According to Forbes Magazine 2006, J. K. Rowling is the first author to become a billionaire from writing. Her claim to fame is, of course, the Harry Potter series, which shot her out of the obscurity of single motherdom to super star status. She has reached all kinds of heights, including being one of only two contemporary authors to spend more than a year on the New York Times best-seller lists.
J. K. Rowling was born Joanne Rowling on the 31st of July, 1965 in Yate, Gloucestershire, England. Her sister Di was born nearly two years later. Rowling's love of story telling began at an early age, as she enjoyed nothing better than making up stories for her sister. In 1971, the family moved to the nearby town of Winterbourne, where Rowling encountered a family called Potter. She was enchanted by the name. Her family moved again when she was nine to the Welsh countryside, where she attended both primary and secondary school, and met the original Ford Angelica from Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets. During this time, Rowling's mother was diagnosed with multiple sclerocis.
Rowling attended the Univerisity of Exter and studied French, having been pressured by her parents to take a more useful degree than English. With her qualifications she worked at a couple of jobs in London, one of which was a translator for Amnesty International.
It was around this time that Rowling had the idea for Harry Potter, while stuck on a train that was delayed for four hours. Soon after she began the book, her mother died at the age of forty five. Rowling continued writing but decided to get away for a while. She went to Portugal, where she taught English and married a Portugese television journalist. The marraige lasted just over a year, and Rowling and her new daughter returned to Britain to be near her sister. Rawlings knew she would need to get a full time teaching job and had to hurry up and finish her book. Rawling recieved a grant from the Scottish Arts Council, and managed to find both an agent and a publisher.
J.K.Rowling currently lives in Scotland with her second husband Neil Murray and her three children.