Tag Archives: J.K. Rowling

Harry Potter: A History of Magic Review

Harry Potter is a literary phenomenon. J.K. Rowling‘s books about the boy who lived has inspired an entire generation to love reading and believe in the power of magic.

Harry Potter: A History of Magic opened at the New York Historical Society on October 5th.

The exhibit tells both the story of Rowling’s writing process and the myths that inspired her as she wrote the novels. Containing historical artifacts, original art and pieces of the pre-publishing manuscript, the exhibit is a new spin the story that we all know and love.

I am not a huge Potterhead, but I loved this exhibit. It is engaging, fascinating, but most of all, it is incredible fun. As a writer, I enjoyed it because her process of writing was no different from any other writer’s. It inspired and reminded me that good writing is hard work and hard work hopefully leads to professional success.

I absolutely recommend it.

Harry Potter: A History of Magic will be at the New York Historical Society (170 Central Park West, New York, NY 10024) until January 27th, 2019. Check the website for ticket prices and museum hours. 

 

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Thoughts On the 20th Anniversary Of The Publishing Of Harry Potter And The Sorcerers Stone

20 years ago, an unknown author named J.K. Rowling published her first novel: Harry Potter And The Sorcerers Stone.

At the time, Rowling had what appeared to be three strikes against her: she was a single mother, she was unemployed and she was living under the black cloud of depression. Writing was the only thing that saved her sanity. Little did she know that her first novel would lead to the career that many writers can only dream of.

That one book produced 6 sequels, multiple movies, a theme park and since then, the world of Harry Potter has become iconic. Children all over the world have clamored to read not just the Harry Potter book series, but other books.

I bet the publishers who passed on the first Harry Potter book are kicking themselves.

The thing that for me, makes Harry Potter stand out is not the magic, but how ordinary his experiences are. Growing up, dealing with bullies, having that first crush, that first kiss, etc, dealing with the b*llsh*t that life throws your way, etc. He went through all of that and survived.

If he can survive that, we all can.

Thanks J.K. Rowling for introducing the world to Harry Potter. I can’t imagine it without him.

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Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them Movie Review

A prequel or a sequel to a beloved series has to be done right. While exploring new territory with new characters and new narratives, it must also weave in the narrative and characters that fans know and adore.

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them is a prequel to the Harry Potter series. Set in 1926 New York, Newt Scamander (Eddie Redmayne) is carrying what appears to be an ordinary suitcase. But it is far from ordinary. When the creatures inside the suitcase escape and nearly destroy New York City, Newt must work with sisters Tina and Queenie Goldstein (Katherine Waterstone and Alison Sudol) and no-mag (i.e. muggle) Jacob Kowalski (Dan Fogler) to get them back.

Before I go any farther I must say that I have not yet read the book, so this review is based solely on the movie. The thing that I enjoy and appreciate, both as an audience member and a writer is that J.K. Rowling understands how to write for movie audiences. The reason her books are so well-beloved and the movies are equally beloved is that the characters and the narrative come first, before any special effects. Of course, they are eye-popping, but she knows how to write a good story first and foremost. That is the key to this movie’s success.

I recommend it.

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them
is presently in theaters.

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