The transcripts of the official inquiry into the culture, practices and ethics of the press. More…

I do not recall ever asking my publishers to tell -- to tell a newspaper I was angry. I -- this -- as you know, you told me I would be asked this question just shortly before we came into court, and I've been racking my brains as to what this refers to. I have no memory, ever, of complaining through my publishers to any newspaper. That's not the way I would complain to a newspaper. I would go to the PCC or I would go to a lawyer, I suppose, if it was something terrible.

Moreover, I have now read this article and I can't see that there's anything in here that I would have complained about. It seems to be largely factual. It's all information that I had already discussed in other interviews in the early part of my career as a published writer, so I cannot see why -- what I would have been angry about.

But then while racking my brains it occurred to me. In 1999, when the third Harry Potter book was about to be published, I did tell my publishers that I did not wish to do any press, and the reason for that was that the phenomenon, if I can call it that, had really taken off, the books were selling very, very fast. I don't absolutely love giving interviews. Obviously it depends on the circumstances, but it's not my very favourite thing, and I just felt that giving more press felt like overkill. So I said to them, "Can we not say the books are selling very well and not do a big marketing campaign?" They were very understanding of that and I did one interview, on Radio 4, with Jim Naughtie I think and some children.

I think that what seems to have happened is that the Mail has published this article when I had not given them the interview at that time. However, I made no complaint about that. It may be that they -- it may be that someone at my publishers said to the Mail, "But she's not doing press", but I never gave instruction for a complaint to be made. So I'm slightly mystified.

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