"It takes a great deal of bravery to stand up to our enemies, but just as much as to stand up to our friends." Wise words from that wise old headmaster of Hogwarts, Albus Dumbledore - and particularly appropriate for pre-teens and teens today.
J K Rowling
Find out a little about the author of Harry Potter, JK Rowling, and use our printable activity with the kids.
Image by Daniel Ogren
Joanne Rowling, who calls herself Jo but is best known by her pen name, J K Rowling, is of course the author of the hugely popular Harry Potter series of books. She has also written four books for adults, three under the pen name Robert Galbraith, and written and produced the film Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, which hit the cinemas in November 2016.
Why JK Rowling?
When her first book, Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, was published, Joanne's publishers suggested that she use her initials so as not to put boys off reading a book written by a woman! As she didn't have a middle name, she used the initial K for Kathleen, her grandmother's name.
Joanne was born in Gloucestershire in July 1965. As a child she wrote fantasy stories to read to her younger sister. She says that she based Hermione Granger on herself aged 11, so perhaps we can imagine what she was like at that age! As a teenager she wasn't happy: her mother was ill and she didn't get on with her father at all. Despite that, she got very good A levels and was Head Girl of her school, moving on afterwards to Exeter University.
Joanne first had the idea for her Harry Potter stories in 1990, on a train journey, and she immediately began to write. Soon afterwards she moved to Portugal, to teach English in the evenings and write during the day. While in Portugal she met and married her first husband, and had a daughter, but the marriage didn't last long and in 1993 Joanne moved to Edinburgh to be close to her sister. She would take her daughter out for a walk and then, when she fell asleep, sit in coffee shops writing her book! By 1995 she had finished Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone. It was rejected by 12 publishing houses, before being picked up by Bloomsbury, who published a very cautious 1000 copies - 500 of which were distributed to libraries. If you are lucky enough to find one of those 1000 first editions it could be worth up to £25,000! The book was hugely popular and six more Harry Potter books followed, with the seventh, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, selling an amazing 11 million copies on the first day of its release in the UK and US!
And then, of course, came the movies, with the first released in 2001 and each subsequent movie awaited eagerly all over the world by Harry Potter fans!
JK Rowling Printables
"Differences of habit and language are nothing at all if our aims are identical and our hearts are open." This lovely quote from the Harry Potter books, by wise magician Albus Dumbledore, is of course more than appropriate in the real world too.
Mary Anne Evans used the pen name George Eliot because she thought her novels would be taken more seriously with a male name.
"Happiness can be found even in the darkest of times if one only remembers to turn on the light." So said Albus Dumbledore in the Harry Potter novels, and he was right!
Our famous people notebooking pages are designed for older children to do their own research and write biographies. These feature the author of the Harry Potter series, J K Rowling.
Use this J K Rowling poster as a project cover or as part of a famous authors or Harry Potter display.
Our J K Rowling story paper would be great for children to practice biography writing skills. We have a lined version for older children and a handwriting version for younger children who can record a fact or two.
Find out more about J K Rowling, the biggest selling children's author ever, with help from our simple guided worksheets.
Children can use this writing paper to write a pretend interview with the author J K Rowling, or perhaps for a report or letter. We have black and white and colour versions to choose from.