Friday, November 24, 2006

Potter teasers galore (movie 5 and book 7)

All kinds of news, lately! I will assume you've watched the "Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix" trailer, seen the 10-minute HBO teaser, and the screenshots.

Today I read that the Guardian is having a contest for the most clever name for Book 7. I'll tell you mine if you tell me yours! The winner will get a bookplate autographed by JK Rowling. Aviso: You will have to register to submit your title.

And Lexicon Steve has posted his first report on his trip to Leavesden Studios this September. In case you hadn't heard, he got to tour the sets, watch filming and then interview Producer David Heyman and the movie's stars. Can you imagine? It must be torture to stay mum about it all.

Friday, November 10, 2006

Questions for Jo #4: Slytherin and monkeys

In Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets chapter 17, the statue of Salazar Slytherin is described as being "ancient and monkey-like." Why? This is such an odd break from the usual snake symbolism that Jo has used for Slytherin and the house he founded at Hogwarts. Should we be looking at folklore about monkeys?

Questions for Jo #3: Jo and her research methods

As I try to research things like Jo's statement about snake folklore, I often have an conversation with myself that goes something like this; "You're digging too deep. Jo wrote this in a cafe without internet access." "Yes, but she didn't carry research books with her either." "Perhaps she studied this in college and just has a really good memory."

Jo has only mentioned a few books by title as sources for information: Brewer's Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, Culpepper's Herbal, and the phonebook (for names). What else does she rely on for research? The library? Old books found in used bookstores? And does she research as she writes or is it already figured out? I'd love to know more about her research methods and how they feed her writing.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Information on Book 7 reorganized

The Accio Quote! page collecting JKR's statements about Book 7 was so long that I decided to organize it. Now it has sections for statements about characters, creatures, places, and Jo's comments about how the writing is going. I hope it is more useful now!

Saturday, November 04, 2006

Delightful new interview with J.K. Rowling now available

I love it when people send me long lost interviews! My deepest thanks to Trish Drasnin, because she sent me not only the video clips, but also a beautifully executed transcript of the July 8, 2000 interview that Stephen Fry did while he and Rowling were aboard the Hogwarts Express. This exchange made me giggle:

SF: Is there…. And I’ve heard stories of signing queues where there are sort of 17 boys dressed as Harry Potter and so on. Does that sort of worry you? Do you….
JKR: Am I warping a generation?
SF: Oh yes, are you afraid of the almost obsessive nature of the subject?
JKR: The funny thing is that I did always think that, if it ever did get published, it was a book for obsessives. I’m quite an obsessive person. I think you can probably tell.
SF: Yes.
JKR: And I did think if people liked it they would probably like it obsessively. I just never…. but I thought that it would be an obsessive few – I never guessed it would be an obsessive many, as has happened.