With her ‘Harry Potter’ series of novels, J.K. Rowling created a literary phenomenon that has enchanted readers of all ages and all over the world. We asked the beloved author five questions about her life and writing, and her answers will blow you away.
1. Did you try to publish any other books before Harry Potter?
I actually wrote several stories—one about an orphan boy who had ticks, one about a boy who lived under a staircase and was covered head-to-toe in ticks, and one about a boy who could theoretically do magic, if not for the excessive number of ticks that were sucking his magic blood out of him and rendering him almost entirely immobile. I think I had all the pieces of Harry Potter for a while; it just took me a bit to put them all together.
2. The school of Hogwarts has four houses—Gryffindor, Ravenclaw, Hufflepuff, and Slytherin. What house do you think you would be in?
Well, since I wrote the series, I’ve always fancied myself as the Sorting Hat, the grumpy headpiece that sits on people’s heads and tells them what house they’ve been sorted into. I’d love to sit on the head of everyone in the world and boss them around, but mostly I’d just relish the opportunity to come in contact with so much hair.
3. What magical item from the wizarding world do you most wish existed in real life?
I’d have to say the invisibility cloak, because I’d love to sneak into a locker room and just see what it’s like in there. I’ve never been in a locker room before, and every time I’ve tried to go in one, a large locker-room attendant who looks like my mom has always said, “This is not for you, J.K.,” and fined me $1 billion. A room full of lockers stuffed with used socks and bagged sandwiches sounds like a dazzling sight to behold, but for now, I guess I’ll just have to keep imagining it.
4. What’s your favorite social media platform?
I love Twitter because it allows me to clap back. I love owning trolls via epic clapbacks. Twitter allows me to stick it to trolls on the internet while owning them, clapping back in an epic way that takes down the trolls and also the haters as well. When I’m clapping back, I’m clapping back at the trolls who are about to be owned by me, the queen of Twitter clapbacks of epic proportions and also of the classic childhood series that charmed children and adults alike, as well as a large portion of the trolls, prior to the epic clapback takedowns served up courtesy of me, J.K. Rowling the clapback queen.
5. What’s one piece of advice you’d have for young people who aspire to be authors one day?
Don’t fall into the classic trap of only telling stories about ducklings who are trying to reunite with their lost mothers. While this is obviously an immensely popular genre for old and new writers alike, remember that it never hurts to branch out—could the mother, perhaps, be a swan? Could the lost baby duckling be looking for an aunt or an older sister instead? Asking yourself these types of questions early and often will help your writing stand out from the rest.