J.K. Rowling Speaks About “Career of Evil” on BBC Radio 2 and NPR
Just over two weeks ago, we were excited to learn that J.K. Rowling was going to take part in her second ever Robert Galbraith interview to speak about her new book, Career of Evil. Jo first spoke as Galbraith last year at the Harrogate Crime Writing Festival. The interview, on BBC Radio 2 with Simon Mayo, took place today, November 2 and coincided with another interview on NPR.
The last time J.K. Rowling was interviewed by Simon Mayo was in 2000, just before the Potter series really took off, and in the opening of their interview today, both Jo and Simon referred to this last encounter, with Jo joking that nothing much had really changed since then.
In the interview, Jo discussed the writing of the book, including the inspiration behind Cormoran Strike. Aside from discussing Career of Evil, the pair also discussed Harry Potter and the Cursed Child tickets going on sale, with Jo stating that she is really excited about the play and had no desire to write this story in novel form, but it came together with the right team. She said,
I didn’t go looking for this; this found me.
Simon also asked if Jo had planned to write any more books as J.K. Rowling. Jo replied that she has many ideas, including a half-written children’s book and several more ideas for books for adults. She admitted that she does
sometimes worry [she] will die before [she has] written all her ideas.
In the NPR interview, Jo spoke further about why she’d chosen to use a pseudonym:
I think that ‘Potter’ was incredible, and I am so grateful for what happened with ‘Harry Potter’, and that needs to be said. The relationship I had with those readers, and still have with those readers, is so valuable to me. Having said that, there was a phenomenal amount of pressure that went with being the writer of ‘Harry Potter’, and that aspect of publishing those books I do not particularly miss. So you can probably understand the appeal of going away and creating something very different and just letting it stand or fall on its own merits.
She also spoke about wanting to explore the concept of fame in her writing:
It’s at a remove because he himself, when the series starts, is not famous, but he’s the son of a famous man — so he has all of the drawbacks of being associated with fame and none of the advantages. So I look at the effect that an individual’s fame has on their family, for example, and the limitations that places upon your life to an extent — of course, it brings marvelous things, too, but it brings them mainly to the individual. The people around the famous person often pay a price without reaping many of the rewards. And I find that an interesting area and obviously, yes, that very much [of it] comes from my own experience.
Jo also discussed why writing the book gave her nightmares.
It was horrible, actually. This is the first book that’s ever given me nightmares, literal nightmares. […] I felt that I needed to do a lot of research to understand a certain mindset, which is clearly very, very far removed from my own. I read an awful lot of case studies. It was that that gave me nightmares.
Did you listen to either interview? What was your highlight? Have you read Career of Evil yet? Let us know in the comments!