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Harry Potter: Beyond the Page

Harry Potter: Beyond the Page,[1] also known as simply the J.K. Rowling Webcast, was an 11 October 2012 webcast from Harry Potter series author J. K. Rowling's hometown of Edinburgh, Scotland featuring a live interview with her. The 50:43 webcast was simulcast in classrooms around the world and was later made available for free viewing at both the Bloomsbury Harry Potter website and the Scholastic Potter website at a speed of up to 500K. The interview promoted the Harry Potter Reading Club and Pottermore.

In the interview, Rowling revealed that she was sorted into Gryffindor on Pottermore and that her next project is targeted at younger readers. She also read an excerpt from the Diagon Alley sequence in Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone. Towards the end of the interview, she mentioned The Casual Vacancy and stated that her next project is "most likely" one for younger children, but she didn't want to commit herself in case someone were to accuse her of going back on her word later.

Other new information

  • Rowling came up with Gilderoy Lockhart's surname by observing it in a church in Edinburgh.[2]
  • Rowling considers Ron a bit more "real" than Hermione in terms having character flaws and his own emotional journey. She was aware that this would be an issue from the start. Hermione was brought to bring Harry something he needed, given his lack of knowledge about the magical world, but she too goes on a journey by learning there is more to life than book learning. Harry Potter was a character who was someone "detached" (having been raised in the Muggle world) and thus able to be a "questing" character. Much of Ron's humour is humour of the type that Rowling most enjoys.
  • Rowling initially created Pottermore because she felt it was the right time after hearing so many requests for e-books. She then decided that she wanted it to be more, leading to the decision to include "extra tidbits" and put the books in the "world" of the Internet. She noted that there is a large amount available completely for free, including some material that was invented purely for Pottermore and not simply part of her original notes.
  • One of the things Rowling was most excited about in regards to Pottermore was creating the Sorting Hat quiz, as she feels there are many "pale imitations" online.
  • Rowling feels like she's "never left" the Potter story.
  • As of the interview, Rowling had recently completed writing a full biography for Remus Lupin for Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban on Pottermore and found herself getting very upset.
  • The interview revealed an exclusive Pottermore illustration from the Knight Bus.
  • Rowling is on Pottermore as a regular user, but will not provide her username. She knew how the Sorting Hat quiz works and answered the questions completely honestly, knowing that a couple of her answers might not result in a Gryffindor result, but was Sorted into Gryffindor anyway. Asked about those who were disappointed about being Sorted into Hufflepuff, she feels that in many, many ways, Hufflepuff is her favourite House. She feels this because the House "virtually to a person" remained for the Battle of Hogwarts, not staying to show off or being reckless, but because this was the "essence of Hufflepuff House." Her daughter stated to her "I think we should all want to be Hufflepuffs" and that she would not have been at all disappointed to have been Sorted into this House.
  • Gryffindor has turned out the odd Dark Wizard; Hufflepuff is "virtually clean" in that regard.
  • Favourites: Favourite colour - pink, favourite food - sushi, least favourite food - tripe, favourite sound - the sea, or her husband snoring, least favourite sound - her husband snoring when she wants to go to sleep, favourite sport - Quidditch, favourite thing to do when she's not working - take her kids out somewhere fun, drawing, listening to music, cooking/baking, quality she most admires in a person - bravery, "If I wasn't a writer, I would be... depressed. There's just nothing else." If she had to choose between writing and her children, she would choose them, but she would be "very grumpy."
  • Rowling most hopes that readers would take away from the Potter books the knowledge that there is somewhere that you can go and be happy.

Notes and references

  1. NeoGAF
  2. Harry Potter Reading Club live webchat, 11 October 2012 (source here)
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