JK Rowling is best known as the genius behind the "Harry Potter" series, but she didn't come up with the idea for Harry, Ron, and Hermione until she was 25.
She struggled to get the book published at first, and couldn't focus at work, which led to her being fired from Amnesty International.
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There, she became the first foreign, and third female, President of the Cambridge Union.
At age 21 she met British journalist Henry Bernard Levin while on a panel for a quiz show.
At age 19, as a sophomore at Tennessee State University, Winfrey left school to start her media career.
However, she had a bumpy ride into fame after being fired from hosting the 6 p.m. "I had no idea what I was in for or that this was going to be the greatest growing period of my adult life," Winfrey told the Baltimore Sun.
However, while some famous icons knew what they wanted to do and achieved success early on, others took a longer, more twisted journey to get to that point.