Thursday, February 07, 2008

The Great Defender . . .

Maybe it's because I adore her books. Maybe it is because she is so cool under pressure. Maybe it's because I think we would maybe actually get along really well and I would love someday to go for coffee with her in a very civilised absolutely non-stalkery way.

But I feel a need to be JK Rowling's great defender.

Not that she needs my help, of course, she can more than take care of herself.

Still, I get a bit sick and tired when I read in various different locations (blogs, articles, forums), that all JK Rowling is interested in is the publicity and the money. People said this when she announced Dumbledore was gay. People said this when she made those seven books (oh, and gave away six of them, auctioning off only the last, you know, for charity, but whatever). People say this as a general rule, as if J K Rowling sat down one day and decided to be an author to make the big bucks.

And it gets me . . . grr.

First of all. Anyone who has seen any interview with JK Rowling knows that she is a writer through and through. All she has ever been since she was little was an author. It's so obvious how passionate she is about writing, that even if you don't like her work, you simply can't deny she loves what she does.


EVEN if let's say she was doing this for the money (uh . . .right . . . because there isn't any easier way out there to make money than writing books), there is no way on this green earth that she could have predicted the kind of success she was to get. Because the kind of success she's had? Has never happened to any other author ever.

Yes Dan Brown, very successful. Yes Mr. Grisham does splendidly. But the attention, the money, the world wide phenomena, the awesome parties, the changing the nature of an entire genre (by which I mean demonstrating to publishers that writing for children is indeed a viable market, and making said market one of the hottest of all markets right now)? That distinction belongs to JK Rowling, and JK Rowling alone.

And if she could have predicted all that . . . well then I think the ability to see so clearly into the future itself is a pretty admirable thing, and she still deserves accolades.

So yes, as you can see, I am quite obviously JK Rowling's great defender.

Or so I thought.

Until I found this article, and I realised that of course there is one out there who has always been in her corner, who has always been supportive of her books. He has written many an article about her, but this one I think is just brilliant. Forgive me if any of you have already read it. I am often late to the game. But it's a good'un, and really shares just how impressive a thing JK Rowling has done.

May I present to you the true bearer of the great defender title: a one, Mr. Stephen King.


Doug A Scott said...

Nice article. Thanks for posting the link.

A good on-line friend and I are very much split on the last book (the last couple of books, really). I really enjoyed it and was very happy with the ending and she, well, she loathed the last couple of books. Loathed, and it's no exaggeration. We've pretty much agreed to disagree on it, as it's extremely unlikely either of us will convert the other. But if I do feel the need to defend JK, at least I've got Mr. King doing a much better job at it, and I will free quote him. :-)

(The fact that his few criticisms match my own helps. Those tent scenes were getting a wee bit tiresome.)

Merewald said...

It always annoys me when someone claims JK's just in it for the publicity. I don't believe it for a second. Excellent post, and great article by King.

Heidi the Hick said...

I agree with you, and thanks for the link to Professor King's article!

Adrienne said...

Glad you guys agree and like the post (and the King article, I think it's really interesting). I know she doesn't need my help, but I feel very strongly about this subject.

Some people claim that they hate Harry Potter because it's so popular, it's just a mob mentality sort of thing that anyone reads her books. But I also see an element of mob mentality in the haters. Why on earth would anyone think JK Rowling was just looking for more money and publicity? Like I said already, if these people had seen any single one of her interviews, they know this wasn't so. There is simply no way to draw that conclusion from the evidence. Therefore, to me, the only explanation is that these people are just jumping on the Hating JK Rolwing bandwagon. What's more mob than that?

merewald said...

I think most of them hate it just because it's popular, which is sad.
And you're right, if they'd read any of her interviews they'd know how passionate about her work she is - she's spent so much time putting together the books, creating a detailed and complex world - and characters that are real and loveable, and you can tell she's so serious about it.

It's just not the type of person who'd be in it for fame and fortune.

Not to me, anyway.

Mary said...

If JK Rowling was greedy for publicity and money, I doubt she would have taken time to establish a charitable trust, and do so much to help single mothers.

Actions speak louder than words. (Except when writing a novel! ;))