Terry Pratchett, author of Discworld, has written a letter to the Sunday Times in which he complains that Harry Potter author JK Rowling's status has been elevated "at the expense of other writers."
Mr. Pratchett comments on Ms. Rowling's recent interview with TIME magazine in which she discusses the fact that she didn't realize Harry Potter was fantasy until after the first book was published.
According to Mr. Pratchett:
WHY IS it felt that the continued elevation of J K Rowling can only be achieved at the expense of other writers (Mistress of magic, News Review, last week)? Now we learn that prior to Harry Potter the world of fantasy was plagued with "knights and ladies morris-dancing to Greensleeves."
In fact the best of it has always been edgy and inventive, with "the dark heart of the real world" being exactly what, underneath the top dressing, it is all about. Ever since The Lord of the Rings revitalised the genre, writers have played with it, reinvented it, subverted it and bent it to the times. It has also contained some of the very best, most accessible writing for children, by writers who seldom get the acknowledgement they deserve.
Rowling says that she didn't realise that the first Potter book was fantasy until after it was published. I'm not the world's greatest expert, but I would have thought that the wizards, witches, trolls, unicorns, hidden worlds, jumping chocolate frogs, owl mail, magic food, ghosts, broomsticks and spells would have given her a clue?
Thanks to TLC for a copy of the letter.
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