Love or loathe the Harry Potter series of books (and movies), one can hardly ignore the phenomenon that dreamed it all up, JK Rowling. A documentary on ITV the other night, A Year in the Life of JK Rowling - allowed an insight into the author's life. She was asked everything from her love of forests, to childhood and relationship with her parents (and how these fed into her creation of the boy wizard), to whether her fabulous wealth comes between her and friends, and whether people write her asking for money (naturally, they do) to whether she likes the book run. Interestingly, JK Rowling knows the unwritten future of her characters, who married whom, the names of their children, who was OK, who wasn't. The author goes back at some point to the lowly Edinburgh flat where as a struggling single parent she wrote the first book. "This is where I turned my life around," she says, and proceeds to weep.
Perhaps the most touching scene, for me, is at the beginning of the documentary, where JK and her sister Di look over old family photographs. Their parents had wanted a boy, to be named 'Simon John' when a girl, Joanne (JK), came instead.
"She was a massive disappointment," says Di, sweetly.
What a disappointment...