Exactly 24 hours from the minute I'm writing this sentence, people will rush toward boxes, grab bound stacks of paper from them, and read as though nothing else on earth mattered. And while Muggles (and Roger) may scoff at the term, it truly is a magic moment: a reunion with old friends; the beginning of a great adventure; an experience shared with millions of other people around the world, when our world so rarely unites in love of anything, much less a book. I remember my pure joy when I first laid hands on Goblet of Fire at a midnight release party in Leawood, Kansas -- the longed-for story, mine at last -- and I wish you all that joy, and all the reading pleasure that follows.
The colophon at the back of the American edition of Deathly Hallows mentions a number of people involved in its production, but many others deserve recognition and remembrance for their roles in bringing this book to readers:
- Emma Matthewson, the Bloomsbury editor
- Isabel Ford, the Bloomsbury desk editor -- my "continuity editor" counterpart in the UK, who (with Emma) did truly heroic work
- Rachel Griffiths and Emily Clement, editor and editorial assistant at AALB
- Susan Casel, Veronica Ambrose, and Cheryl Weisman, our copyeditors/proofreaders
- Francine Colaneri and Kirk Howle in supply and manufacturing
- Ed Swart, who managed the shipping
- Mark Seidenfeld and Dev Chatillon, our HP legal team, and Teresa Connelly, who supported us through many late nights
- Rachel Coun and Suzanne Murphy, the marketing managers, and Katy Coyle, who oversees the Harry material on Scholastic.com
- Kris Moran, Kyle Good, and Sara Sinek, who coordinated all the publicity
- Francesco Sedita and his Creative Services staff
- Alan Smagler, Mary Marotta, and Margaret Coffee, our heads of sales
- and Ellie Berger and Lisa Holton, who oversee everyone
Finally, if you are home at 11:35 p.m. EST tonight (Friday) -- awaiting delivery of your copy on Saturday, surely -- you can tune in to "Nightline" on ABC for an interview-cum-profile of me and my work on the HP books. A camerawoman actually came to Queens with me this past evening for the Harry and the Potters concert (which was fantastic), so besides shots of my unnaturally neat office and unprecedentedly made-up face, you can see me and several of my friends rocking out to "Save Ginny Weasley" and "Stick It to Dolores." Good times! (There will be one more item in this Parade of Incredible Famousness, coming next week, and then midnight strikes, the mice run home, and I revert to being a happily behind-the-scenes mild-mannered children's book editor. But in the meantime, it's fun.)
The happiest of Harry days to you all!