J.K Rowling is one of the most popular writers in the world today.
Not really surprising given that she’s the woman behind the bestselling book series of all time. But before finding fame and fortune, the British author went through extremely difficult times in her life.
Let’s take a look back at her inspiring journey.
Born Joanne Rowling, she grew up in Gloucester, England and started writing fantasy stories as a kid. Despite her difficult teen years, she got a degree in French from the University of Exeter.
It was four years after earning her diploma that she came up with the idea for the Harry Potter books during a train ride. Rowling then began writing her future bestseller while struggling to survive as a single mother living on government welfare.
Despite the hardships though, the now-54-year-old credits the years of struggle as helping her write the book.
Five years after she first thought of the idea for Harry Potter, she finished the first book in the series. She was initially turned away by numerous publishers before being signed on by Christopher Little who cut her a deal of £2,500 ($3,141) advance.
Fortunately, Rowling’s book proved to be a hit both in the United Kingdom and the United States selling more than what her publishers anticipated.
As of current estimates, her entire seven-book series has sold 500 million copies in the world. The final installment, ‘Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows’ even broke records because of how fast it sold.
Book to Film
That’s just a portion of her success though. Rowling also hit the jackpot when she signed on with Warner Bros. to adapt the books into films.
Altogether the eight Harry Potter movies grossed over $7.7 billion. It’s believed that Rowling may have had a 10% share of the profits earning her $770 million for the film series.
Not only that, spin-off films like the Fantastic Beasts series also experienced box office success as well and added to Rowling’s already immense wealth.
There’s also the author’s deal with Universal Studios for the creation of the Wizarding World of Harry Potter attractions. Reports say that she earned a whopping $60 million in just over a year because of it.
All things considered, Rowling’s net worth is estimated to be around $1 billion making her the first-ever writer to reach billionaire status.