A single mother, living on welfare in Edinburgh, Scotland, became an internationally bestselling author. If that isn't a story of success, we don't know what is.
The idea of Harry Potter first came to Joanne Rowling, better known by her pen name of J.K. Rowling, when she was riding a train from Manchester to London in 1990. Seven years later, at the age of 32, she sold her manuscript of "Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone" to Bloomsbury, a British book publishing company. The rest, as they say, is history. Rowling is now one of Britain's wealthiest women and is said to be richer than the Queen of England herself.