*This* Is The Reason J.K. Rowling Uses Initials Instead Of Her Full Name – And It’s *Seriously* Infuriating
Whether or not you’ve read the Harry Potter books, you’ll have heard of J.K. Rowling. World famous for her works of fiction as well as her ferocious, political wit on Twitter, the woman has become a household name.
But it seems that people are only now realising what ‘J.K.’ actually stands for (and die-hard fans of hers will be rolling their eyes at the thought).
Her name is Joanne Rowling, and the ‘K’ comes from her grandmother’s name, Kathleen. If you’re wondering why she doesn’t go by ‘Joanne’ in the publishing industry, prepare to get seriously pissed off.
When her first book, Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, got picked up by her publisher, she was warned that the books wouldn’t sell as well under an obviously female name. She was encouraged to use her initials to trick readers into thinking she was a male author – because, you know, women can’t write or something.
Speaking to CNN’s Christiane Amanpour, the author said, “My publisher, who published Harry Potter, they said to me, ‘We think this is a book that will appeal to boys and girls’, so they said, ‘Could we use your initials?’
“Because, basically, they were trying to disguise my gender. And obviously that lasted about three seconds, which is wonderful.”
The 51-year-old also penned two adult novels under the pseudonym Robert Galbraith, though she insists her reason for this had nothing to do with the former publisher’s advice.
When asked why she wrote The Cuckoo’s Calling and The Casual Vacancy under a man’s name, she said, “I certainly wanted to take my writing persona as far away as possible from me, so a male pseudonym seemed a good idea.
“I am proud to say, though, that when I ‘unmasked’ myself to my editor David Shelley who had read and enjoyed The Cuckoo’s Calling without realising I wrote it, one of the first things he said was ‘I never would have thought a woman wrote that.’ Apparently I had successfully channeled my inner bloke!”
Um, why can’t women just write as women?
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