Joanne Kathleen Rowling was born on July 31, 1965. She has written 2 novels for
adults, which remain unpublished. She got sudden worldwide recognition when
her children's adventure "Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone"
was published in 1997. For years all parts in the series (projected
to contain no more than 7 parts) were in the top 10 bestsellers of youth fiction.
In 1999, she was sued for plagiary by Nancy K. Stouffer, who claimed she
invented characters with the names Larry and Lily Potter (which was a lie)
and owned merchandizing rights to the word muggles (you can't have rights to a word,
especially not one that already existed prior to your use). On the characters, Rowling
commented that they were mainly taken from her own life. She knew an Ian Potter whom Harry is modelled after, and
Hermione is modelled after her own childhood. Apart from that, she never showed
interest in merchandizing anyway, because not until the movie rights were sold could
any merchandizing be bought. In September 2002 a New York judge ruled that Stouffer
was a fraud who had to pay the legal costs for the trial.
She doesn't look for publicity and rarely gives interviews, but she always is willing
to sign books in bookstores because she likes to speak to the kids who read her books
and listen to what they have to say. She gets more mail than she can answer, but if a
child addresses a letter to Headmaster Dumbledore to request enrollment in the Wizard's
school, she sends them a handwritten personal letter in reply.
In the year 2000, she got an honorary degree at Dartmouth, New Hampshire, and Napier, Edinburgh,
and she was 'knighted' as Officer of the British Empire. Christmas 2001 she remarried,
expecting her second child in the spring of 2003.