wrote, "J.K. Rowling finished writing Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows in this room (652) on January 11, 2007.".
Based Hermione on herself.
Is the first author billionaire, according to Forbes magazine (2006).
Was #2 on the 'Celebrity Forbes List: Who Made Bank?' of 2006, making her the second richest woman behind Oprah Winfrey.
Forbes magazine estimated her earnings for the year to be $32 million (2007).
Her hero is Robert F. Kennedy. Like her hero, she currently resides in a castle.
Ranked #14 in the 2008 Telegraph's list "the 100 most powerful people in British culture".
Ranked #9 in the 2008 Forbes The Celebrity 100 list.
In the special double issue of Time magazine (December 31, 2007), she was a runner-up at #3 as "Person of the Year" after political leaders Vladimir Putin #1 and Al Gore #2.
To date (Summer 2011), she's the best-selling author in the history of literature. She's also the first author to become a billionaire from writing novels.
It should not be surprising that Stephen King is one of her biggest fans. Not only are they both best-selling authors of supernatural stories, they were also both schoolteachers before becoming successful writers.
The 2009 Sunday Times List estimated her net worth at $817 million.
Her Harry Potter novels have appealed to both children and adults. To help attract both audiences, her British hardcover publisher actually releases each of the novels with two different dust jackets. One features a realistic picture or photograph of an element of the story, designed to appeal to adults. The other features a comic-book like illustration of a scene from the story, designed to appeal to children.
Stephen King reviewed most of her novels for the New York Times Review of Books.
(November 11, 2010) During the course of a brief interview in London's West End just prior to the premiere of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 (2010), she revealed that, of all the movie adaptations of her novels, this was her all-time and personal favorite.
Director David Yates and writer Steve Kloves have both worked on adaptations of her Harry Potter novels; working together on Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (2009), Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 (2010), and Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 (2011). Their collaboration has been so fruitful that their next project together is The Stand (2020). This will be based on the novel by Stephen King, who is one of Rowling's biggest American fans.
With earnings of £560m, Rowling ranked #148 of the 1,000 richest people in the UK's The Sunday Times "Rich List" annual magazine supplement (2012).
Mother Anne died of multiple sclerosis before ever having had the opportunity to enjoy the monumental success of daughter Joanne's Harry Potter novels and movies. In honor of her memory and the circumstances of her death, Joanne contributed £10m to the "Anne Rowling Regenerative Neurology Clinic" at Edinburgh University, Scotland.
Severus Snape is believed to have been based on John Lawrence Nettleship, a Chemistry teacher at Wyedean School in Gloucestershire. Rowling and her mother were both students of his.
Gave birth to her first child at age 27, a daughter Jessica Isabel Rowling-Arantes on July 27, 1993. Child's father is her first husband, Jorge Arantes.
Gave birth to her second child at age 37, a son David Gordon Rowling-Murray on March 24, 2003. Child's father is her second husband, Neil Murray.
Gave birth to her third child at age 39, a daughter Mackenzie Jean Rowling-Murray on January 23, 2005. Child's father is her second husband, Neil Murray.
She secretly published a crime novel, "The Cuckoo's Calling", under the pseudonym of "first-time author" Robert Galbraith, so it would be given unbiased reviews that were independent of her reputation as author of the Harry Potter novels and "The Casual Vacancy".
Announced that she is considering writing another "Harry Potter" novel. [October 2010]
Was inspired to create the character of Hagrid after overhearing a muscular biker worry that the petunias he cared for were not doing very well.
Based the character Gilderoy Lockhart on someone she knew and admits that she actually had to tone down his personality to make it more believable.
Rowling co-founded LUMOS, the Children's High Level Group (CHLG) charity foundation with Baroness Emma Nicholson MEP (2005).
The film Young Sherlock Holmes (1985) has many similarities to Rowling's Harry Potter series; the teenage Watson resembles Harry Potter; school experiments; Holmes has a rivalry with another student, Dudley very much like Harry's with Draco Malfoy; Dudley and Malfoy both come from rich parents; cavernous libraries, sweets; train stations; Holmes's novelization uses the word potty/Potter; students being injured and needing to see the school nurse; teachers and students eating in the Great Hall; Holmes and Watson solving mysteries while at school and Harry, Ron and Hermione doing the same at Hogwarts; staircases; Harry/Holmes and Watson creeping through a school library at night; both Watson and Hagrid say "sorry about that"; the end of school term; the threat of expulsion; no family for Harry to return to, even at Christmas; Harry has a scar on his forehead while Holmes has one on his cheek; seemingly innocent teaching staff exposed as the opposite; head boys, etc.
Casting an actor to play Harry Potter was the biggest challenge; they saw 5000 auditions and none of them felt right. Director Chris Columbus saw Daniel Radcliffe in David Copperfield (1999) and showed it to the casting director and said Radcliffe was the one and that he was amazing. But she said they wouldn't get him because his parents want him to focus on his schoolwork and not acting, as well as all the attention he'd get. So they interviewed Harry Potter's of different nationalities all over the world and still hadn't found him. She got frustrated with Columbus because he had his heart set on Radcliffe. By sheer coincidence, the producer and screenwriter of Philisopher's Stone went the theatre and in the front row was Radcliffe with his father, so they talked and slowly persuaded him to cast Radcliffe.
