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A Failure to Success Story J.K. Rowling

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I’m a great admirer of the Harry Potter series, and have enjoyed reading a few of the books and seen all of the movies.

I am sure that most of you have heard of Harry Potter. The boy wizard who attends Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. We’ve all watched him grow up through the movies and enjoyed the magic that comes by his very existence.

We have all been captivated by Harry’s quest to overcome the Dark wizard Lord Voldemort, and wait with baited breath at the end of each book/movie for the next episode to be revealed.

This one character has captured the imagination, hearts and minds of the world.

We have to thank the fantastic author J.K.Rowling. Yet her own personal story should inspire each of you just as much as her fictional characters. Here is a woman that had virtually hit the bottom, who went on to achieve greatness.

j-k-rowlingAlmost as fantastic as the Harry Potter adventurers is the story of J.K. Rowling. “Magic Beyond Words: The J.K. Rowling Story” dramatizes the British author’s struggle to bring the beloved wizard fantasy of Harry Potter to life. Starting out as a single mother on welfare, she become one of Britain’s wealthiest women and of course the creator of a magical figure.

How can she not motivate anyone with her rags to riches story, in which she progressed from living on state benefits to multi-millionaire status within five years? What a transformation, and it shows anything is possible.

When she addressed the graduating class at Harvard she spoke about failure. She related a story about a young woman who gave up her dream of writing novels but ended up as an unemployed single mom “as poor as it is possible to be in modern Britain without being homeless.” It’s her story.

In her own words she saw herself as was “the biggest failure I knew.” She had a failed marriage that caused her so much misery that she suffered clinical depression.

Rowling having seen her mother die after suffering a long time from multiple sclerosis moves to Portugal for a job and meet her then future husband. They had a child, but the rushed marriage ends quickly when he became abusive. She returned to the UK with her daughter and has to apply for welfare.

harry-potter-bookShe fights to provide for her daughter and while doing so, she completes her first book, you may have heard of it,  Harry Potter and The Philosopher’s Stone. This was produced on an old manual typewriter, and much of it was written in cafes, because she had to take her young daughter out on walks to get her to fall asleep to then give her the time for creativity.

Once completed, twelve publishing houses initially rejected the manuscript. Fortunately, a small publishing house agreed to publish the book.

The rest of her story is well known. Rowling became an international Best Selling Author! They have become the best-selling book series in history with the highest-grossing film series in history.

Failure meant a stripping away of the inessential. I stopped pretending to myself that I was anything other than what I was, and began to direct all my energy to finishing the only work that mattered to me. Had I really succeeded at anything else, I might never have found the determination to succeed in the one area where I truly belonged. I was set free, because my greatest fear had been realized, and I was still alive, and I still had a daughter whom I adored, and I had an old typewriter, and a big idea. And so rock bottom became a solid foundation on which I rebuilt my life. J.K. Rowling

May her failure to success story inspire and encourage you to never give up on your biggest dreams.

No words can do her story justice except those that she herself used on her Harvard Commencement Speech. I give you the opportunity to watch it for yourself.

[youtube video_id=”wHGqp8lz36c” width=”640″ height=”360″ ]



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About the author: Larry Lewis
I'm Larry. As an Executive Life Coach, entrepreneur and writer, I am an unshakable optimist dedicated to helping you become the person you most want to be. I am devoted to sharing ideas, tools and resources that will help you create a better, stress free, well balanced life.
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