The Harry Potter Lexicon Debate

ZoeRose, longtime HogPro AllPro, has weighed in on her Harry Potter weblog, Shell Cottage, about the The Harry Potter Lexicon controversy and lawsuit. As you may know, Steve Vander Ark and I have been friends and correspondents since 2003. I haven’t asked and he hasn’t told me anything about the lawsuit (and I haven’t heard from him in months). My several friends who labor at The Lexicon are also under the Cone of Silence.

The policy here has been and continues to be: [Read more…]

Mythopoeic Award 7 Book Challenge for 2008

What a weekend! Mary and I taught our Friday evening/all day Saturday, three classes, meals and cooking classes “Way of Communion” seminar at the Episcopal Church of the Mediator here in Allentown. I really enjoy writing and talking with friends about Harry Potter, but I live to eat and talk about good food and eating as an extension of the Eucharist. It was a delight and enlightening, as always (and I think the folks who joined us got a lot out of it, too).

Anyway, prepping for that intensive course left us pretty light on posts here last week. I’ll try to catch up this week, which, except for a trip to New Haven to talk at Yale Divinity School on Wednesday, is a “stay-at-home-and-update-Unlocking” week.

I’ve read about a fascinating Reading Challenge on Dr. Sturgis’ site, at Sword of Gryffindor, even at its point of origin. Let me add my voice to this chorus of thoughtful readers recommending the Mythopoeic Award Challenge for calendar year 2008. Simply choose seven titles from the Mythopoeic Society’s list of Award winners and read them all by midnight 31 December. There’s an edifying, mid-February not-quite-so-New-Year’s resolution.

I ask for your recommendations to put on my list or thoughts about the books you’d like to read. And be sure to tune in to Dr. Sturgis’ interviews this month! The first one is tomorrow…

Writers Strike Over! Good News for Janet?

The Writers Strike is Over! Hurrah!

Why do I care, teevee and movie know-nothing-and-care-less kind of curmudgeon that I am? Because Janet Batchler, beloved HogPro AllPro and author of What Will Harry Do?, has been on the picket-line for months. There is no word yet at Quoth The Maven blogspot about what she thinks of the deal; I hope she’ll check in here and let us know if the good guys won or were just worked over.

Ms. Rowling Interview in El Pais (2/2008)

Readers in Spain have their copies of Deathly Hallows today — and an intriguing interview with Ms. Rowling in El Pais magazine, to boot. SnitchSeeker has the first “complete transcript translation” I’ve been sent [hat-tip, Bob Trexler!], but, alas, we know it isn’t complete because in previous reports on this interview from the same source we read about her comments on Neville Chamberlain as a model for Cornelius Fudge and about her ex-husband not being in the books (I tell you, the guy in lavendar is Philip Pullman…). And those notes aren’t in the “complete transcript.” Nothing yet at our best source for JKR interviews; if you didn’t think the quiet demise of Accio Quote was going to be painful, this is your moment to reflect and reconsider.

Two quick comments on what we have in this interview and my favorite parts before opening the gates for your comments about your favorites: [Read more…]

J.K. Rowling, Margaret Thatcher both “Great Britons” So Says Morgan Stanley [JAB]

Thanks to our friends at we discover that J.K. Rowling has pulled double honors in winning both the Overall and Arts catagories of the Morgan Stanley Great Britons Awards for 2007.

According to the article in, Ms. Rowling qualified for double honors because:

A publishing phenomenon, JK Rowling has changed reading habits and patterns worldwide. The success of the Harry Potter books – the final novel in the series sold 11 million copies in its first 24 hours – has united a generation of children and parents in a genuine love of reading.

The judges felt Miss Rowling had transformed the world’s view of Britain and that her books are “brilliantly British”. That she also managed to top the best-seller list in France with Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, the first English-language author to do so, is a further testament to her global appeal.

[Read more…]