Author of A Guide to the Harry Potter Novels (Continuum International Publishing Group 2002), Julia Eccleshare is also a journalist and broadcaster. She is Children's Book Editor for the Guardian and regularly appears on BBC Radio 4.
Rowling moved to Edinburgh, Scotland to be near her sister in late 1993. She taught French and began writing the Harry Potter novels in earnest in her early years in Edinburgh. Her first flat in Edinburgh was in Leith. She was able to move into a nicer neighborhood, 19 Hazelbank Terrace, in 1997, shortly after the first novel was published.
The Muggle school that Justin Finch-Fletchley was to have attended until he received his Hogwarts letter (CS6). The Wall Game at Eton was at one time thought by some readers to be the inspiration for Quidditch.
Office manager and personal assistant to Christopher Little at the time JKR first submitted her manuscript of PS to the Christopher Little Agency in 1996. Bryony Evens had set Rowling's manuscript into the pile to be automatically rejected because the agency didn't handle children's literature, but she read the first chapter on a break and presented it to Fleur Howle, a freelance reader for the agency. After requesting and devouring the balance of the manuscript, Evens presented the work to Christopher Little, who read it overnight and was enthusiastic. Evens handled all the editorial communications with JKR at this stage. Before Rowling could meet her in person, Evens left the Christopher Little Agency to work for an estate agency (a job she held for three years before returning to publishing at Michael O'Mara Books). Bryony Evens and Rowling did meet eventually at the Cheltenham Literary Festival in October 1998 (SS_JKRB).
Rowling attended university in Exeter. Just to the east of Exeter lies the village of of Ottery St. Mary, while the village of Chudleigh is located just to the west of Exeter. See each of their entries for possible connections with place names in the Harry Potter books.
JKR attended university at Exeter University (http://www.ex.ac.uk). She took a degree in French and Classics in 1987. She studied abroad in Paris for a year (1985-86). She has indicated she would have preferred to study English at university because of her lifelong love of literature, but her parents encouraged her to study French, which they presumed would help her secure a good job after university. "Her parents wanted her to be a translator or interpreter, maybe work in the United Nations" (WP1). She was awarded an honorary doctor of letters degree from Exeter University on 14 July 2000.