The important point about the following is that these are events that have passed into history. That is most depressing for those of us who know the truth of the origins of Harry Potter and the shameless theft that gave rise to it.

They are recorded in books and blogs and a great many people believe them. Seemingly nobody is even scratching their head over the obvious and amazing contradictions, evasions and downright lies that they comprise. No book in history has been so frosted with misinformation coming from the very people who committed the crime.

  1. Length of first manuscript not known. Rowling says it is 80,000 words. At the Lexicon trial under oath she says it was 95,000. Little says it was “at least 65,000 words”. Elsewhere it is 120,000 words (Philip Nel). Does any of this make sense? Don’t they KNOW? This is the best selling book of all time and the people who published it DO NOT KNOW HOW MANY PAGES IT HAD WHEN THEY GOT IT AND THEREFORE THE APPROXIMATE WORD COUNT. NOR DID ITS ALLEGED AUTHOR!

  2. Her editor at Bloomsbury, Barry Cunningham, says he got the MS in the post from Christopher a brown envelope. “I just got the brown envelope one day,” he says. (Scotsman interview)

  3. He says he read it in his office,”trying to understand the rules of Quidditch etc”, an event that happens long into the Potter narrative. In a Canadian interview he says he took it home and read it at one sitting. (“Je me suis installé un soir à la maison et j’ai dévoré le roman.”). Likewise Christopher Little says in one account that he read it over lunch while Bryony Evens his Asst. tells us he took it home and read it.

In a CNN interview Cunningham says he read it and “bought it the next day”.

  1. Bryony Evens said Bloomsbury was one of the very first publishing houses she sent it out to the year before.

  2. Little says Bloomsbury was the last they sent it out to.

  3. “Then, finally, in August 1996, Christopher Little telephoned me and told me that Bloomsbury had made an offer.” (Rowling). If the decision to publish had been made within days of receiving the manuscript according to Cunningham why didn’t somebody tell Rowling? Why must she wait until three months later? Nigel Newton, the chairman of Bloomsbury Publishing, strives to give the impression that only he and his daughter were aware of the book and the decision was made about it months later but this account is flaty contradicted by statements made by Cunningham, de la Hey and Calder.

  4. Newton says it was his daughter who got to read it first. “I read a specimen chapter. I took my set of pages home and showed them to Alice… ”
  5. Cunningham says it was his daughter who got to read it first.

  6. Little received the Potter book in 1994. Rowling is therefore lying that she finished it in 1995.

Cunningham, a chronic alcoholic at the time, is asked by the hard-headed businessman and founder of Bloomsbury Nigel Newton to set up a children’s fiction division in 1994.

  1. Cunningham says he signed Rowling up personally over lunch in October 1996 and clinched a deal for two books with Little in a phone call the next day. Hadn’t Newton and the directors already decided to publish it as soon as they got it in August? Didn’t Calder say they had already decided long before this lunch? Had Cunningham, their commissioning editor, been left out of the decision making process?

  2. According to the Scotsman interview with Cunningham it all happened in his office; “When a grateful JK Rowling settled down in Barry’s office at Bloomsbury Children’s Books that late summer day in 1996 to sign up for a fee of just a couple of thousand pounds….etc.” And it happened in August evidently.

  3. Little too was supposed to have been at that October lunch but in Cunningham’s account no mention at all is made of Little. Nor in Rowling’s.

  4. Another version says Cunningham gave her the cheque over lunch and she went off to buy Christmas presents for her kid and went back home (five hour journey) the same day. “Here was a single mum and the amount of money I was paying for these books wasn’t going to pay the bills for long – a few thousands,” says Cunningham of the bistro meeting which seemingly serves meals in “courses”. This version certainly puts the lunch at late October. And the decision an impromptu one by Cunningham. Calder is lying then about the decision to publish having been made in August? Or Cunningham? Or both?

