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JK Rowling and Author Interviews

Are you a fan of the Harry Potter series? I am. In fact, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix marked a return to my love of reading. I devoured these books. I loved every page, even when the bad stuff happened (NO!!!! NOT DUMBLEDORE!!!!)

This past week, JK Rowling, author of this epic series, earned ire from many of her fans for confessing that she wasn’t happy with Ron and Hermione getting together in the end.

That’s an interesting rub. Ms. Rowling was being honest. We (authors) all have things we regret in our tales. Sometimes we can change them, sometimes we can’t. For example, in By the Fates, Freed, I cut an amazing scene between Ealasaid’s mother and father. It didn’t really fit in the story, which is why it no longer exists in the book. I *can* fix this. I’m working on fixing it. In fact, I’m including it in a short story that’s going to be a prequel to By the Fates, Freed. I can fix this easily.

But not all mistakes can be fixed. For example, I couldn’t give Ealasaid a boyfriend in her youth. Not with how the story’s written. (Don’t worry, I never wanted to.)

There’s a great post on authors and social media by Rachel in the OC. She advocates not discussing politics and religion in your social media channels lest you offend some of your fans. This is smart advice. Unless you’re writing about politics or religion, it probably doesn’t belong in your social media feed. I’d go one further. I’d say that you also have to be careful discussing regrets. Building a brand and an audience is one of the most important tasks authors must undertake (right after writing something that’s worth reading) and you don’t want to destroy that audience with one single tweet, post, or interview.

Now, I can’t tell whether Ms. Rowling’s admission is going to hurt sales of the Harry Potter series or any of her other books. Perhaps it will even help. After all, we’re all talking about it, right? Folks who haven’t thought about the Harry Potter books in ages are suddenly reminded of the story and perhaps they’ll buy new copies or read the books again.

I guess the real lesson here is…think before you speak and be prepared for the consequences.

 

 

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