The Journey of Writing Harry Potter By J.K. Rowling

J.K. Rowling, the British star writer well known for her seven-volume fantasy series, Harry Potter. Did you know, the series was published from 1997 to 2007, sold over 600 million copies, been translated into 84 languages, and spawned a global media franchise.

In this article, let’s try to take a journey back into the writing of the Harry Potter.

Author J.K. Rowling with her book Harry Potter.
Author J.K. Rowling with her book Harry Potter. Forbes images

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The Inception

The story started back in 1990, when Rowling was traveling to London King’s Cross from Manchester, and here she got an idea for Harry Potter. She didn’t have a pen and was too shy to ask anyone for one on the train. This gave her the full four hours on the train to think up all the ideas for the book.

The Writing Process

Rowling wrote mostly in longhand and gradually built up a mass of notes, many of which were scribbled on odd scraps of paper. She took approximately six years to write the first book in the Harry Potter series, “Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone”. The entire series of seven books took her about seventeen years in total to complete, from 1990 to 2007. This includes time spent on planning, writing, and editing.

J.K. Rowling’s Struggles

The seven-year period that followed the conception of the Harry Potter series saw the death of Rowling’s mother, the birth of her first child, divorce from her first husband, and relative poverty. Despite these challenges, Rowling still found the energy to chip away at the book.

The Publication

In 1995, Rowling completed the manuscript for Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone (later known in America as Sorcerer’s Stone) and began shopping it to publishers. The early feedback didn’t augur well for Rowling’s career as an author. However, she persevered, and the rest, as they say, is history.

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