  5. Newton says he himself signed her up months later after being pestered by his daughter who read a “sample chapter”.

  6. Newton says he sent Rowling her cheque.

  7. The advance then became £1,000, then £1,500 and then £2,500 which we guess struck them as acceptable, as the other stipends were kind of over-doing it a tad. When asked if he gave Rowling £1,000 pounds Newton said he, “can neither confirm or deny“. Didn’t he know, seeing as he had written the cheque? HOW CAN THEY NOT KNOW HOW MUCH THEY GAVE HER? HOW DID THEY FORGET TO TELL THE PRESS THAT THE PALTRY SUM PAID WAS FOR TWO BOOKS NOT ONE? Simple, they gave her nothing of the sort. It is all fiction, like everything else. They make the bull up as they go along.

  8. Newton says he was given a sample chapter by Little that he then gave to his daughter without reading it. In another version he takes some pages from the MS and again goes home without reading them to hand them to his daughter. In a third version he reads the chapter before handing it over to his daughter and in a fourth he does not have a chapter at all but a “set of pages” so leaving himself room to be reading some of it while his daughter reads the rest. Cunningham on the other hand, hungry as ever for glory, says he read it first. Didn’t he urge his boss to read it immediately afterwards as he was all excited by it and so forth? Wasn’t that part of his job, to return to his master forthwith with the bone? Why didn’t Newton get to read the first chapter at least and join in the fun at the office? Had Little himself not thought to phone up boss Newton too as a good agent would and have a chat to him about the book that made his “toes curl”? Maybe even mention what he failed to mention to Cunningham that it was first of a series of seven. Cunningham discovers this irrelevant fact months later in October when he meets Rowling “for the first time”, yo ho ho.

  9. Cunningham says he read the book “as a favour” to Little who had phoned him up and told him he “should” read it. Kind of conflicts with the yarn of Cunningham’s that it just arrived out of the blue one day at his office. “I just got the brown envelope one day.” You would have to say that, as fiction, that makes for better reading because then it looks like magic and everything, appearing out of the nowhere like that, like the cheques… er letters… coming to Potter from On High. The magical MS in its very ordinary, drab, little envelope. How could they have let that one go? But the “favour” bit does have the human touch, you have to admit. It suggests the overwhelming love and affection that makes Potter what he is. Love and affection for money, that is. Cunningham says he “wasn’t sure if Little had read it or not”. Yea, we agree… but he did say it. How could Little recommend to anybody“you should read this”, if he had not read it himself? Wasn’t he a literary agent? Could not old Barry assume at a bare minimum that Little had read it on behalf of his client and knew what he had put into the little, ordinary, tattered, ugly duckling of a brown envelope? Sorry, we got carried away there. Did Little hand Cunningham William’s manuscript at some stage and say:“Barry, you should read this.” We believe that is exactly what happened. “All we have to do is inject this stuff with Dahl fantasies and we are made! Cunning-ham would have responded, slipping out of his Puffin costume. We have no reason to believe this to be an improbable scenario; as this indubitable fact of outright plagiarism alone explains the plethora of lies and deception at the black heart of Harry Potter. In passing, it is true Cunningham used to dress up as a Puffin in order to sell books to schools. And, Li Po, the original Dumbledore who is the provost of the college of sorcerers in William’s book takes the form of a Puffin – shape-shifting and all that, long before Rowling or the rest of the sods ever even heard of it. Did wee Barry Cunningham become so identified with Li Po the magical Puffin in one of his psychotic booze fuelled trips that he figured he had a God given right to rip William’s book off. “Li Po is ME!” he might have cried, preening his feathers. One can see him prancing down Little’s stairs in his orange outfit, out of his skull. As Newton says; “out of uncertainty comes discovery”. Profound words Nigel. Profound. But not as profound as “out of the talentless comes theft” (Li Po). One cannot help speculating nonetheless. Because, if Rowling’s editor saw, or thought he saw, his own reflection in Li Po then we spot immediately the depressing possibility that Cunningham is the model for Dumbledore in all his whackiness and Spike Milligan-zaniness etc, etc. Spike and Dumbledore; there’s a probable connection there, in more ways than one. Spike you see was a friend of Cunningham’s and used to act the Goon at the drop of a hat. By proxy, Spike’s character becomes the model for Dumbledore. Plumb forgot… it is Rowling who wrote it! How many times do we have to be told?

