Three Questions for JKR Q&A Tomorrow

I am not sure what Rowling, Inc., means by “interactive” but it suggests there is a possibility that The Presence will be taking questions from her listening audience. If true, this would be a first-time-ever event for the Strike series and something Rowling has only done before during Potter-Mania, something she did with children readers.

Except one event. The last time she answered questions from a live audience of adults (rather than from pre-screened cards), if memory serves, was in Carnegie Hall, the night she revealed she had always “thought of Dumbledore as gay.” I’m pretty sure that’s not the sort of publicity she’s hoping to generate for Ink Black Heart through her “interactive” Q&A.

Given the number of Rowling Revilers in the world today, too, that would attempt an ambush of her in any “interactive” environment, I have to doubt that her handlers, being sane, would expose her to this credible danger. If it is a live Q&A, though, and you could get through to ask her one question about Ink Black Heart — and it has to be about Strike6, remember, nothing about her A-Levels reading list, protestors in Iran, or The Christmas Pig diamond earrings — what would you ask her?

I share three ‘off-the-top-of-my-head’ questions after the jump and hope you’ll write yours in the comment boxes. Who knows? Maybe Team Rowling will choose one or two questions from Serious Strikers for a change!

Three Ink Black Heart Questions for ‘Robert Galbraith:’

(1) Part of the background scenery during Robin and Strike’s birthday drinks at the Ritz in Ink Black Heart’s first chapter is a painting of the mythological Leda and the Swan. Is this myth and another, the one Jungian psychologists like Strike’s half-sister love, ‘Cupid and Psyche,’ something we’re seeing re-invented in the Cormoran Strike series?

(2) Oxford University Research Fellow Beatrice Groves and the University of Dallas’ Evan Willis have both written about Ink Black Heart’s remarkable parallels with Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince. Will you confirm or deny whether these echoes between the sixth books of both series was intentional on your part?

(3) Assuming you read reviews and criticism of your books, even if it just the first rushes post-publication, are there any that you felt were especially insightful? Ink Black Heart presents a not especially flattering view of fandoms, especially online communities; are there any web sites devoted to discussion and exegesis of your work that you follow or can recommend to readers?

The second part of that last question, of course, is a shameless request for a Gold Plated Endorsement of I am obliged to assume that, given her experience with the Harry Potter Lexicon after giving them an award,  Rowling will not be praising any online mavens anytime ever again, and, if she does deign to shine her light on a Serious Striker site, will choose one that doesn’t delight in posting a ‘Gaffes’ list for readers to share all the mistakes she made and her editors missed. Still, I feel obliged to try.

What question would you ask Rowling about Ink Black Heart if you found the Golden Ticket in your Willie Wonka Chocolate Bar? Please share it in the comment boxes below!

Post-post: Did you think what I did when I saw this tweet?

I was disappointed Half-Blood Prince was not number 2 on this list!


  1. I assume she must have done some undercover research posing as a fan on Mugglenet or even a.f.h-p. If so was she merely a lurker or did she get chatty innthe comments and posts? How much of a fan alter ego has she fleshed out?

  2. My main question would be: What are some specific online shows or games that influenced your creation of The Ink Black Heart? I’ve sensed a bit of Slenderman in the ways that some fans go violent – but nothing directly matches one real-life phenomenon.

  3. Louise Freeman says

    I think you can guess mine:

    Were all the events in The Ink Black Heart originally planned for Book 6? Were any originally planned for Book 5 and then flipped?

  4. It’s a great question, but no way does she ‘go there,’ alas.

  5. Here’s the two linked questions I’d ask.

    Ma’am, are you at all familiar with the phrase “Men without Chests”? It’s just something I picked up in an old book a long time ago. There’s a lot of heady stuff behind it, and most of it seems to have been forgotten nowadays. Yet what’s so striking about it (if you will) is just how much that phrase seems to be a perfect match for the idea of Anomie that you elucidate in the pages of your new “Strike Mystery”. I almost want to hazard a guess, and claim that while the idea of a “Chestless” personality might not stand quite as close to being anything like an “over-arching message”, it does seem to be a good candidate for the main, allegorical crux, or theme of your most recent volume. Does any of this, in fact, actually apply to your novel, in any way, shape or form? Or does the question even make sense?

    What do you suppose the future of fandom in particular, or practical/and or cultural literacy in general, will be, at this late date? Sorry if I went too broad with the subject there. It’s just that based on your latest book, you do seem to have a lot of thoughts about the state of the long-time relations between authors, or artists, and their audience. I’ll have to flat out admit I’d be most eager to hear you say more about this whole topic. In particular, I’d really wish to know what you think this increasing current of hostility means for the way people both create art, and how audiences will or won’t take it all in. Again, like I say, apologies if this last question was a clear-cut case of someone asking to much. Thank you.