This story is dedicated to the woman who impacted my childhood almost as much as my mother: the incredible Joanne “J.K.” Rowling...
In 1965, the English literary genius was born. Harry Potter’s mother was destined to become a distinguished author from a young age. She wrote her first book at age 6 (I couldn’t even read when I was six). It was a story about a rabbit, which she aptly named, “Rabbit”. Next came her first novel at 11, but it wasn’t until she was in her late twenties when she was sitting on a train bound for London when the idea for Harry Potter popped into her head.
For the next five years, Joanne mapped out the entire story line for the entire series. After scribbling down hundreds of pages of notes, she was ready to write. Teaching during the day and putting Hogwarts to paper at night, she eventually completed the manuscript for the first book. Rowling sent the first three chapters of The Sorcerer’s Stone to a bunch of publishers, got rejected from 12 of them, but thankfully one responded with “Can we see the rest?”.
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone hit the shelf in 1998 and was followed by six more world renowned books. The movies started hitting the big screen in 2001 and 8 world-altering productions were made in all. To add to the wizarding world, she also wrote three supplemental books including Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. Light work.
Skip to 2014 where Rowling silently proves that she’s far from done. She decided to write something different, but she had a problem. Putting her name on anything non-magical would’ve been a crime (one worthy of being sent to Azkaban). So, she created the pseudonym Robert Galbraith and started releasing crime novels left and right. In the past 7 years, “Galbraith/Rowling” has released five crime novels and four of them have been turned into TV shows.
It seems like everything that Rowling touches turns to gold. She’s a true icon. She’s taught inner-city kids, given a commencement address at Harvard, created a magical world, and has had a huge impact on millions of lives.
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