My Photo
Name:
Location: Vero Beach, Florida, United States

My name is Pat and I live in Florida. My skin will never be smooth again and my hair will never see color. I enjoy collecting autographs and playing in Paint Shop Pro.,along with reading and writing. Sometimes, I enjoy myself by doing volunteer "work" helping celebrities at autograph shows. I love animals and at one time I did volunteer work for Tippi Hedren's Shambala Preserve.

Friday, May 02, 2008

An Extra Post Because I Won't Be Here Tomorrow

I was reading my everyday blogs when I came to Pat's Fantasy Hotlist and today's post..

He directs us to an article by none other than Orson Scott Card. It relates to the J K Rowling lawsuit concerning Harry Potter. Uncle Orson Reviews Everything Orson Scott Card which was actually done on April 20, 2008


Basically, I know about this lawsuit but what he said got me thinking, which is always dangerous, and I did a little browsing on the web concerning the subject.

One of the first articles I came across an interesting comparison between Harry Potter and The Worst Witch written in 1974 found "here" ..

I continued to search around and came by this:

So What Aspects of "Harry Potter" are in the Public Domain?
Apparently, a lot of it was floating around for years before Rowling's book. The idea of a kid named Harry Potter, or something similar that is involved in magic has been floating around for years. She claims the ideas just pop into her head. Interestingly, she says she hopes she never finds out where she gets her ideas from. Maybe she means she hopes WE never find out where she gets her ideas from. She DID NOT INVENT THE HARRY POTTER CHARACTER anymore than Walt Disney created Cinderella. To prevent other authors from selling fictional books with the Harry Pottercharacter is a travesty.

and continuing on.....more articles found..

here..

here..

and here..

and even here!

Needless to say, if you want to search on yourself, you won't run out of links to click on for a while!

So, I'm interested in opinions on the subject...

On one hand I was so totally happy for Rowling to have come so far and become rich and famous for her books, and for getting kids to read again etc... all good stuff!

Then before the last book came out she said something that made me think "less" of her. It concerned the "reason" she was killing off characters, so no one could ever use her characters.

My feelings on that one was simple.. though I totally agree it would hurt like heck (and be unforgivable) for someone to steal your characters but, to me, her mistake was talking about it in such a way to the public. It's a known fact to any author to be protective of their story and characters.. but you don't come out sounding mean and vindictive to people when it hasn't even happened.

Point being.. it came across "wrong"..

"here you are my wonderful public that made me so rich and famous, and for this I will kill off loving characters because I don't want any of you awful people stealing them".. hello? never mind.. it just hit me totally wrong!

Now comes this lawsuit again Lexicon, who she openly backed up until now!.. again.. it seems "wrong".. and yes, to me, it's another thing making me not respect J K Rowling like I did when she was the underdog fighting for her writing and climbing the ladder.

I do believe, at times, money does change people. Maybe even more so when you had none and quickly become very wealthy and "powerful"... not sure if its a money thing or a power thing.. but I do believe this lady "J K Rowling".. has changed.. and not for the better. I just don't hold the same amount of respect that I had for her a few years ago.

... how about you? what do you think of all of this?? What do you think of J K Rowling now?

14 Comments:

Blogger Nymeth said...

I'm not quite sure what I think about this whole thing. I do find the lawsuit very unfortunate and I was disappointed in her.

As for the fact that her characters and the world she built is not completely originally...well, I think that's very much true, but only at the surface. The ideas of a orphaned hero, of a person being raised without having any idea about their origins and their power, of a school of magic, and of many other things we see in the books are certainly not new. I guess it could be said that some are archetypal ideas.

But then, her characters do have their own personalities, so I think it would be unfair to call them unoriginal. It's not so much the ideas but what one does with them that counts. And what she did with them was, in my opinion, unique. So in that sense I think that she did do a lot more than Disney did when adopting Cinderella.

But of course that none of this excuses the gigantic ball of drama that the lawsuit is turning out to be.

12:57 PM  
Blogger Ladytink_534 said...

