For the first time in years, J.K. Rowling is hosting a webcast to talk about the world of Harry Potter.
You can watch the webcast right here at the new Harry Potter Reading Club’s website. An education tool, the Harry Potter Reading Club provides educators with the resources they need to start a Harry Potter book club. These resources include discussion guides, monthly activities, and more. The webcast is part of the launch of the Club.
UPDATE: The webcast has ended but you will be able to watch a replay on the Harry Potter Reading Club’s website shortly. It will also be available for viewing next week on the Pottermore Insider.
Here are some of the highlights from the webcast:
- On Edinburgh: Jo says some things in the books wouldn’t have happened without living in the town. Names and street names came out of the books. The town also has great coffee shops and is respectful of her privacy.
- Jo got Gilderoy’s surname from a graveyard in Edinburgh
- Jo says that she had several teachers over the years that encouraged her to write.
- One of Jo’s favorite moments from the books was Luna’s appearance, the Graveyard scene in Goblet of Fire, and some small moments: “stupid jingles that Peeves says” were fun to do.
- The second American tour Jo did was “unbelievable” – she can remember traveling in a car towards her first signing and there were blocks of people queuing. She thought a sale was going on, but they were actually in line for Jo.
- The first sentence she wrote of Harry Potter had something to do with Dark’s Hollow, which became Godric’s Hollow. She says of the first sentence, “So you saw what happened in Godric’s Hollow very early in the series, unlike how it turned out, where you see the story at the end of the series” (paraphrasing)
- She read from Chapter 5 of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, Diagon Alley. She wrote the passage under a tree in a park.
- One of my favorite ever comments from a very early reader, in 1999, about 10 years old, he said to me: “Harry doesn’t often ever know what’s going on, and nor do I.” That reader was semi-joking, but he meant it at the same time. We all had the feeling of, ‘I’m not sure what’s going on.’ We all felt that at school.”
- On Pottermore: “The initial idea was, it’s time. People were asking for eBooks. It felt like it was the right time to do it. Then I wanted it to be more than that, because as you say, the internet offers amazing possibilities. I saw it as a way to create an environment where you could see extra tidbits, we can go inside illustrations. It’s making a book – it’s putting a book in that world. It’s still a reading experience – you still need to be able to read the books. But I was excited that we could put a really good reading experience online. I think it’s important to say that this is completely free. But the REALLY exciting thing for me – again, for free – is I had a way to put extra material online. It was a way of making sure any fan could access it. If I loved a series of books, to be able to learn more about a character – it’d be a great experience.”
- Jo wrote a full biography of Remus Lupin which made her very emotional. Presumably we will see this in Prisoner of Azkaban
- They showed an exclusive preview of Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban on Pottermore – check it out below:
- Jo revealed that she has taken her own Sorting Questionnaire on Pottermore, and got sorted into Gryffindor
- Jessica Rowling told her mother, “I think everyone should want to be in Hufflepuff.”
- Jo revealed that her favorite house is not Gryffindor, but Hufflepuff!
- Once again, Jo hesitantly says that her next book will be for children.