Her novel "Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone" is known as "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone" in the United States.
When Chris Columbus scripted Young Sherlock Holmes (1985), Watson believed Holmes obsessed over a case, even at Christmas because unlike other boys his age, he had no family to go home to, like Harry Potter and Kevin McCallister and Columbus has ties to the Harry Potter and Home Alone franchises.
She was awarded the CH (Member of the Order of the Companion of Honour) in the 2017 Queen's Birthday Honours List for her services to Literature and Philanthropy in Edinburgh, Scotland.
Although she usually appears to be blonde nowadays, photos of her as a young girl in Who Do You Think You Are?: J.K. Rowling (2015) show that she was brunette when younger.
Times: Most Powerful And Inspirational Women Of The Past Century #2 1998.
Surname is pronounced "Rolling", as she states it's pronounced to rhyme with "Bowling" and not with "Howling".
Became fluent in French after having earned a degree in the language from the University of Exeter in her youth, spent a year studying in Paris as part of her time in college and worked in London as a researcher and bilingual secretary.
Born at 9:10 PM (GDT).
Claimed in an interview that writing the last Harry Potter book differently would have resulted in the need for two more books.

Personal Quotes (32)

[Asked by an interviewer about the next "Harry Potter" novel] Well, it will be a papery object with pages inside.
[on her daughter, Jessica] Kids at her school will sidle up to me and say, "Does Jessica know what happens in book 4? Does Jessica know the title of book 4?" And I keep saying, "No! There is no point kidnapping her, taking her around back of the bike shed, and torturing her for information."
Bigotry is probably the thing I detest most. Anything's possible if you've got enough nerve.
I had an American journalist say to me, "Is it true you wrote the whole of the first novel on napkins?" I was tempted to say, "On teabags, I used to save them."
I gave my hero a talent I'd love to have. Who wouldn't want to fly?
The spells are made up. I have met people who assure me, very seriously, that they are trying to do them, and I can assure them, just as seriously, that they don't work.
[When asked what the title would be for book six] It will be called 'Harry Potter and...' something. Catchy, don't you think? And I think I'll follow the same model for seven.
People ask me if there are going to be stories of Harry Potter as an adult. Frankly, if I wanted to, I could keep writing stories until Harry is a senior citizen, but I don't know how many people would actually want to read about a 65 year old Harry still at Hogwarts playing bingo with Ron and Hermione.
[on being held up at an airport for refusing to be parted from the manuscript of her seventh "Harry Potter" novel] The heightened security restrictions on the airlines made the journey back from New York interesting, as I refused to be parted from the manuscript of book seven. A large part of it is handwritten and there was no copy of anything I had done while in the U.S. They let me take it on thankfully, bound up in elastic bands. I don't know what I would have done if they hadn't -- sailed home probably.
I would like to be remembered as someone who did the best she could with the talent she had.
Why do I talk about the benefits of failure? Simply because failure meant a stripping away of the inessential. I stopped pretending to myself that I was anything other than what I was, and began to direct all my energy into finishing the only work that mattered to me. I was set free, because my greatest fear had been realized, and I was still alive, and I still had a daughter whom I adored, and I had an old typewriter and a big idea. And so Rock bottom became a solid foundation on which I rebuilt my life. It is impossible to live without failing at something, unless you've lived so cautiously, that you might as well not have lived at all.
[At the premiere at the last Harry Potter movie (2011)] Hogwarts will always be there to welcome you home.
[on making a $1.68-million donation for the campaign against the Scottish Independence movement] The more I listen to the 'yes' campaign, the more I worry about its minimization and even denial of risks. This separation will not be quick and clean. It will take microsurgery to disentangle three centuries of close interdependence. I just hope with all my heart that we never have cause to look back and feel we made a historically bad mistake.
Rock bottom became the solid foundation upon which I rebuilt my life.
Love as powerful as your mother's for you leaves its mark. To have been loved so deeply will give us some protection forever.
We don't need magic to transform our world. We carry all the power we need inside ourselves already!
[on C.S. Lewis' "The Chronicles of Narnia" fantasy novels] There comes a point where Susan, who was the older girl, is lost to Narnia because she becomes interested in lipstick. She's become irreligious basically because she found sex. I have a big problem with that.
