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Mudblood, Muggle = Human? Were Harry Potter’s parents magical or ordinary?

Many people have criticized a point I make (in a checklist) in Jesus Potter Harry Christ that looks like this:
**Magic Father, Human Mother.

I was trying to compare possible points of similarity between Jesus and Harry Potter, so I used non-specific language that might apply in both cases. Still, feedback has been harsh and violent.

“Lily Potter was not human (a muggle), she was a muggle-born witch. When the first bullet point only 5 lines in is incorrect it raises an eyebrow.”

“Point #1 is incorrect. Harry’s not a “Mudblood” — his parents were both wizards. Funny that the entire supposed premise of the book is based on gross inaccuracy. Makes me wonder if the author decided to tack Harry Potter onto his otherwise-impressive book just to get it on the endcap at your local B&N.”

I used the term “human”, not muggle… Technically, all the characters in Harry Potter are human. But some are magical. I meant that his father came from a magical background and his mother did not. I do state things more clearly later one but needed something brief enough to fit in a checklist. Nor do I call Harry a “mudblood” (born of non-magical parents). However, both Lily Evans and Hermione Granger can be called mudbloods.

Lily was human and became a witch. Her parents were human.
What should I call her (without using HP-specific language)? How could I improve my bullet point to make it more accurate to Harry Potter but still reflect that “demi-god” comparison with other figures in mythology who are born half divine through a magical father?

Your thoughts?

How to sell more books and make more money online: tips from blackjack

For the past 6 months I’ve been sending out review copies of Harry Potter Jesus Christ and got enough positive reviews that it can now pretty much hold its own online. I’m not too worried about THIS book being a bestseller, because I’ve got several more in the works and I know that success comes with repetition. Right now I’m selling about 100 books a month – which is not enough to live on. But when I have 5 books out there, at 500 a month I’d be making good money. If I reach 10 books (as I plan to within 5 years) I could pretty much be a full-time writer.

So first of all, if you’re trying desperately to promote ONE book and have no plans for more, reconsider your future strategy.

That said, as my first book I’ve got a lot invested in this one and want to see it grow. How can I SELL MORE BOOKS? Advertising is expensive but it works. Here’s a little strategy I’ve used playing casino blackjack that may work for you.

It’s simple: spend all of your income on advertising.

Don’t jump into advertising by plunking down a ton of money on a marketer or book expert who says they can help you. First off, go to and pay 5 bucks for a few people to review your website, or edit your sales material. For $50 you can get 10 random people’s opinions and advice on how to clean up your sales page and information, which is vital to actually selling the book.

I’m not going to tell you what to do if your book sucks. If it’s a bad story, poorly written or poorly edited, OR if it has an ugly, home-made book cover, then advertising won’t help. (An easy test: try advertising $50. If it DOESN’T increase your sales, you may need to work on your core product. But hopefully it should increase your sales a tiny bit. Hone your pitch by linking your product to relevant current events and blogging about them. OK – so now your product is pretty good, it’s WORKING, it’s SELLING – you just need more traffic.

Writing blog posts, social media etc can all help with this. But advertising is easier and also can be effective. However you don’t want to throw your money away, so here’s the blackjack advertising strategy:

When you play black jack, the trick is ALWAYS DOUBLE YOUR BET. Let’s say you lose 4 out of 5 times. The first time you lose 10, then 20, then 40, then 80… but on that last hand you win 160 – winning back all you lost, with an extra 10. No matter when you lose, if you keep doubling your bets, you will always win all your money back. (This is infallible: unless you run out of money before you re-win your bets…which I’ve done before).

You can use a similar strategy when advertising your book:

1). Start with $100 (If that’s already too much, start with $50, or $20…) Spread it between Google Advertising and Project Wonderful.

Google Adwords: rather than allowing google adwords to advertise anywhere, in the beginning it’s a good idea to focus on sites that have readers that might be interested in your book. (If your book is about horses, google adwords will take the keyword ‘horse’ and advertise on a site for horse-racing or horse-meat). You can use the “networks” panel under your campaign settings to enter in the url’s of sites that you think would be a good fit. Choose about 10 sites and plug them in; now your ads should be displaying ONLY on those sites you’ve chosen. This will give you better success rates on people actually buying your book.

Project Wonderful Project Wonderful lets you pick websites or blogs individually.

Spend $50 on each and experiment for a month, or two, until you feel you’re getting the best value for your money.

