Tuesday, July 17, 2007
Having finished Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince yesterday (Tuesday), I'm feeling a little let down. Having a hard time getting into the book I'm currently reading. Thinking how much I like Harry Potter, and all his friends, and all their madcap adventures. So this Friday I'll get a brand-spanking new Harry Potter book to read, and the thought makes me positively giddy with excitement. And I just can't stop thinking: what would it be like to be J.K. Rowling? To know that GAZILLIONS of people know your name, and have read one or possibly all of your books. What would it be like to go from total obscurity to being the most famous author in the world in just ten years? How crazy is that? If you're an actor, a model, a musician, you're hoping for this type of recognition. But as a writer you're just looking to seeing your words on the page. You're hoping a few people other than your immediate family and closest friends might buy the book. I doubt very much that it would even cross your mind that you would outsell the Bible. I wonder when it hit her that she was, you know, REALLY famous? Was she walking down the street and someone recognized her? Was it when fanmail started coming in those large mailbags you imagine Santa Claus getting? Was it when Sorcerer's Stone hit its second YEAR on the NY Times Bestseller list? And what was her reaction? I like to imagine her dancing around in her jammies, shouting "Woo-hoo!" And then maybe eating ice cream for breakfast. That's what I would do, anyway. Thinking back, it really wasn't overnight success, either. (Which gives me hope for Dragon Slippers. Word of mouth, people, tell your friends!) Until Prisoner of Azkaban came out, they didn't number the books because the publisher still wasn't sure they would sell enough to make publishing the whole series worth their while. True story. My Sorcerer's Stone and Chamber of Secrets are unnumbered, and then suddenly on the spine of Azkaban there's a "Year 3" in a little box. (Yep, I've been a Harry fan since shortly after Year 2 came out.) I've also been thinking that I owe J.K. Rowling a great deal. For one thing, she's kept me entertained for countless hours. For another thing, because of her I have a publishing contract myself. If not for Harry Potter raking in the Galleons, Bloomsbury UK would never have expanded into the Wild West (or America, as it's sometimes known). Which means that they never would have offered a contract to little ol' me. So Shardas the Golden has a home thanks to Norbert the Norwegian Ridge-back. And now I really can't wait until Friday at midnight. I've even knitted myself a Gryffindor tie so that I can party Hogwarts style. (I was going to make matching kneesocks, but couldn't stand the thought of any more maroon and gold stripes.) I like to think I make a pretty good Ginny Weasley, what with the red hair and all.
Posted by Jessica Day George at 5:00 PM