To Rowling, With Love

As a kid, she was always teased. As a grown-up, she was always underestimated. Her teachers were proud of her creative work but her classmates were always jealous. Her books were beautiful, but she wasn’t given a chance to publish them. Yes, this is the story of all of J.K Rowling’s adventures.

When Joanne moved to a new school she didn’t have many friends. Everyone called her a teacher’s pet and no one liked her. She was the quiet and shy girl sitting in the corner and going on adventures in her daydreams.

She was the smartest child in her class, and the character of Hermione Jean Granger is based on herself in middle school. Those years brought out a new character in the Harry Potter series. The character of Severus Snape is based on her science teacher who she thought was very strict and scary.

One day she went to her friend, Ian Potter’s house. They played witches and wizards. Ian wore a long black cape with a broken pair of black-rimmed glasses. Something about his last name and costume always stuck with her. Joanne passed her higher education in the next ten years ready to move on with her life. Being a single mom with a little daughter, she worked from home. While traveling on a train to go to work, a figure came to her mind. He was a boy of about eight. She didn’t know his name, she didn’t know where he came from, but she knew that they had a long journey ahead.

During the next five years, she came up with her story based on the new character of Harry James Potter. She scribbled little pieces of the story on whatever she found. Old scrap paper, newspaper, and even on the wall. Once it so happened that while traveling on a plane, an idea struck her and she wrote the four names of the Hogwarts houses with their founders on the back of a sick bag.

Then in the next five years, she sat down to write her books. The famous seven books are written by one author, Joanne Rowling. After working almost non-stop it felt like she could once again be stress-free, but this was not to be. She went from publisher to publisher looking for someone who would publish her story. But most of them turned her down as women were thought not to be good authors during those times. Then finally, one day she mailed the first chapter, The Boy Who Lived, from her first book, The Philosopher’s Stone to a publishing company. They loved it and said that they will only publish it, only if she changed her name, as they thought that boys would not read a story written by a woman.

In the first year alone, over a million copies were sold and J.K Rowling saw success. She wrote more books and is the most famous author in the world today. 

// This piece has been penned by 13-year-old Umika Mukherjee as a part of a writing task given during the regular creative writing classes //

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