|J.K. Rowling reading to children|
at the White House
Photo by Daniel Ogren
J.K. Rowling was born Joanne Rowling on July 31, 1965. She later added Katherine to her name so that she could have another initial for her pen name. She was born on the outskirts of Bristol, England and is the eldest of two daughters. Her parents moved Joanne and her younger sister Di to Winterbourne when Rowling was four. There, she met a young boy and a young girl whose last name she came to like. Their last name was Potter. The Rowling family moved one more time, when Joanne was nine, to Tutshill. The family was living here when her mother was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. Joanne was fifteen at the time.
J.K. Rowling attended a few grade schools and then went on to attend Wyedean Comprehensive. After her high school graduation she enrolled in the University of Exeter, where she studied French. During Rowling’s time in college she was able to spend a year in France as part of her studies.
J.K. Rowling’s mother died shortly after Christmas in 1990. In 1991, when she was 26, J.K Rowling moved to Portugal and began teaching English. There she met and married Jorges Arentes. The couple had a daughter, whom they named Jessica. The couple separated three years after their wedding and Rowling took her daughter with her to Edinburgh, where they could be close to Di. Rowling had been working on Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone for a few years by then and it was at this point that she set to finishing the novel in earnest.
After J.K. Rowling finished the first Harry Potter novel, it sold to Bloomsbury for only $4,000. Eventually Scholastic Press purchased the American rights to the novel. With the money from the sale, Rowling was able to quit her job and become a full-time writer.
J.K Rowling is now a millionaire and one of the most famous authors of our time. She married Neil Murray on December 26, 2006 and they are still happily married. She had two more children with her husband. Their names are David and MacKenzie.