Iqbal, Razia. Videotaped interview of J.K. Rowling, BBC News, 1 November 2007.
(video of Jo showing the reporter the book)
JKR: Actually, this whole book was left to Hermione, yeah, but the "Tale of the Three Brothers" was the one where she saw the mark of the Hallows. And so...
Razia Iqbal: One of the limited edition of only seven. Hand-written fairy stories illustrated by the author, this book is the first thing J.K. Rowling has written since the last Harry Potter novel was published.
JKR: So, "The Hairy Heart" ... My husband and daughter assures me it looks nothing like a real heart...
(cut to JKR reading from the dedication of the 7th copy)
JKR: Six of these books has been given to those most closely connected to the Harry Potter books during the past 17 years. This seventh copy will be auctioned, the proceeds to help institutionalised children who...
(cut to Ms. Iqbal interviewing JKR)
RI: This is particularly exciting, I suppose because it comes so soon after the last book and so this is what J.K. Rowling is doing next, isn't it?
JKR: Well, it's what I've done next, yeah. So people kept saying to me, "Oh, you'll be glad you're having a break from writing." Of course, I wasn't having a break at all, I was literally writing out, because these are hand-written books... ummm... these new stories, which has been-- it's been a wonderful way to say goodbye, actually. It's been great to-- It's like coming up from a deep dive, I suppose. I've been writing about the world. It's not about Harry, Ron, and Hermione, but it comes from that world. So it's been... partly, I didn't expect it to be, but it's been therapeutic, in a way. A nice way to say goodbye.
RI (voice-over): And the book of fairy stories opens a new chapter in J.K. Rowling's charitable work. I asked her why vulnerable children in Eastern Europe became the focus of the charity she founded.
JKR: I think it was the powerlessness. I think I've got a real, ummm, terror of being powerless. And, ummm, I could not think of any person with less of a voice... more disenfranchised than, ummm, a child with mental health issues or a mental illness or mentally handicapped who's been taken from their family or given by their family to an institution and then placed in a cage. I couldn't think of anyone more vulnerable and anyone more in need of an articulate voice.
RI: You are incredibly wealthy and I wanted to ask you about the connection between that wealth and your social conscience. Have you always had a very strong social conscience?
JKR: I would say yes. There was this curious disassociation in my mind between the work I've done and the money I've got, because the reward seemed, when it came, so enormous, you know. It was quite scary in a way. And large amounts of money, no one should ever ever complain about having them. And I don't complain. I think they do bring a certain responsibility. Of you're any kind of human being, then you-- once you've fulfilled your needs and your family's needs, then I think if you're any kind of human then you'll think "How do I do some good with this?" And I think most people in my position would do that.
RI: You've just come back from a tour in the States where you made the news in all kinds of ways, not least because you revealed that Dumbledore is gay. Had you always seen him as gay in your mind?
JKR: Yeah. Always. No one ever asked me. No one ever asked me "Has he ever been in love?" or "Who did he love?" No. People have been very focused on what happens to Harry. So I've never been asked a direct question. And because I have never been asked a direct question, and also because to answer it would immediately flag up an infatuation that happens in Book Seven, I've never said it. If I've been asked, though, I would have said it, of course.
RI (voice-over, video of a craftsman putting jewels on the cover of the book): Each cover of these books is unique. None will ever be published as J.K. Rowling holds the copyright. And the one which will be auctioned is relying on the considerable cachet of the Harry Potter brand.
Original page date 3 Nov 2007; last updated 3 Nov 2007.