Thursday, 27 November 2014

Harry Potter Moment of the Week #9

How do you feel about the HP film cast? Any that don't fit with the image you had?

I think the debate about HP film casting can be an endless one, especially for those who read the books before they saw the movies. I consider it quite lucky that I saw the first movie before reading the first book and, therefore, had a fixed image of the main trio as well as the other characters that we meet in the first movie and book in my mind. Of course, one can constantly argue the fact that in the movies Harry's eyes are not green, his hair doesn't stick out all over the place, Ron isn't lanky and gangly and Hermione's hair isn't bushy enough or at all. However, these are minor quibbles that I can let go, because I do love the main trio and the main cast and I can enjoy watching the movies without getting all riled up about it - it's the script, the dialogues and the often misinterpreted actions of the characters that bother me more at this point.

But it's the casting choice for the GoF that particularly angers me and that I can't reconcile with the images of the characters that I'd had established in my mind long before seeing the movie. 

First of all, it's the casting of Madame Maxime. This is the one that gets me every time, because I think the actress, who played her (no matter how great and excellent she is as an actress) just didn't fit the description in the book and was a far cry from what I'd expected to see when I imagined a handsome half-giantess. 

"As she stepped into the light flooding the Entrance Hall, she was revealed to have a handsome, olive-skinned face, large, black, liquid-looking eyes and a rather beaky nose. Her hair was drawn back in a shining knob at the base of her neck. She was dressed from head to foot in black satin, and many magnificent opals gleamed at her throat and on her thick fingers." (Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Chapter Fifteen). 

To tell the truth, I imagined Madame Maxime to look something like Montserrat Caballe and I was very disappointed when she turned out to look completely different in the movie. I don't know, maybe it's just me, but I believe the she looks more the part than the actress that they chose.




Also, Victor Krum. "Victor Krum was thin, dark and sallow-skinned, with a large curved nose and thick black eyebrows. He looked like an overgrown bird of prey." (Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Chapter Eight).

For me, he always looked more like this guy than the actual actor who played him. Once again, the casting didn't fit the bill, at least, as far as I'm concerned.


Thursday, 20 November 2014

Harry Potter Moment of the Week

As it is free week I've decided to have some fun and share with whoever is reading my posts my old attempt at writing a-Rita-Skeeter-type of article about Ginny in Witch Weekly Magazine, under the section 'Fashion Flops'. Here it goes:

Miss Ginevra Weasley, 19, shocked the gathered witches and wizards as she struck a pose at the Ministry of Magic Annual Charity Ball in  an offensively extravagant gown and a matchless Pygmy Puff-style clutch. "It looked like she made it herself," said one of the guests of honour, outraged by such a ghastly display.

Many of you, of course, remember her as the girl who captured Harry Potter's heart, breaking hundreds of other hopeful and, undoubtedly, more deserving hearts in the process. And, by the looks of it, she isn't going to stop there, if her recent fashion antics are anything to go by.

"I don't know who she's fooling," said Pansy Parkinson, who was also in attendance, "but if she was going for class, then she shouldn't have purchased what looked like a multicoloured knitted rag from a Muggle second-hand shop. But then again, the Weasleys have always been notoriously poor and I sincerely hope that she'll benefit from this ball. After all, its purpose is charity."

Meanwhile, the staff of our magazine wonders what Harry Potter himself thinks of his girlfriend's abysmal lack of style and is deeply concerned whether it will not damage his public image. We believe and we are sure that our readers and fervent admirers of Mr. Potter will agree that he deserves a more suitable candidate for his heart than a flighty Quidditch player.

So what do you, guys, think? I mean to say, I'm pretty sure that wizarding newspapers and magazines wouldn't pass up a chance to write some scathing articles about Ginny.

Monday, 10 November 2014

Rejection №3

Alas, another rejection!

Dear Farida,


Many thanks for your patience in waiting to hear from us. We have read this with great interest. We are however sorry to say that after careful consideration we are not able to offer you representation for your work. Due to the high volume of work that we are receiving we are having to be extremely selective about the work that we choose to represent, and we are only able to take on very few authors at this time. We apologise for the disappointing response and as this is such a subjective industry we would strongly recommend that you send your work to as many other agencies as possible. We are sure that you will find the right home for this and we wish you every success in doing so.


Best wishes

I didn't have the chance to post Rejection №2, because I never got it in written form, which is in accord with the agency's policy regarding manuscripts they don't want.

Saturday, 8 November 2014

Курс "Як видати книгу" у Львові


На минулих вихідних (1-2 листопада) я відвідала курс «Як видати книгу», що проходив у Львові від організації Центр літературної освіти. Незважаючи на те, що я пишу переважно англійською мовою, іноді мені кортить написати щось рідною - українською - мовою. Мені здається, що українська мова якнайкраще підходить для чарівних, магічних, феєричних, загадкових та казкових жанрів літератури — тобто, саме для таких жанрів, яким я надаю перевагу у своїх мріях, творах, казках та (майбутніх) романах. 

