THE SORCERER’S STONE – J. K. Rowling
Joanne Kathleen Rowling, born in 1965 in Bristol, England, showed a talent
for writing from a very early age. Her first effort was a book called ‘Rabbit’ written when she was just six years old and in her first year at school.
However, it would be through a string of personal events that her
sometimes-dormant pen would be regenerated and motivated to produce the Harry Potter series.
Now in her mid thirties, Rowling can look back with pride and satisfaction
in respect of her comparative lightning rise to fame.
She obtained her love for writing whilst at Exeter University from where she
graduated and became a teacher working in the South-west of England.
The seeds for Harry Potter were sown in the late 1980’s.
These were cultivated whilst on a teaching exchange to Baltimore, U.S.A., and finally formatted on her return to England around 1990.
In the early 1990’s she met a Portuguese journalist Jorge Arantes and they
had a whirlwind romance, but their marriage only lasted a few months, and in 1993 the pregnant Rowling returned to Great Britain and finally settled in Edinburgh, Scotland. She found herself almost destitute
and this was the catalyst to drive her writing.
Harry Potter and a grant from the Scottish Arts Council enabled the first
book ‘The Sorcerer’s Stone’ to be finished.
It was written on pieces of paper in an Edinburgh caf', and the final product won the British Book Awards’ ‘Children’s Book of the Year’ and rave reviews both in Europe and in the U.S.A.
Follow-up books were soon to appear on the bookstalls – ‘The Chamber of
Secrets’, ‘The Prisoner of Azkaban’, and ‘The Goblet of Fire’.
It was inevitable that Harry Potter would hit the silver screen, and this
transition has been far more successful than anyone would have thought possible. The 2001 film has been promoted by Warner Bros., produced by David Hayman, and directed by Chris Columbus, and uses a
star-studded cast, many of the actors coming from Britain. Rowling has been closely involved with the production of this film.
Her literary prowess has been rewarded in the form of an O.B.E. (Order of
the British Empire) from Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth.
Despite her fame, Joanne remains modest and is uncomfortable with the public
adulation she has received through her books.