Life of JK Rowling Joanne Kathleen (JK) Research Paper

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Life of JK Rowling

Joanne Kathleen (JK) Rowling was born on July 31, 1965 in Chipping Sodbury, Gloucestershire, England. Ms. Rowling claims that she had been writing since she was 5 or 6 years old. Her first story, called Rabbit, was filled with interesting characters, such as a large bee appropriately named Miss Bee. Ms. Rowling, along with her parents and sister, moved twice while she was growing up. While at one of their homes in Winterbourne, she had friends next door whose last name was Potter. JK never forgot the children, or the last name, which she liked very much.

When she was 9 years old, her family moved to Tutshill. Ms. Rowling attended a primary school there and later attended Wyedean Comprehensive. Ms. Rowling describes herself as being shy, freckly, with no natural athletic ability but a great love of literature. Later, when she graduated from Wyedean Comprehensive, she attended Exeter University. Here, Ms. Rowling studied French after her parents encouraged her into what they believed would be a wonderful career as a bilingual secretary. After graduation, however, Ms. Rowling realized that she was not meant to be a secretary.

When Ms. Rowling was 26 years old, she moved to Portugal to be an English teacher. Ms. Rowling has been quoted many times as saying she loved teaching English, often teaching in the afternoons and evenings so that she could be free to work on her writing during the mornings. It was during this period that she began working on a story with the primary character of a 'wizard."

Ms. Rowling met and married a journalist in Portugal and her daughter Jessica was born in 1993. Shortly after the birth of her daughter, the marriage ended in divorce and Ms. 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 Ms. Rowling became determined to not only finish her Harry Potter 'wizard' novel, but to get it published. She would often write in restaurants, where she and her daughter could stay warm while she wrote. Ms. Rowling requested a grant from the Scottish Arts Council, which she eventually received, in order to complete her book. When it was completed and after several rejections, Ms. Rowling sold the novel, Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, to Bloomsbury in the UK for the equivalent of about $4,000.

To support her daughter and herself, Ms. Rowling began working as a French teacher. After several months in this profession, 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 moment of her life.

After Bloomsbury Children's Books published the book in June 1997, it wasn't long before Ms. Rowling was recognized as a major discovery. The awards and accolades grew quickly for both Harry Potter and Ms. Rowling. In 1997, the book won the British Book Awards Children's Book of the Year as well as the Smarties Prize. When published in the United States, in September of 1998, the book was renamed and released under Arthur a Levine Books / Scholastic Press. The new title of this book was named Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone.

Ms. Rowling quickly wrote a sequel, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, which was published July of 1998 in the United Kingdom, and in June 1999 in the United States. Immediately after this successful sequel, a third book, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, was published in July and September of 1999, in the United Kingdom as well as the United States, respectively. Ms. Rowling became a household name when the first three installments of the Harry Potter series took over the top three slots in the New York Times bestsellers list.

By the summer of 2000, Ms. Rowling had reportedly earned over $400 million for her first three Harry Potter books, which have been printed in 35 languages and sold over 30 million copies. Her fourth book in the popular series, entitled Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, pre-sold over 1 million advanced copies, with a first printing of 5.3 million. Because of her domination and incredible success on the New York Times bestseller list, the decision was made to introduce a bestseller list for children's books, which would eliminate the dominating factor… [END OF PREVIEW]

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Life of JK Rowling Joanne Kathleen (JK).  (2005, February 28).  Retrieved January 20, 2020, from https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/life-jk-rowling-joanne-kathleen/179303

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"Life of JK Rowling Joanne Kathleen (JK)."  Essaytown.com.  February 28, 2005.  Accessed January 20, 2020.
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