Where It All Began by Erin Steinberg


So much Harry Potter, and I am definitely not mad about it. I knew today we were going to learn all about J.K. Rowling, so I even wore my new Deathly Hallows necklace that I bought when we went to the Harry Potter Experience.

Today was a pretty chill day, but also a pretty cool day. I learned a lot about the author of my favorite series that I never knew about before, and it was genuinely interesting learning about where J.K. Rowling came from and how she thought up the Harry Potter series.

A few things about J.K. Rowling stuck out to me today. First, her real name is Joanne Rowling. She decided to use her initials instead because she thought her books would not sell as well if people knew they were written by a woman. However, she does not have a middle name, so she took her grandmother’s name, Kathleen, and used it to get J.K. I found out that she thought up Harry Potter when she had a four hour train delay when going from Manchester to London, only she did not have pen or paper, so she had to think it all up in her head.


After learning more about J.K. Rowling, we went on an adventure around Edinburgh. First, we visited Greyfriars Cemetery, where she walked around and used some of the names off the gravestones for some of the characters. There was a “McGonagall”, a “Moody” and I took a picture with Tom Riddle’s gravestone (which is slightly eerie but also pretty exciting!).


After that, a few steps down the road was The Elephant House, where Rowling sat on the third floor with her coffee and wrote the Harry Potter books. Apparently there is a private school in view from the third floor that helped her come up with the inspiration for Hogwarts. It is so interesting putting things from real life and the book together, seeing where it all came from.


It was great seeing where it all started after visiting the Harry Potter Experience last week. It was like coming full circle, and now I can say I have officially done pretty much everything Harry Potter there is to do.

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