  10. Little did not mention that the book was part of a series.

  11. Little did not mention the book was part of a series either in the synopsis he sent with the MS. Nor even in the phone call he made to Cunningham. Never mentioned it to anybody else there either, not even to his boss Newton or co-founder Liz Calder whose experience in children’s literature was great. Perhaps the fact of a series was not considered important.

  12. Cunningham has to wait for his lunch with Rowling three months later to find out Harry Potter Book One is PART ONE OF A FRIGGIN’ SERIES! Rowling was “bursting to tell him”. Otherwise, he might never have known.

  13. Cunningham intimated that the book was no big deal and he felt sorry for Rowling which is why he signed her up. “Everything started quietly after that.”

  14. De la Hey says the excitement at Bloomsbury’s offices was intense over the book as soon as it arrived and they all gathered round to read it. Arrived at last! Cunningham, working in the same office, apparently missed it all.

  15. Calder, in one of the very few statements she has made about Potter or Rowling, described the scene of intense excitement and how the decision to publish it had been rapidly made. Rowling gets to know about it in October during the ‘first course’ at a bistro in Soho that Little her agent failed to attend or, if he was there, had lost all powers of speech or been wearing his invisibility cloak that he was never to leave off. Cunninhgam out of pity for the poor wretch decides to buy it. Boo hoo.

  16. Although they all “loved it” and “the buzz in the office was terrific” (de la Hey) they didn’t think it would sell. So they printed 500 copies only that later became 1000 and then 1500 all the way up to 7,000 ( Smith’s bio). Despite their recent galloping success and the millions from a share float they just simply could not afford a couple of grand for marketing purposes. They might have borrowed from Little but alas, he was skint too so much so that, according to Evens, they could scarcely afford the postage for sending their manuscripts out. Grown men and women actually believe this claptrap.

  17. Cunningham says he was “confident the book would do well”. Why then did he tell Rowling she “would not make any money out of it”?

  18. Little says “his toes curled” when he read it. Why then did he tell her “she would not make any money out of it”? Who was first to tell her “she would not make any money out of it”? Or were there others?

  19. Cunningham says he didn’t know that the book had been turned down by twelve publishers. Why did nobody tell him? And if the book was all so exciting why does none of them express any surprise at this? Cunningham ventures to suggest with a straight face that they turned it down on the grounds that it was too long. All twelve of them, not a squeak of genuine interest from one of them.

  20. Who are these twelve publishers? Only three are mentioned and Cunningham worked for two of them. Why don’ t they all come forward?

  21. Alan Wherry, co-founder of Bloomsbury, goes to New York in 1996 to set up a children’s division of Bloomsbury there. How could Bloomsbury decide to do that when they were supposedly skint and could not afford to market even a single kid’s book back home that they were all in a tizzy about? Why did they decide to open a new office in New York of all places? Why not Boston. Why did Scholastic decide to open a new office at the same time and Janet Hogarth working in Bloomsbury’s children’s division decide to leave home and work for Scholastic at the same time? Life is full of coincidences.

  22. Janet Hogarth migrates to Scholastic around then too. She gives Scholastic’s man Arthur Levine the book according to one biographer.

  23. Levine lies therefore about picking the book up at Bologna. Why does he feel he has to lie?

  24. Levine lies again when he says he bought the book in an auction in New York that we know for certainty never happened.

  25. Rowling says there were ten bidders at the auction as told to her over the phone by Little allegedly in New York.

  26. Later she amends this to “three bidders” on her own website. Looks like they are making it up as they go along? The Brits call this “duckin’ and divin’”.

  27. The book is expressly and indubitably AIMED at adults as well as children. Rowling admits to this while also trying to sell the fable that she wrote only for herself. The jacket too is designed to appeal to adults and marketing manager de La Hey says they deliberately targeted (“hoodwinked” is the word she uses) adults into buying it. Why then do they tell us all how “surprised” they are that adults took to it? “I never, ever thought adults would take to it too,” says Cunningham who, incidentally, has first and last say, as editor, in jacket design.

Little had learnt from Cunningham at the 1995 Frankfurt Book Fair that they were looking for something special. He waits until June the following year to send him Potter. Newton says by that time he “ he did not say so at the time, he must have been running out of potential publishers for JK Rowling’s first children’s book – eight of the big companies had, according to the subsequent legend, already turned it down. ”.