Звісно ж, мені було дуже цікаво дізнатися якомога більше про те, як видаються книжки в Україні, як працюють видавництва, як контактувати з видавцями, як проходить процес книговидання, промоутингу, і таке інше. Для мене було несподіванкою дізнатися, що в нашій країні існує хоча б один літературний агент, бо до цього часу я й гадки не мала, що вони в нас взагалі є. Чомусь ніхто ніколи про них нічого не каже і навіть не згадує. Як з'ясувалося, вони все ж таки є, але їх дуже і дуже небагато. Крім того, я дізналася, що видавництва надають перевагу роботі напряму з автором, без посередників (мовляв, таким чином видавництвам легше маніпулювати авторами). 

На відміну від європейської та американської системи книговидання, у нашій країні автор може звертатися безпосередньо до видавництва та видавця, і я вважаю, що в цьому є свої плюси. Але, з іншого боку, я так зрозуміла, що в нашій країні існує зовсім невелика кількість дійсно активних видавництв, які, окрім власного прибутку, також орієнтовані на просування авторів. Але, разом з тим, я зробила для себе декілька чарівних відкриттів. Наприклад, в нас є такі видавництва як «Видавництво Старого Лева» та «Смолоскип». Які гарні назви! 

Мені дуже сподобалось слухати різних спікерів, серед яких були автори, видавці, головні редактори та навіть літературний агент, бо кожен представляв якусь окрему ланку книжкової справи, що надало можливість подивитися на цю 'кухню' з різних боків та дізнатися деякі таємниці різних видавництв. 

Також я познайомилася із авторкою, яка вже надрукувала свою першу книгу (роман-фентезі) і яка планує надрукувати цілу серію книжок. Все, що я почула і побачила, підштовхнуло мене нарешті зважитись та зробити те, про що я дозволяла собі тільки мріяти як про щось примарне та недосяжне — я вирішила почати писати українською мовою. Наразі я вже почала перекладати одну свою невеличку казочку з англійської на українську мову із метою спробувати видати її в Україні. Що ж, побачимо, що з цього вийде!

Thursday, 16 October 2014

Harry Potter Moment of the Week

Where would you live as a witch/wizard?

I think that being a witch it would make sense to live among wizards or at least as far away from muggles and their sharp eyes as possible. I just can't imagine what it would be like to be cautious all the time, to watch my every move and conceal my magic so as not to break the Statute of Secrecy or bring about something worse. I mean, what about taking my Crup for a walk or having a couple of Nifflers around? Growing pumpkins the size of a garden shed? Playing an occasional game of Quidditch with my friends?

The Burrow

Luna's house


Shell Cottage
At the same time, I've noticed that most of the wizarding houses that we've encountered throughout the series - The Burrow, Shell Cottage, Luna's house, Grimmauld Place, Malfoy Manor - stand in seclusion and isolation from the wizarding community; some of them not far away from muggle villages or else smack in between muggle houses. Of course, in terms of distance from work and other wizarding dwellings and places it doesn't matter, because there are different means of transportation that will get you anywhere you want in a blink of an eye, but I think it would be extremely lonesome in any of such places unless your family was as large as the Weasleys or you had an imagination as rich and vibrant as Luna's. But even Luna is starved for friends!


Malfoy Manor

So, taking it all into consideration, I think I would prefer to live in a wizarding village like Godric's Hollow or Hogsmeade or, at the very least, not far away from one of them, where I wouldn't have to hide my magic and be near other witches and wizards.

Happy Birthday to me))


+
warm slippers and a bath-towel))

Thursday, 9 October 2014

Harry Potter Moment of the Week

Quibbler or Daily Prophet?

I have to say Daily Prophet. After all, it is the major wizarding newspaper in England and "it's good to keep up with what's going on in the wizarding world" (Prisoner of Azkaban, Chapter One - Owl Post), even if the source of information can be often biased. But isn't it the case with newspapers and other news sources in general, whether it comes from muggle or wizarding world? It did print true stuff when it wasn't under pressure from the Ministry of Magic to keep things quiet and, thankfully, Rita Skeeter is not the only correspondent working there. Ginny Potter worked there as a Quidditch Correspondent and I greatly enjoyed following her reports on Quidditch World Cup that took place this summer in Patagonian desert - just check out Pottermore - it was great. So, on the whole, I believe I would enjoy getting and reading it. I can't find the quote but I think it was Dumbledore who said something along the lines that Daily Prophet is bound to get something right once in a while. Besides, I just can't imagine taking Quibbler seriously and as much as I love Luna I'm so not into Crumple-Horned Snorkacks. However, I would consider it as an alternative source of information (that it actually became for a while) if Daily Prophet continued to print false reports and turn a blind eye on something as important and life-threatening as the return of You-Know-Who.