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What’s next?

29 Aug

Okay, so last week I said that once Pottermore was done Mitchell and I would be starting something new that we’d mentioned before. That something is…

 

*dramatic drum roll noises*

 

The Harry Potter Re-Read! [official name to be decided].

Exactly what it sounds like, we’ll be doing a lengthy and in-depth read and analysis of all seven Harry Potter books. I may take a quick look at each film after we finish its book, just to comment on things that were added or changed and things I liked/disliked, but I know Mitchell isn’t so keen on the films so that will probably just be me. We haven’t decided yet.

This is a big project, folks. That means the unofficial weekly schedule I seem to have fallen into is going to vanish; these posts will take much longer to write. We have a certain amount of content already from past conversations about the series, but it’s going to need a lot of editing and polishing and we need to add more from actually re-reading the books, it’s been years since either of us last read them. We also live in different time zones and both work part-time, meaning scheduling time to work on this is going to prove interesting, and we’re likely to spend a lot of time laughing helplessly or getting sidetracked and ranting for pages about a single sentence, which will also add to the time.

When it starts, we’re going to be looking at the books in a lot of depth, focusing on worldbuilding, characterisation and plot holes, as well as diverting occasionally into things that really infuriate us about Rowling’s attitudes. Expect rants. Many rants. But unlike our general Pottermore mockery, we will try to provide a more balanced view where we can; there are still some things we like about the series, or we wouldn’t spend so much time on it.

I’m pretty excited about this, guys. It’s going to be a lot of fun. Time for all you lurkers to come into the light and talk to us, our few regular commenters are awesome but we know there are a lot more of you out there reading silently.

Watch this space.

 

Addendum by Mitchell:

This re-read/deconstruction is something Loten and I have been looking forward to doing for a long time (though we’ve been admittedly putting it off for a while, because it’s going to be an enormous undertaking). We both have lots of Thoughts about this series, which I suppose is only natural considering how we met and how long we’ve been discussing it, so a reread and in-depth analysis was inevitable. At one point Loten undertook to winnow out the best of our Potter-related discussions from the better part of two years’ personal correspondence, and there’s at least a hundred pages of text there (amusingly, we can no longer tell which of us wrote any given passage in that document, but that’s neither here nor there), just to give you an idea.

I’m going to be perfectly clear from the outset that our intent here is not completely friendly to the text – while there are things we love about the Harry Potter series, there are also lots of things we hate about it; I really can’t put it any other way (if you’ve read any of our fanfiction, this probably won’t be a surprise), and we intend to subject the text to quite a bit of critical analysis and will be discussing many of those issues in great detail. That said, I am prepared to be pleasantly surprised; it’s been long enough since I’ve read these books that I’ll admit my memory of the things that don’t enrage me may be rather hazy.

If this sounds like fun, please do stick around, and join us in the comments – I’m sure we’ll miss plenty of things, too. We’ve been going through these stories with a fine-toothed comb for years and keep finding new things to discuss, after all.

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14 Comments

Posted by on August 29, 2014 in loten, mitchell

 

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

14 responses to “What’s next?

  1. angelicfayth

    August 29, 2014 at 8:57 pm

    You guys are going to make me come out of my self-imposed lurker shell and comment aren’t you?

    If you don’t mind my asking how are you going to take this on a chapter by chapter basis, chapter chunks, or the whole book in one go? (this, probably, is going to prompt me to go re-read the series …) Looking forward to this though ^_^

    If you guys do look at the movies (and I really hope I’m not being super presumptuous here) there’s a youtube channel called CinemaSins . While sometimes its nit-picky, it does ferret out plot holes and inconsistencies …while mocking parts of the movie… it might might be good for a laugh. While they haven’t done all 8 movies I believe they’re at the order of the phoenix.

     
    • Loten

      August 30, 2014 at 7:51 am

      Yes. Yes we are.

      The plan right now is for chapter by chapter, though chapter chunks might happen if we have too much to rant about in one place and some of the slower chapters might be combined. It depends on how much we have to say about each bit. The whole book at once would probably kill us, honestly!

       
  2. DawnM

    August 29, 2014 at 9:00 pm

    I have been waiting anxiously for this ever since you first mentioned it! With both eagerness and trepidaton.

     
    • Loten

      August 30, 2014 at 7:52 am

      I think that’s how we feel about it too 🙂

       
  3. melodyssister

    August 29, 2014 at 10:38 pm

    De-lurking to say I’m looking forward to this immensely!

     
  4. All-I-need

    August 30, 2014 at 1:14 pm

    Yesssss! I’ve been waiting for this! Awesome, I can’t wait to see you go through all of the books all over again.
    One question: Are you going to go over the worldbuilding chronologically? Obviously things mentioned in Book 1 can’t be classified as worldbuilding screw-ups if Rowling contradicts herself at a later time, but would rather make the contradiction be the screw-up, right?

     
    • Loten

      August 30, 2014 at 5:19 pm

      Yes, we are. In that scenario (which crops up quite a lot…) the later contradiction will be the screw-up and that’s what we’ll be laughing at.

       
      • mcbender

        August 30, 2014 at 5:47 pm

        I would’ve answered that a bit differently, I think, if only because we’ll probably comment on the fact that X fact is contradicted later on at the time we come across it, also (things like, e.g., Dumbledore’s speech to Harry at the end of PS/SS comes across as positively mendacious once you know backstory details Rowling attempts to fill in later). Which of these is the screw-up is open to interpretation, I suppose (e.g. if she had been planning that to be the backstory the entire time, then the failure is in how she wrote the original speech, whereas if she hadn’t, the failure is in neglecting to reread and account for what she’d already written), but it’s incontrovertible that the story is inconsistent and both versions cannot simultaneously be true (unless Dumbledore is a manipulative liar, which he may well be though the text claims otherwise).

        I don’t think there’s really any way to explain this without a concrete example, so maybe that makes things clearer? (Clear as mud, perhaps?) Regardless, we will certainly endeavour to point out all of the inconsistencies we see 🙂

         
  5. Kazavan

    September 3, 2014 at 6:33 pm

    Please Please do this soon 🙂 (Also delurking). Loten’s fanfic was the first I read and got me into it, and your observations have a nasty habit of becoming headcanon.

     
    • Loten

      September 4, 2014 at 7:25 am

      As soon as we can 🙂 Hello.

       
  6. narratively

    September 10, 2014 at 2:31 am

    First time visitor (though long time fan of Loten’s) and I’m incredibly excited by this project. Best of luck!

     
  7. Lisa

    September 12, 2014 at 7:40 pm

    Dear Loten, i am also a longtime fan and have already written some messages to you over ff.net. It seems like a lot of work – does that mean you are not likely to publish any new fanfiction soon? I check your page on ff.net almost daily and hope so much for something new. Your stories are by far my favorite ones and I must have read each one at least ten times, PTL and CTS probably more often. I long for something new from you, even if it is ‘just’ a nice one-shot…
    Xoxo from germany, Lisa

     
    • Loten

      September 13, 2014 at 7:53 am

      Good to hear from you 🙂 I’m not likely to publish a new long fic soon, no, sadly; but I am working on a smaller project to tide people over, since as you say this re-read is going to be quite a lot of work and I haven’t had much time for my own writing in recent months.

       
  8. Lisa

    September 13, 2014 at 9:32 pm

    Thank you for answering 🙂 a smaller project would be great! I miss ‘your’ Severus 😉

     

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