I can't say I respect her either. She should have offered to collaborate with Lexicon instead of dragging it through the courts. She said so herself that she used the original website to check her facts when writing the books.
~~
TCM is a really great movie channel and website! They're showing High Society this month a few times in honor of Sinatra I think.

1:10 PM  
Blogger Chris said...

Here's my thing with JK...I'll always respect her for writing books that brought so many children back to reading and for being dedicated to those books and for putting her original ideas into them and creating her own world within them...we have to admit that she created the "world of Harry Potter" I mean, they're going to build a theme park in Universal Studios based on it...

However, she has certainly changed since getting all of this money and I think that she forgets that she'll always be remembered as the person who invented the Harry Potter series no matter who does what...and she'll always be rich no matter who does what...no one is going to take her books away from her and no one is taking her money away from her. I think she just got a bit power hungry along the way.

As for originality, there are no stories that are completely original. There is going to be some aspect, even if it is tiny, that will connect one story to another...mostly themes. For young adult fantasy stories, the themes are usually pretty similar, the hero(es) are usually similar, etc. I don't get on her too much about this. Why not stick with what you know kids like to read if you want them to read more?

1:15 PM  
Blogger Chris said...

OH, And have fun this weekend :)

1:46 PM  
Blogger DesLily said...

Nymeth: I agree that I do believe "there are just so many stories" and then they are told over and over in different ways with different characters. I am more interested in what you think of Rowling as to how she seems to be treating others now.?

Ladytink: JK gave her approval of the website many times.. so it makes no sense to me. I had to laugh in one of the links i had found that she said it wasn't over the money, but that the money from HER book was/ is to be for charity and this book Lexicon did will take away from those profits for charity.. I laugh because she is so freeking rich now she could make up the difference by actually donating some of her own money! duh!


Chris: I will always give her credit for getting where she is. And I will always give her credit to getting kids to read more.
I just find I feel badly now... some things she said at news releases sounding like she thought that people would steal her ideas and characters.. well duh.. yeah its done by some, called plagerism and prosicuted, but i felt as if it was directed at "me as a fan".. and that's not a good thing.. and the lawsuit is not too swift..
did you read the article by Orson Scott??.. I would bet he's not the only author that feels that way!

4:19 PM  
Blogger Chris said...

Haha! I just went and read the Uncle Orson column and I love it! I used to read it every single week and since I haven't had computer access I've fallen away from it. In fact, it used to be set as my homepage. I love his review column. He makes some great points and it really is disappointing that she has turned this onto her fans...such a shame.

10:16 PM  
Blogger cj said...

The way I feel about JKR hasn't changed in the least because of this lawsuit.

A website is one thing; published works are another. I wouldn't want anyone to profit from the years of work I put into my characters and stories by publishing their own book based on those ideas. A website is a totally different thing. Besides, she's working on her own lexicon and she wants to protect that. I have no problem with her doing so.

Also, Agatha Christie wrote books where she killed of Miss Marple and Hercule Poirot to be published after she died to keep anyone from stealing them. I have no problem with that, either.

It seems silly to me that people expect JKR to be okay with what the publisher and author are trying to do simply because she's gotten rich off her hard work. They're trying to make a buck off someone else's efforts. That's what I have a problem with.

cjh

1:21 AM  
Blogger Pamela said...

I didn't know what I thought until I read your post.

I think you are correct.

She's becoming her own vision of "he who cannot be named."

There are lots of wizard and witches (writers) out there -- she can't keep the power from them.

1:30 AM  
Blogger DesLily said...

cj: of course I can see where she wouldn't want someone else publishing anything about her work and of course i can see her killing off characters.. what "I" can't see is how she's treating people.. when she mentions killing off characters she tells her public (who are the ones who made her famous) I'm doing this so none of You can steal my characters... you don't accuse people who haven't done anything! Even if it is tried later in life you stand there accusing people before a crime has happened..you don't treat your "fans' that way! And the lawsuit is no different..she is rich enough to take care of "any problem" without making a major issue of it out to the fans again.. Even the "dumbledor is gay" bit.. is a ploy to keep her face and name in the papers..