[written on Twitter] Just unfollowed a man whom I thought was smart and funny, because he called [British prime minister] Theresa May a whore. If you can't disagree with a woman without reaching for all those filthy old insults, screw you and your politics. I'm sick of 'liberal' men whose mask slips every time a woman displeases them, who reach immediately for crude and humiliating words associated with femaleness, act like old-school misogynists and then preen themselves as though they've been brave. When you do this, Mr. Liberal Cool Guy, you ally yourself, wittingly or not, with the men who send women violent pornographic images and rape threats, who try by every means possible to intimidate women out of politics and public spaces, both real and digital. 'Cunt', 'whore' and, naturally, rape. We're too ugly to rape, or we need raping, or we need raping and killing. Every woman I know who has dared express an opinion publically has endured this kind of abuse at least once, rooted in an apparent determination to humiliate or intimidate her on the basis that she is female. If you want to know how much fouler it gets if you also happen to be black or gay, ask [British politicians] Diane Abbott or Ruth Davidson. I don't care whether we're talking about Theresa May or [British politicians] Nicola Sturgeon or Kate Hoey or Yvette Cooper or [American politician] Hillary Clinton: femaleness is not a design flaw. If your immediate response to a woman who displeases you is to call her a synonym for her vulva, or compare her to a prostitute, then drop the pretense and own it: you're not a liberal. You're a few short steps away from some guy hiding behind a cartoon frog. [June 9, 2017]
I chose to remain a domiciled taxpayer for a couple of reasons. The main one was that I wanted my children to grow up where I grew up, to have proper roots in a culture as old and magnificent as Britain's; to be citizens, with everything that implies, of a real country, not free-floating ex-pats, living in the limbo of some tax haven and associating only with the children of similarly greedy tax exiles. A second reason, however, was that I am indebted to the British welfare state; the very one that Mr Cameron [David Cameron] would like to replace with charity handouts. When my life hit rock bottom, that safety net, threadbare though it had become under John Major's government, was there to break the fall. I cannot help feeling, therefore, that it would have been contemptible to scarper for the West Indies at the first sniff of a seven-figure royalty cheque. This, if you like, is my notion of patriotism. On the available evidence, I suspect that it is Lord Ashcroft's [Michael Ashcroft] idea of being a mug.
This may surprise people, but it is the truth. In many, many ways, Hufflepuff is my favorite House. There comes a point in the final book where each House has the choice whether or not to rise to a certain challenge... The Slytherins, for reasons that are understandable, decide they'd rather not play. The Ravenclaws: some decide they will, some decide they won't. The Hufflepuffs, virtually to a person, stay - as do the Gryffindors. Now, the Gryffindors comprise a lot of fool-hardy and show-offy people. That's just the way it is. I'm a Gryffindor, I'm allowed to say it. There's bravery and there's also showboating, and sometimes the two go together. The Hufflepuffs stayed for a different reason. They weren't trying to show off. They weren't being reckless. That's the essence of Hufflepuff House. Now my oldest child, my daughter Jessica, said something very profound to me not very many days ago actually. She said to me - and she, by the way, was not Sorted into Hufflepuff House - but she said to me, "I think we should all want to be Hufflepuffs." I can only say to you that I would not be at all disappointed to be Sorted into Hufflepuff House. So I'm a little upset that anyone does feel that way.
I gave up May 10, 2000... Now I'm addicted to Nicorets, but at least I haven't smoked... I'd given up before, I'd given it up for two years once before, and actually, Chamber of Secrets I wrote as a non-smoker. But then I started smoking again for Prisoner of Azkaban. Then Goblet of Fire I smoked through and now book five is going to be another non-smoker book. I can't go further than that. It's a day-to-day battle for me because I do love smoking.
[Harry Potter character] Lupin's a wonderful teacher and a very nice man but he has a failing and his failing is that he does like to be liked and that's where he slips up because he has been disliked so often that he's always so pleased to have friends so he cuts them an awful lot of slack.
Morrissey was a big deal to me when I was in my teens. A *very* big deal.
I love: Harry, Hermione, Ron, Hagrid, Dumbledore, Ginny, Fred, George and Lupin. I love writing (though would not necessarily want to meet) Snape. My favourite new character is Luna Lovegood.
[Harry Potter character Sirius Black] That man's got a lot of fans. Mostly female, I might add.
If sex isn't real, there's no same-sex attraction. If sex isn't real, the lived reality of women globally is erased. I know and love trans people, but erasing the concept of sex removes the ability of many to meaningfully discuss their lives. It isn't hate to speak the truth. [on Twitter, 2020]
'People who menstruate.' I'm sure there used to be a word for those people. Someone help me out. Wumben? Wimpund? Woomud?
The long-term health risks of cross-sex hormones have been now been tracked over a lengthy period. These side-effects are often minimised or denied by trans activists.
The Labour Party can no longer be counted on to defend women's rights.
Since speaking up about gender identity theory, I've received thousands of emails - more than I've ever had on a single subject. Many have come from professionals working in medicine, education and social work. All are concerned about the effects on vulnerable young people.
[on Alan Rickman's death]: There are no words to express how shocked and devastated I am to hear of Alan Rickman's death. He was a magnificent actor and a wonderful man. My thoughts are with Rima and the rest of Alan's family. We have lost a great talent They have lost part of their hearts.
[on Billy Bragg] Hard to think of anything that better illustrates misogyny than men complaining that a woman has a view on woman's rights.

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