JK Rowling is one of the most famous rags to riches tales there is.
She was a single mum when she famously created Harry Potter, which she is said to have written in cafes in Edinburgh while on benefits.
The hugely successful novel, which has now sold more than 120million copies, was bashed out on an old typewriter and was rejected by 12 publishing houses before she secured a deal in 1997.
Just a few years later, in 2003, the author had made it onto Britain’s rich lists, where headlines claimed she was “richer than the Queen”.
JK had amassed a massive fortune of more than £1billion – and was one of the youngest people to make it onto the list.
However, despite still be undoubtedly a very wealthy woman JK Rowling is no longer a billionaire – and its nothing to do with her enormous earning power.
The 54-year-old rakes in massive amounts from not only her series of Harry Potter books, which has spawned a hugely succesful film franchise, theme parks, toys, games and many other merchandise.
She is also the brains behind another super successful series of films, the Fantastic Beasts movies, and has a sell-out West End play, The Cursed Child.
As well as the many wizarding world spin-offs, JK Rowling has proved herself as one of the country’s most popular crime authors.
Writing as Robert Galbraith, she had published four novels in the Cormoran Strike series, with plans for a fifth in the pipeline.
Her worth has now been estimated as a gigantic £795million, up £45million in the last 12 months, according to the Sunday Times Rich List.
But this pales in comparison to some of the other big earners on the list.
Britain’s richest woman is Kirsten Rausing, who boasts a £12.1billion fortune. The 67-year-old is now the leading business mind in the Rausing family, which made its vast wealth thanks to milk cartons.
So, how has JK Rowling’s wealth, which was estimated at more than £1billion 17 years ago, not soared along with many others on the list?
The author is well known for her philanthrophy and has given tens of millions to charity.
During the coronavirus crisis, JK Rowling donated a massive £1million to homeless charity Crisis and Refuge, which helps people dealing with domestic abuse.
She announced the huge gift on May 2, the same day as the anniversary fictional Battle of Hogwarts.
Revealing her huge donation on Twitter, the writer said: “So on this anniversary of a great wizarding victory, I’m thinking of the people who’re out there doing their jobs to protect us and our way of life. I have 3 key workers in my immediate family, and like all such relatives, I’m torn between pride and anxiety.
“As ever in a crisis of this sort, the poorest and most vulnerable are hit hardest, so in honour of the Battle of Hogwarts, I’ll be making a donation of £1m, half of which will go to crisis.org.uk, who’re helping the homeless during the pandemic and half of which will go to refuge.org.uk, because we know that domestic abuse has, sadly, increased hugely during the lockdown.”
And this is only the tip of JK Rowling’s giving ice-berg.
Way back in 2000, the author, who has sold more than 500million books worldwide, launched the first of her charitable foundations.
The Volant Charitable Trust uses its annual budget of £5.1million to combat poverty and social inequality as well as giving cash to help youngsters from single parent homes and also pays for research into multiple sclerosis.
JK Rowling’s mother had the disease and passed away aged just 45.
The Harry Potter creator is also the president of Gingerbread, a chairy that helps one parent families.
She also helped raised £15.7million, along with Delia Smith and author Helen Fielding, for Comic Relief in 2001 by donating all the profits from her two booklets, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them and Quidditch Through the Ages.
In 2005, JK Rowling, along with politician Emma Nicholson, founded the charitable group, Lumos, which works to promoted the end of the institutionalism of children around the world.
So far it has helped more than 17,000 children and young people.
In 2013, kindhearted JK donated all of the earnings from The Tales of Beedle the Bard to the charity – a massive £19million
Multiple sclerosis is another cause extremely close to the writer’s heart following her mother’s heartbreakingly early death from the condition in 1990.
She was one of the biggest donors to the new Centre for Regenerative Medicine and Edinburgh University in 2006 and has since given the facility, which has been renamed the Anne Rowling Regenerative Neurology Clinic, a further £25million.
JK Rowling said: “When the Anne Rowling Clinic was first founded, none of us could have predicted the incredible progress that would be made in the field of regenerative neurology, with the clinic leading the charge.
“It’s a matter of great pride for me that the clinic has combined these lofty ambitions with practical, on the ground support and care for people with MS, regardless of stage and type; I’ve heard at first-hand what a difference this support can make.”
A proud supporter of the Labour Party, JK Rowling has also given millions to schemes and projects that help some of the most vulnerable in society.
But her generosity isn’t the only reason JK Rowling lost her billionaire status.
Despite her massive earning powers, the author has always refused to move into a tax haven – instead remaining in the UK and paying her tax in full.