Allow me to vent for one second. May I?
For years, I was one of those people who didn’t read a book or watch a movie simply because “everyone else was doing it.” I was, and still am at times, a contrarian.
Yeah, I was a nonfiction snob, too, so I obviously had many issues. Nonetheless, I forged onward in my daily life, content to yell “nay!” to your “yay!” and “black!” to your “white!”
Then Harry Potter came around. Actually, my wife and her love of the Harry Potter books came around. And, one summer evening, either out of blinding love of my future spouse or out of sheer curiousity, I chose to read the first Harry Potter book.
Several weeks ago, the social media world, or the country, or someone out there, celebrated “Banned Books Week.” Essentially, reading and promoting books that have been banned by schools and libraries in the past.
I’m not into starting political arguments on this blog, so I won’t throw out the censorship card. But I will say I’m all for a parent having the right to determine what his or her child reads. I know when my boy gets a little older, I’ll keep an eye on that.
But if you judge the American Library Association’s list of most challenged books from 2000-2009, it’s easy to see that some parents, school administrators, and librarians have lost their collective mind. Here are just a few books that made the ALA’s top 100 list of most challenged books.
But maybe I’m wrong. You tell me.
Is the mind behind The Shining, Shawshank Redemption, The Stand, and a gazillion other books a Stephanie Meyer fan?
What do you think?
So maybe you’ve heard that a little film about Harry Potter comes out today? Perhaps?
The interesting thing about J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series is that, at least in my view, it’s hard to say whether the books or the movies have been more successful. That’s rare. Usually, it’s easy to pick one or the other–and, often, it’s the book.
“The movie or the book?” is one of those classic questions, like Coke or Pepsi (Coke), the Yankees or the Red Sox (the Red Sox), and hamburgers or hot dogs (definitely burgers).
I guess it’s not surprising that a majority of the books I’ve read on the Time list have been made into movies–some extremely successful, even moreso than their novel counterparts (e.g. Gone With The Wind and One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest).
I mentioned this on Wednesday, but for every great novel turned into a movie, there’s still many that are waiting for some creative screenwriter and director to put them on the big screen
Three books from the first 21 that I would love to see get the “Harry Potter treatment”:
I really wouldn't want to be one of the many editors who said, "Uh, no thanks," to J.K. Rowling.
Despite my obvious love for fiction, I’ve never attempted to write a novel and I probably never will. Nonfiction book? Possibly. But fiction? Highly, highly doubtful.
That said, this blog post written by Chuck Sambuchino is inspiring—and hopefully you guys who are writers will feel the same way. If you thought all the great novels were shoe-ins to be great novels from the start, then you’re wrong.
The list of classic novels that were rejected by publishers—multiple times, even—is quite long. Some of the highlights include (with Chuck’s comments in box quotes):