6:56 AM  
Blogger Nymeth said...

Deslily, you summed up the way I feel about it perfectly with this paragraph:

"My feelings on that one was simple.. though I totally agree it would hurt like heck (and be unforgivable) for someone to steal your characters but, to me, her mistake was talking about it in such a way to the public. It's a known fact to any author to be protective of their story and characters.. but you don't come out sounding mean and vindictive to people when it hasn't even happened."

It's not the fact that she wanted to project her work that disappointed me, but the fact that she was so unnecessarily cruel to someone who clearly worshipped her worth and meant no harm.

10:25 AM  
Blogger animewookie said...

Wow! This is a tough one. I think that when you're trying to protect something you've invested so much of yourself into, your vision may become clouded. It's like a dog trying to protect their bone. Weather it's another dog around them, (who is truly a threat), or a simple passer-by, (who is obviously not a threat), their going to get bit, either way. I can't judge her to harshly. She's done a lot of good. It may just take her some time to balance everything, and make the right choices, for the right reasons.

10:35 AM  
Blogger cj said...

Well, I believe she tried to go the non-public route with the lawsuit at first. The publisher, who I believe is a small company looking for a major cash cow with this book located here in Michigan, decided they didn't have to play by the rules.

And the stealing character thing - if not for fan fiction and websites, it wouldn't be the issue it is these days. In Agatha Christie's days she didn't need to announce what she was doing because no one would've tried to steal her characters and publish a book until after she was gone. Now, fan fiction is all over the net and some of it is truly dreadful. Besides, she didn't kill Harry, Hermoine, or Ron off which I think I might've done...

Anyway, it's an interesting issue with unforeseen consequences, I think.

You always bring up interesting topics, Deslily.

Oh, and btw, I've tagged you for the 6 random things about me meme and I think any random fact about you is bound to be fascinating!

cjh

2:00 PM  
Blogger Kim L said...

I really don't have too much respect for Rowling after reading what the lawsuit was about. She is already richer than plenty of celebrities, what on earth more could she possibly want? Plus, there are tons and tons of HP companion guides out there already. I think it's because she wanted to do a HP encyclopedia herself. But people will still buy her encyclopedia no matter what because no one else is JK Rowling. Plus I'm sure she'll give more backstories to some of the minor characters, which HP fans will want to buy.

It really is a shame, because she is just hurting herself and making herself look greedy and mean with this lawsuit. I still like her books, but I don't like what she's doing.

12:42 AM  
Blogger Carl V. said...

I'm certainly not a J.K. Rowling fan (I do find her very cute in that picture though). How can I be? I've never read a word of her fiction. I'm not a hater either although what little respect I might have had for her is dwindling. Whether she deliberately borrowed ideas is all a matter of speculation. That her ideas aren't original is true, but that is true for all authors to some extent. The fact is that if she was a very prolific reader she could have tucked away all kinds of ideas in her mind with no clue in the end where they all came from. She should be less rigid about defending her originality, but I am willing to cut her slack for that.

I am not willing to cut her slack for this lawsuit which is just crazy. I much prefer the attitude and behavior of Neil Gaiman when it comes to his creations, copyright, etc. He is wise and comports himself both wisely and generously. I think this whole thing is silly and that she is putting herself in a bad light by pursuing this.

Great article by Card, very fun to read. I agree mostly with his thoughts though I don't have the same level of venom towards Rowling, again, because I haven't really participated in the phenomenon. I do agree that she should have made her character gay in the books if this was what she was wanting to do. By making some statement afterwards she alienates gay and straight people for various reasons and it all seems like an attention getting stunt.

I'll be glad when this lawsuit is over and hopefully won't have to hear any more about her until she redirects her energy towards writing another book.

Lastly, like Chris I give her and her publishers high praise for re-igniting the love of reading in kids and the love of shared reading amongst families. For that she certainly deserves proper credit.

2:35 PM  

Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home