Monday, July 9, 2007

Late HP Bloomer

You know when you've arrived as an author when you can say HP and people automatically know you're referring to Harry Potter, not Hewlett Packard.

Well, I'm a late bloomer. I read HP 1-3 straight through several years ago. They were nice stories for kids. Then I read #4 and thought it was a little too dark. When I read #5, I was disappointed because I kept waiting for something "big" to happen in such a long book. Nothing did.

I've seen the movies with my kids, but only several weeks after the intial release to avoid the massive crowds.

I haven't read #6, but it's not because I've avoided it. Just so many good books, so little time.

But . . . This past month, my daughter has been listening to the audio of HP #1, and despite my editor's antenna, I've really enjoyed the story. I'm starting to understand the craze, the obsession, although I wouldn't put myself in that category.

I actually feel excited when each new event happens, even though I know the outcome. I think what I've enjoyed the most is the excellent characterization. There has been a lot of criticism in writer's circles of the heavy adverb usage, the info dumping and some cliches. But once you relax the "rules" it's easy to get caught up in the story. It makes you appreciate the incredible creativity of Ms. Rowling.

This past week I read an article about how JK wrote the final pages of book 7 in a hotel room. And she cried uncontrollably. What struck me interesting was that she wrote in a hotel room in the first place. Maybe she's a mom? Ah, can I relate.

But the good news is: Even J.K. Rowling has to get away sometimes. :)


Tamra Norton said...

I got a call tonight on my cell while driving home from an SCBWI meeting. It was my 20 yr-old daughter and she was all a'buzz because she'd heard HP5 was showing at the midnight movies tonight (It's not released until TOMORROW at midnight). She drove down with a friend to pick up tickets only to find out it was a misprint. She must wait another 24 hours. Oh, the agony!!! :)

Julie Wright said...

I remember the day my husband brought homw the harry potter books as something fun to do as a family while we're in the car. I dismissed the notion until we started reading. I was hooked. And LOL! I love the fact that she wrote in a hotel room! Dang I wish I could do that sometimes.

Karlene said...

I'm an HP fan. I won't stand in line at midnight, but I do pre-order my books. And I bought 2 copies of #5 because I didn't want to wait my turn.

I hate it when people tell me (as their editor) that because JK Rowling broke so many of the "rules," they ought to be able to do so too. How dare I reject their manuscript when they've only done what she has done.

I try to ever so politely tell them that when their stories are as creative and fun as hers are, I'll let them break a few rules too. They don't seem to understand what I'm saying to them. Maybe I'm being too polite?

Heather B. Moore said...

Karlene, your rejections are justified. I reminds me of a quote from Arthur Levine that Julie Wright posted on her blog:

"People often ask me how I stay responsive to wonderful new manuscripts when I read so many every week, every day. The good news and the bad news is that
the really special ones stand out as distinctly as real flowers in a shop full of plastic imitations. And it's just like that really. The actual, living flower, has a smell. It isn't perfect, it's colors can be off a bit. But it's REAL and you know it. On the other hand, those plastic flowers
represent a syndrome that results in nine out ten of the rejections I write every week: let's call it

Michele Holmes said...

Heather, your cover is beautiful---as were the others. I can't wait to read it as a whole.

Anne Bradshaw said...

In England (until Harry P. came into its own), if anyone said HP, it meant sauce--brown and tangy HP Sauce is famous over there. Now I'm not so sure :-)