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What's with the name?

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and let it be known

J.K. Rowling to Write that Harry Potter Encyclopedia Everybody Asked For


The release of the final Harry Potter movie seemed like the end for many fans, but J.K. Rowling is apparently determined not to let it be so abrupt as all that. And though she’s currently working on a darkly comedic novel about the politics of small British towns, she’s also working on the project that’s been most frequently requested of her over the years: a Harry Potter encyclopedia.

With Pottermore finally ramping up to somewhere nearer fan expectations (I’ve been hearing many reports about the strange accuracy of its Sorting Hat all weekend), doubtless the feasibility of creating a HP encyclopedia has risen, due to Rowling churning out extra details for the site.

According to Yahoo, Rowling announced the details on her website in a FAQ section, though we’ve been unable to find the exact link. They quote her thusly:

For a long time I have been promising an encyclopaedia of Harry’s world, and I have started work on this now. Some of it forms the new content in Pottermore.

Then she reaffirmed, just for the record, that she has no current plans to write another novel set in the Harry Potter continuity, and that even if she did, she feels she’s wrapped up Harry’s story pretty well.

I wouldn’t hold my breath for the encyclopedia to release soon, however: Rowling’s still got a novel to finish by this fall, and it would be unreasonable to expect her to do serious work on another book in the meantime. In a related anecdote, I can’t find a link for it at the moment, but I seem to remember Rowling being quoted once as saying that she actually used fan-made wikis and online encyclopedias quite a bit while writing the Harry Potter series, simply to remember simple things like the last time she mentioned Padma Patil and whether she’d ever talked about Seamus’ eye color. Ironic, then, that she’s only making her own version of the ultimate Harry Potter database after she no longer needs it, for the fans that made the database she actually used.

(via Collider.)

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  • Frodo Baggins

    It’s a good thing she didn’t admit to using fan wikis until after she finished writing the books. Can you imagine the trolling that would occur if people knew she was relying on them for continuity?

    “Hey Harry, remember that time you and Padma did it in the Slytherin common room while Seamus looked on with his judging hot-pink eyes?” said Ron, flippantly.

  • http://www.facebook.com/jocelynplease Jocelyn Dugan

    I love HP, do not mistake me (I got sorted into Slytherin this weekend and now feel much more understanding of the House than I ever did reading the novels) but I feel like JK sort of prods at the fans (hints at character’s deaths, the whole gay Dumbledore thing) and I never really understood it. I appreciate the extra details but I don’t find it necessary. I also was so disappointed by the shit-storm that is Pottermore that I wouldn’t hold my breath for an Encyclopedia in the next 10 years.

  • Adam R. Charpentier

    “For a long time, I have been promising that I would find new ways to make money off of my most overzealous fans and soon the wait will be over.”

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/HTQID6HMOFYC6AJFN65GOT3LO4 L. B

    Hi, I was a Senior Editor to one of the large encyclopedia fansites and what I understand is that Cheryl Klein at Levine/Scholastic eventually created her own index for Rowling to use for continuity checking. Klein spoke about the process in several interviews published around the time the 6th book came out. It’s quite likely that Rowling did something similar for Pottermore and the book project.

    We do know that early on Rowling said she used the Lexicon to fact-check (she said so when she gave us her fansite award), and that large parts of the rest of the Potter industry rely heavily on the information compiled by fans. I really appreciate the defense of fan-created works, but wanted to point out the existence of Klein’s index.

  • amy thompson

    I really appreciate the defense of fan-created works, but wanted to point out the existence of Klein’s index.

    http://goo.gl/KMuIx