50 Interesting Facts about J. K. Rowling

J.K. Rowling is a British author who is best known for writing the Harry Potter series of books, which have sold over 500 million copies worldwide and have been adapted into a successful film franchise. Before becoming a writer, Rowling worked as a researcher and a teacher. It was during a train journey from Manchester to London that the idea for Harry Potter first came to her.

Rowling wrote the first Harry Potter book while she was a struggling single mother living on government benefits. The book was initially rejected by several publishers before finally being picked up by Bloomsbury Publishing in 1997. The success of the Harry Potter series turned Rowling into a global phenomenon and one of the richest women in the world.

In addition to writing, Rowling is also known for her philanthropic work. She has donated millions of dollars to various charities, including organizations that support research into multiple sclerosis and neurological disorders. She is also an advocate for children’s welfare and has worked with organizations that provide aid to children affected by poverty and war.

Despite her enormous success, Rowling has also faced controversy over her views on certain social issues, including gender identity. Nonetheless, her impact on the literary world and popular culture is undeniable, and her books continue to inspire and captivate readers of all ages.

J. K. Rowling

J. K. Rowling

Do you want to know more about J. K. Rowling? Let’s take a look at these 50 interesting facts about J. K. Rowling.

  1. J.K. Rowling’s full name is Joanne Rowling. She added the “K” as a tribute to her paternal grandmother, whose name was Kathleen.
  2. Rowling was born in Yate, England, on July 31, 1965.
  3. She attended the University of Exeter, where she studied French and Classics.
  4. While working as a researcher and bilingual secretary in London, Rowling started writing the first Harry Potter book, Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone.
  5. Rowling was initially rejected by twelve publishers before Bloomsbury Publishing decided to publish the first Harry Potter book in 1997.
  6. The Harry Potter books have sold over 500 million copies worldwide and have been translated into over 80 languages.
  7. Rowling has won numerous awards for her writing, including the British Book Awards Children’s Book of the Year, the Hugo Award, and the Bram Stoker Award.
  8. She is also the first person to become a billionaire through writing.
  9. Rowling has donated a large portion of her wealth to charity, including the Children’s High Level Group, which she co-founded.
  10. Rowling’s books have been adapted into a successful film series, with the eight films grossing over $7 billion worldwide.
  11. Rowling wrote the screenplay for the 2016 film Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, which was a spinoff of the Harry Potter series.
  12. In 2012, Rowling published her first novel for adults, The Casual Vacancy.
  13. She has also written several crime novels under the pseudonym Robert Galbraith.
  14. Rowling is a fan of the Scottish rugby team and has supported them for many years.
  15. She is also a fan of the rock band The Smiths.
  16. Rowling has spoken openly about her struggles with depression and suicidal thoughts.
  17. She was appointed Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in 2000 and Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) in 2017.
  18. Rowling has been married twice and has three children.
  19. She has a passion for writing letters and has corresponded with many of her fans.
  20. She is also an advocate for multiple sclerosis research, as her mother died from the disease.
  21. Rowling has expressed her love for the city of Edinburgh, where she wrote the first Harry Potter book.
  22. The Harry Potter books have been banned in several countries due to their content.
  23. Rowling was named the “Most Influential Woman in Britain” in 2010 by leading magazine editors.
  24. She has won numerous honorary degrees from universities around the world.
  25. Rowling was a single mother living on welfare when she started writing the first Harry Potter book.
  26. The Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry was inspired by Rowling’s time spent studying at the University of Exeter, which has a similar collegiate system.
  27. Rowling has said that the character of Hermione Granger is based on her younger self.
  28. She is a big fan of crime writer Ian Rankin and has named one of her characters after him.
  29. Rowling is the first person to become a billionaire through writing, but has since lost her billionaire status due to her charitable donations.
  30. She has a deep love for animals and has several pets, including a dog, two cats, and a tortoise.
  31. Rowling has stated that the character of Harry Potter was inspired by a real boy she saw on a train.
  32. She has a fear of public speaking and has said that writing is her preferred method of communication.
  33. J.K. Rowling was the first author to become a billionaire from writing books.
  34. She has also been recognized for her philanthropy, having donated over $160 million to charity.
  35. She has also been vocal about her struggles with mental health, including depression and anxiety.
  36. In addition to the Harry Potter series, Rowling has written several other books, including “The Casual Vacancy,” “The Cuckoo’s Calling,” and “The Ickabog.”
  37. Rowling has faced criticism for her portrayal of certain characters and cultures in the Harry Potter series, particularly with regards to Indigenous people and people of color.
  38. She has also been criticized for her views on gender identity, including her stance against transgender rights.
  39. Despite this criticism, Rowling has maintained a massive fan base and her books continue to be widely read and loved around the world.
  40. The Harry Potter series has been translated into over 80 languages, making it one of the most widely translated works of literature in history.
  41. The Harry Potter books have also been adapted into a hugely successful film franchise, with eight movies in total.
  42. Rowling was heavily involved in the making of the films and even wrote the screenplay for the first installment, “Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone.”
  43. In addition to the films, the Harry Potter universe has also spawned a theme park, merchandise, and a stage play.
  44. Rowling has been awarded numerous awards and honors throughout her career, including the Order of the British Empire and the PEN America Literary Service Award.
  45. She was also chosen to carry the Olympic torch in 2012, as part of the torch relay leading up to the London Olympic Games.
  46. Rowling has been married twice and has three children.
  47. In her free time, she enjoys writing crime novels under the pseudonym Robert Galbraith.
  48. In 2006, J.K. Rowling donated £10 million (approximately $13 million USD) to establish the Anne Rowling Regenerative Neurology Clinic at the University of Edinburgh. The clinic is named after her mother, who died from multiple sclerosis at the age of 45. It focuses on finding treatments and a cure for degenerative neurological conditions like multiple sclerosis and Alzheimer’s disease.
  49. J.K. Rowling has been recognized for her humanitarian efforts and philanthropy. She has received numerous awards, including the Order of the British Empire, the Légion d’honneur from France, and the Hans Christian Andersen Literature Award. In 2020, she was awarded the Ripple of Hope Award by the Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights organization for her work advocating for children’s rights and the fight against inequality.
  50. Despite her success and fame, Rowling remains down-to-earth and committed to her craft, continuing to write and inspire fans around the world.

J.K. Rowling is an incredibly talented and accomplished author who has captured the hearts and minds of millions of readers around the world. Her books have become cultural touchstones, inspiring countless adaptations and spin-offs in various forms of media. She has also become a philanthropist, using her wealth and influence to support numerous charitable causes. While she has faced her share of controversy and criticism, Rowling remains a beloved figure to many who appreciate her creativity and storytelling abilities. Her contributions to the literary world have earned her numerous accolades and a place in the pantheon of great authors.