What legend Newton or have you just added one? You are the man who published it. You should KNOW how many publishers had turned it down by then. And if what you say is correct then Mr. Little spent from October 1995 to June 1996 a total of eight months sending this very exciting book that made his toes curl to FOUR more publishers. What an agent!

Scholastic bought the rights according to Rowling three months after Bloomsbury published it ie, September 1996. Some said it was within days of it being published in July. The Scolastic version did not appear until Oct 1998. In the book it says it has been printed “in association with Bloomsbury”. That states categorically that they still did not have the rights. So no rights had been bought at no auction. And Levine is lying about both finding the book and buying it.

“I thought I’d written something that maybe a handful of people would like, so this has been something of a shock, to say the least!” said Rowling as she sat at the front table of the room, facing her captive audience at the conference.

I always thought that children would love it,” he (Cunningham) said. “But to be honest I was very surprised that so many adults loved it too. When it became that famous word — a ‘cross-over’ sensation — that I never would have predicted.”

The books had been premeditatedly written and structured, as a series, to be aimed at both adults and children. Neither Rowling nor Potter were ‘discovered’. Both were known to exist by Cunningham and Little and it is fair to assume that both these idiots had been working on it with Rowling from as far back as 1990 when the idea came to them that they could amalgamate two books and go undetected by making the gap between the heist and the product seven years – a year for each book in the series.

This would make their story so plausible that NOBODY would ever doubt it. Nobody ever did. Because to say they planned that far in advance would be so improbable to the average mind that nobody but the victims could dare believe it. That’s why when Rowling was asked in the Lexicon trial how long she took to write the first book she says without a prompt “Seven years” without so much as shedding a tear.

On her website she says the book was finished in 1995. We don’t believe it. We know it arrived with Little in 1994. She says she began it in Portugal in 1991 and had finished the first three chapters only before coming home for Christmas 1993. In another version she was writing it when her mum died in December 1990.

In any case, she would have spent on and off three years and a bit writing Potter. And that is entirely misleading because the amount of time spent actually WRITING it can be measured in days not years. It is clear to anyone with average reading experience that Potter Book One, whatever else you may think of it, was a rushed job. No doubt about it.

Why then does she tell the judge and the press in New York that she spent “seven” years writing Potter Book One? Read this paragraph again, if you have missed the point. It is all about “hoodwinking” the public as de la Hey so boldly expressed it. Seven years in the world of publishing is nothing. The time will go anyway, whatever you do.


And it is known that Little could sit forever like a brooding hen over a manuscript, until he figured out what to do with it. For fun, let us add this.

If you are a journo who has put all his prejudices and jingoistic delusions aside to actually read this far and if you have been dumb enough to contact Schillings with regards to any of it you may already have been faxed something like this:

‘We would like to point out that the allegations made by the author of the blog post “/” are unsubstantiated, unfounded and untrue. All parties mentioned in it are considering legal action against the author and you for blatant defamation. Any attempt to reiterate or publish any statement of theirs expressed in this blog or any other blog made by you or any similar texts by any member thereof is actionable and notice is hereby given. The statements contained in the blogs refer to erroneous statements to be found on many spurious websites the contents of which were not referred to Ms. Rowling or any of her representatives for prior consideration. The owners of these websites have been duly informed of their errors and have either withdrawn these statements and the articles from whence they have been taken and/or issued an apology. If you do not wish to be implicated in any future legal proceedings concerning this grave matter you would be advised to comply with these directions or face the legal consequences and such costs as they will entail.’

Ah the incantations of lawyers. Such menacing certainty based entirely on deceit! The use of such letters has secured for the culprits behind Potter inviolable secrecy and freedom from all and every form of scrutiny. We would suggest that if you receive such a chicane piece of diabolical thuggery that you put it in the bin where it belongs and consider the facts as presented here on their own merits.

We can assure you Rowling will rather fry in hell than take action against us. You can tell your grandchildren that once upon a time you found courage to stand up to Schillings when everybody in England and the rest of the world were cowering in a corner.

changed March 25, 2012