7.31.2007

Storytelling

I just finished the last of the Harry Potter books this Friday (there will be no spoilers here so no worries) and as I approached the last page it became difficult to imagine that this would be the last time that I would hear from Harry, Ron, and Hermione with whom I felt as though I have spent the last seven years trapsing around Hogwarts, learning spells and fighting off Death Eaters. My reaction was one of sadness as the journey finally came to a close and I think that makes sense.
JK Rowling created a world filled with such rich detail and wonderful people, that its almost impossible not to become immersed in it. Rowling shows her ability as a storyteller by creating a world so seamlessly that the reader is no longer focused on the form the author has chosen to use to convey the message but becomes so involved in the story that they feel as though they have walked amongst the characters and know them personally. The feeling of closeness to the characters runs throughout Rowling's books so much so that I almost feel a loss as though I will be losing connection with people that feel as though they were once friends of mine. Its rare that a book, much a less a series of books is able to allow its audience to capture this feeling and its this quality that continues to draw readers to these books and really enables them to succeed as more than just children's stories but as works of art.
As a person drawn to the art of storytelling I find these books to be very inspiring and yet also sometimes a source of huge intimidation. I look at these books and think about the characters and their interactions and the human-ness that feels like it oozes off the page and I want to create something like it, something that will grab readers and capture their thoughts and emotions. At the same time I am torn with the idea of not wanting to create a derivative work but create something unique, something never experienced before and the enormity of that task. Either way Harry Potter has left me with a lot to think about, but mostly I find myself deeply appreciative to JK Rowling for allowing me to share in these Hogwarts adventures.

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