Seeing It Through

I went to see the recent Harry Potter movie last night.  Normally, I wait until the crowds die down before I go see a movie, but I’ve been there opening night for every other HP movie, and I don’t plan to stop until the last one comes to theatres next year.  Which is funny since, when the books first became popular, I wasn’t interested and didn’t understand why adults would stand in an ungodly long line at midnight for hours on end just to purchase a copy of what I saw as something meant for children.  Then someone loaned me their copy of The Sorcerer’s Stone.

Within the first few pages, I was sucked into Harry’s world.  I immediately found myself empathizing with Harry, Hermione, and Ron.  I found myself visualizing each aspect of the Hogwarts school, and when Harry had to go into the Forbidden Forest, I jumped at every sound right along with him.  I quickly purchased the second and third books, and pre-ordered every book after.  Not being a fan of crowds, I didn’t wait in line at midnight, but instead showed up at the bookstore first thing in the morning, picked up my copy and left to immerse myself once again in Harry’s exploits.

I loved the first two movies, and haven’t truly enjoyed one since.  Say what you will, but director Chris Columbus captured every relevant aspect of each book perfectly, in my opinion.  He may have left out one or two bits, but nothing that I couldn’t live with, or that drastically changed the story.  Every movie since omits entire segments from the books, glosses over essential plot points, and sometimes does a horrible job of casting main characters.

So why do I still continue to see them, especially on opening night?  Because I’m caught up in that world, and I intend to finish this particular journey.  I’m still a huge fan of the books, despite having learned about some professional criticisms with the writing (which I agree, are glaring).  I’m still a fan of the world Ms. Rowling created, and the characters she used to bring us on the journey.  I also go because, now that there are no more books coming out, these movies are the only way to get my Harry Potter fix.  Well, I could go back and read the books for the eleventh time, but I’m looking for a new way to enjoy that world.

I have similar feelings about books that I write.  That folder of unfinished manuscripts I mentioned last week?  Some of those stories have been sitting in there since high school.  I’ve never thrown them away, because some part of me plans to go back and reshape them into something worth selling.  Many I’m sure will need complete overhauls, but the key elements will remain; some may only need tweaking here and there.  But since I began each journey, I intend to see them through.

Just like Harry Potter, the characters in my books mean something to me.  They’re a part of me, and I want to make sure each and every one of them gets the chance to have their story told.

I’m sure each of you has a similar story about sticking with something once you’ve begun it.  If so, I’d love to hear your comments.

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8 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Maddy
    Nov 19, 2010 @ 09:37:43

    I too was skeptical about the Harry Potter series when I first heard about it but I was sucked in like everyone else. However, I always make sure I’ve read the book first before I go and see the film.

    As for seeing it through, I’ve made my stab at Nanowrimo and I’ve even got as far as trying to write a draft letter to an agent – emphasis on draft – as I’m hoping that will add motivation to finish.

    Did you go in for Nano this year like you planned?

    Meanwhile, I’m heading back to writing while I have the house to myself for another hour.

    Reply

  2. Alyx Morgan
    Nov 19, 2010 @ 09:41:43

    Hey Maddy –

    After the third movie, I learned not to read the book before seeing the movie. The book would be too fresh in my memory & I’d end up picking the film apart even worse than I already do.

    Yes, I’ve been participating in Nano this year, not as successfully as I’d hoped, but that blog will come at the end of November. 🙂

    WooHoo for free time to write! Enjoy, & thank you for stopping by.

    Reply

  3. Dana
    Nov 19, 2010 @ 10:40:48

    I got totally sucked into those books when I read the first one… and was so sad when the journey was finally over… Gotta say that the first two were my least favorite because of the “Home Alone” mugging. I also thought the third finally captured the ‘this world is magic’ elements by not emphasizing everything with over the top musical cues – I felt as though I’d walked into a world instead of watching a movie… but I’m also kinda dark and loved the darker elements that came out in the third book/movie…

    Reply

  4. Alyx Morgan
    Nov 19, 2010 @ 11:38:05

    Hey Dana –

    I’ve heard others have similar problems with Mr. Columbus’ directing, and I have to admit that I don’t pay much attention to directing or musical cues usually. I just felt that he captured more of the books properly. I don’t mind the look & feel of the remaining movies, I just don’t like how much gets left out or changed from book to movie.

    Since Prisoner of Azkaban was my favorite book, I’m harsher with that movie than with the others, but my biggest beef with that one is that I felt they condensed the explanation of Sirius’ relationship with Harry’s father way too much.

    Hmm…maybe my issue is actually with the screenwriter, Mr. Kloves.

    Thanks for stopping by, Dana!

    Reply

  5. Janet Ann Collins
    Nov 19, 2010 @ 18:19:32

    I read the first Harry Potter book before it became famous and liked it, though I’ve read many others just as good. I think it caught on because it combined fantasy with a world kids were familiar with; a school. I’ve enjoyed the rest of the series since. I only saw the first movie and was extremely impressed with it because it’s possibly the only movie I’ve ever seen that was actually just like the book it was made from. Guess I won’t ever bother with the newer ones.

    Reply

  6. Alyx Morgan
    Nov 19, 2010 @ 19:30:39

    LOL Well, Janet, it all depends on how loyal you want your movies to be. But if you enjoyed the first one because of how closely it resembled the book, I’d say watch the second, but then skip the rest.

    Thank you for your comment, Janet.

    Reply

  7. Diane Vallere
    Nov 20, 2010 @ 10:47:59

    Alyx-I recently uncovered my very first “novel”–it was a 26 page teen romance I penned in tenth grade! I spent a couple of hours typing it into word and saving it. Just shy of 10K words, I’m not sure what I’ll do with it, but it is now one of my projects to review at a later date. Remarkably, my voice hasn’t changed all that much…

    Good post!

    Reply

    • Alyx Morgan
      Nov 20, 2010 @ 13:49:47

      Hey Diane –

      Wow, from 10th grade! That’s very cool. I haven’t looked at my file in quite some time, so you’re inspiring me to check on them to see if my voice is similar. I’m guessing most of our voices don’t change much over the years, but thankfully the writing gets better. 😉

      Thanks for posting, Diane.

      Reply

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