- "I have been enjoying sharing information about Harry’s world on Pottermore for free, and don’t have any firm plans to publish it in book form."
- —J. K. Rowling FAQ answer, confirming she no longer has any solid plans for this book
The Encyclopaedia of Potterworld, also called the Scottish Book, is a planned guidebook by J. K. Rowling as the authoritative directory of all the creatures, characters, places, and other elements that comprise the Harry Potter universe, containing mostly un-published notes, letters, drawings, etc. As of May 2012, this project appears to been postponed or cancelled in favour of Pottermore.
In an interview with PotterCast, Rowling stated that she definitely intended to write the encyclopaedia, but wished not to rush the process.
In court testimony in April 2008 (regarding grounds of copyright infringement) Rowling stated that she had 'recently' begun working on the project.
On 4 September, 2009, the Leaky Cauldron website reported that Rowling's fellow author, friend, and neighbour, Ian Rankin, mentioned in a BBC interview that Rowling had been "making family trees of all her characters", presumably for the encyclopaedia.
However, in May 2012, Rowling updated her official site to say that she no longer had "firm plans" to publish an encyclopaedia in book form, saying that she was currently choosing to share information on Pottermore for free instead.
Lawsuit against outside source Encyclopedias
With the lawsuit of Warner Bros and J.K. Rowling versus RDR Books, which overlooks the possible publication of Vandar Ark's printed version of his online site HP Lexicon; J.K. Rowling took legal action to defend her fictional world and the possibility of herself creating her own version of an encyclopedia or companion book to go along with the Harry Potter series.
"In this action, a distinguished and tremendously successful novelist demands the suppression of a reference guide to her works. J.K. Rowling, author of the Harry Potter books, asserts that this reference guide infringes both her copyright in the seven Potter novels and her right to publish, at some unidentified point in the future, a reference guide of her own. In support of her position she appears to claim a monopoly on the right to publish literary reference guides, and other non-academic research, relating to her own fiction." "This is a right no court has ever recognized. It has little to recommend it. If accepted, it would dramatically extend the reach of copyright protection, and eliminate an entire genre of literary supplements: third party reference guides to fiction, which for centuries have helped readers better access, understand and enjoy literary works. By extension, it would threaten not just reference guides, but encyclopedias, glossaries, indexes, and other tools that provide useful information about copyrighted works. Ms. Rowling's intellectual property rights simply do not extend so far and, even if they did, she has not shown that the publication of this reference guide poses a sufficient threat of irreparable harm to justify an injunction. Her preliminary injunction motion should be denied."
Possibility of Fan-made Encyclopedias
Based of the Preliminary Statement above it is possible for fans to create their own version of a Harry Potter encyclopedia and have it printed as book with the possibility of collecting royalities of the publicated encyclopedia. Even with the possibility of creating an actual physical Harry Potter encyclopedia the said person creating it could possibility face legal action against it publication from J.K. Rowling's legal team.
If published, subjects covered might include the method of creating a Horcrux, the manner in which Peter Pettigrew gave Lord Voldemort a rudimentary body, and the reasons for Florean Fortescue's murder.
Behind the scenes
- J. K. Rowling's calling it "The Scottish Book" is a reference to the way the play Macbeth is called "The Scottish Play," as it is considered bad luck to speak the play's name out loud, particularly before a performance.
Notes and references
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 See this FAQ on J. K. Rowling Official Site via the Web Archive
- ↑ Larry Neumeister/Associated Press, "Rowling Testifies in Lawsuit Over Harry Potter Encyclopedia", Washington Post, 15th April 2008, Pg. C04 (accessed 27th August 2009).
- ↑ http://www.the-leaky-cauldron.org/2009/9/4/ian-rankin-says-jk-rowling-writing-family-trees-and-working-on-scottish-book
- ↑ www.jkrowling.com
- ↑ FAQs - J. K. Rowling Official Site
- ↑ http://cyberlaw.stanford.edu/blog/2008/02/rdr-files-opposition-rowlings-preliminary-injunction-motion
- ↑ J.K. Rowling PotterCast Interview