R.I.P. Alan Rickman

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This morning I woke up to the news that Alan Rickman had passed away.

Now, fourteen days into 2016 and the world has been hit by one celebrity death after another. Everyone is affected differently and everyone is hit differently.

This one hit me hard.

Alan Rickman was a major part of my childhood. He was Professor Snape. He is Professor Snape.

He brought to life this character we hated and loved and loved to hate and hated to love. He delivered some of the most iconic lines in Harry Potter and delivered them in a way (and at a pace) that we will never forget.

Alan Rickman was a brilliant actor in everything he did. My heart goes out to his friends, his family, and his fans who are feeling this loss today.

Thank you Alan Rickman, for all the work you did over the years and for giving us the best Professor Snape there ever could have been.

You will be remembered. Always.

R.I.P.

Featured Author: J.K. Rowling

J.K. RowlingThis is something new I’m going to try on this blog, a featured author. I’ll be doing this every month with a new author and just talking a bit about them and their work. Why? Because I love reading posts like these so I decided to try my hand at writing them.

To kick things off I thought I would start with my favourite author: J.K. Rowling!

Even if you haven’t read one of her books you probably know who J.K. Rowling is. At the very least you’ve heard her name. But who is she? Where did she get her start?

Well, the basic information is this:

Joanne ‘Jo’ Rowling was born on July 31, 1965 (The same day as Harry Potter) in Yate, Gloucestershire, England. Her father was an aircraft engineer, her mother a science technician, and she has one younger sister, Dianne.

She started writing from a young age and in 1990 dreamed up the idea of a young wizard boy on a train ride to London. Rowling taught English for a period of time in Portugal in night classes and wrote during the day.

She has three children: Jessica (with her first husband), David, and Mackenzie (with husband, Neil Murray).

Rowling used a lot of real life influences while writing Harry Potter. The death of her mother greatly influenced how she wrote Harry’s feelings towards the loss of his parents. Not only that, but for a period of time Rowling was clinically depressed and it was this period that inspired the dementors.

Harry Potter was rejected by twelve publishing houses when she first sent it out, but was eventually published in 1997 by Bloomsbury. Despite the initial reaction, it seems there’s a good chance J.K. Rowling already knew how the entire series would end as it’s been said (meaning I’ve read on the internet and seen in interviews, but can’t find the sources right now) that she knew there would be seven books and had already written the end of the seventh.

Harry Potter isn’t her only work. Since the series finished she’s written The Casual Vacancy (I have, but haven’t read yet) and has written other novels under the name “Robert Galbraith”.

But this is all just the basic stuff. What you might not know is that J.K. Rowling is the Twitter Queen. Or that she is a sassmaster and actively engages in debates about things she cares about online.

Seriously, if you don’t follow J.K. Rowling on Twitter you are missing out.

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This is just one of the little gems you will find if you follow her. Not only that, but you’ll also be able to see the humorous and wonderful interactions with the Harry Potter cast. Her tweet to Matthew Lewis when he did some scantily clad photos was particularly wonderful.

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She has had a major influence on many people. One individual in particular was Evanna Lynch (Luna Lovegood). Lynch wrote to Rowling and told her about her struggles with her eating disorder and Rowling encouraging words back assisted in Lynch finding the strength to not only fight back, but audition and get a role in the film series.

J.K. Rowling has also been a huge influence on me. I’ve never met her (one day), but I can say completely, 100% that I would not be the same person I am today. Not only is Harry Potter a major part of my life, but she’s a big reason why I started writing. Who knows where I’d be if it weren’t for her.

So this was my first Featured Author post. I’m liking the idea, but I may try and change it up a bit in future. Unfortunately I don’t know any of the authors I’m talking about so most of my information has to come from the Internet or my other thoughts. Who knows, maybe one day I’ll be able to talk to one of the people I’m talking about. Maybe I’ll interview one of them for this blog.

The possibilities are endless.

Let me know what you thought and what you’d like to see in future for these

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Happy Birthday J.K. Rowling!

J.K. Rowling

Happy birthday J.K. Rowling! Thank you for creating Harry Potter. It truly changed my life and I can’t imagine where I would be today without it.

Also, a big happy birthday to Harry Potter! Apparently he’s 35 and I’m not quite sure how that happened, but here we are!

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Happy Birthday JK Rowling!!

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I would like to wish a very happy birthday to JK Rowling and Harry Potter!

When I first read Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone I had no idea how much it would impact my life. I had no idea how much of an influence it would have on me.

It is now 2014 and I am pursuing my own writing career. A big reason for this is the influence Harry Potter had on me and I realized just how powerful a book could be. I always loved reading before, but it was then that I fully understood just what words could do and realized I wanted to do the same thing. I wanted to write something that could impact someone in the way JK Rowling’s writing impacted me.

By the time I finished reading the final book I had made a connection with the characters. I had found a second home at Hogwarts. The characters were like family and when one of them was lost I felt it like they were real. When the seventh novel was over, I will admit I cried. For a long time. I couldn’t believe it was all over. I couldn’t believe there wouldn’t be a new story to wait for. But even with the books finished, Hogwarts was still home and the characters were still family.

To this day I reread the books and rewatch the films and it’s like a new experience all over again. Harry Potter is still influencing my life in ways I never could have imagined. JK Rowling is still the biggest influence on my writing. I will be forever thankful to what she has done for me and for so many others. She made characters who are so different that there is always someone you can relate to; she made a home for people who felt alone. Whenever I have a bad day, I find sitting down and reading Harry Potter can always make it better. I believe JK Rowling said it best: “Whether you come back by page or by big screen, Hogwarts will always be there to welcome you home.”