Your GOAL is to be selling enough books to pay for this advertising: if you make $3 per book, you need to sell about 33 books to make $100 – then you can spend the $100 again the next month. IDEALLY, however, $100 will let you sell more than 33 books.

2). Let’s say you sell 100 books. Now, you should make about $300 – if you spend all that on advertising, (and you’ve already done your advertising research), you should sell about 3 times as many books (although actually it will probably be more like half, because some sales aren’t coming from the advertising).

3). So this time, you might sell 200 books. You should make, and spend, $600 on advertising. Next time you might sell 400 books and spend $1200 on advertising. Get it?
a) Don’t think about it as money yet – think about reinvesting your dividends until you push it into the bestseller range.
b) Don’t raise your advertising budget if you’ve had a slow month. Don’t be tempted to take out loans or use credits cards – if sales are down, use other, free book promotion tactics. Just try to invest all your sales profits back into your book.

Eventually – when you hit a goal you’re happy with (I’m shooting for 1000books a month) you could stop advertising (although – if it’s working, why would you?)

Other advertising things to consider:

a) When your budget grows, you should think about using or other blog advertising programs. Although more expensive, you can put your ad on select websites.
b) contact related blogs directly – sometimes ads on blogs can be very cheap!
c) Get your ads designed professionally. Picture ads work better than text ads.

Like I said, I’m currently on this path: current budget is $200, goal is to sell 100 books; then $300 next month.

Try it out, and let me know if it’s working for you!

Pottermore: What is J.K. Rowling’s Mysterious New Harry Potter Website – and will it launch in time for Deathly Hallows?

Recently J.K. Rowling started an online treasure hunt, giving clues to the top Harry Potter blogs which collaboratively spelled out “Pottermore” – a new Harry Potter website that, for the moment, just has a couple of owls and the words “coming soon.” What is J.K. Rowling’s Mysterious New Harry Potter Website? It’s not a book, she says. She’s also promised Daniel Radcliffe not to write another Harry Potter book (after she joked about it in an interview, he called her up in a nervous sweat and demanded to know if it was true).

My guess is this: Pottermore will be an online multiverse like World of Warcraft, where you can pick a side, a character, battle opponents, hone skills, form groups and take on quests. If it isn’t… well, then she’s missing out on a great opportunity.

What do you think it will be? Will it launch in time for Deathly Hallows?

Just released! Watch the 2nd Harry Potter Deathly Hallows Trailer

Here’s a beautiful new Harry Potter Deathly Hallows (part II) trailer. Looks amazing! Curious about the part where Harry grabs Voldemort, says “C’mon Tom – let’s finish this the way we started it: together” and then pulls him off the bridge. Don’t remember THAT in the Harry Potter Books. Wondering how faithful they stayed to the story.

Watch the 2nd Harry Potter Deathly Hallows trailer below and let me know what you think!

Last 4 minutes of Harry Potter Movie to be split into 7 films: Onion causes Facebook Outrage

The Onion recently took advantage of the recent trend to split books into several movies, thus capitalizing on and extending the life-line of Franchises like Twilight and Harry Potter. Their newsreport (which are becoming increasingly more convincing – you can hardly tell the following video is a total farce) claims Harry Potter 8 (part II of Deathly Hallows) would be split into a further 7 minutes. It’s pretty damn funny – check it out.

In fact it was convincing enough to cause a slight facebook panic among fans who took it seriously. Sadly, however, Harry Potter is coming to a FINAL CONCLUSION this summer and there’s nothing we can do about it.,20528/

Is Twilight better than Harry Potter? Celebrity’s answer for the 2011 MTV movie Awards

What’s better: Twilight or Harry Potter? While some fans are absorbed by the magical world of Harry Potter, the unique characters and challenges of Hogwarts and the Epic Conclusion of Deathly Hallows; others melt in relation to Bella’s Hunky Supernatural Companions, ripped abs of  Taylor Lautner and Robert Pattinson, and the complex emotions involved in loving someone that wants to eat you.

As a huge fan of both, I know that each has its own charms; but if I had to pick one, I’m pretty sure I’d choose Harry Potter. The MTV Awards will only be able to choose one winner however, and these two franchises (and their fans) are set to come head-to-head. Recently celebs were asked to take a stand – check the video for their answers!

UPDATE!: It seems Twilight won just about everything. Harry Potter did get one award though, Tom Felton (Draco Malfoy) won the “Best Villain” award. (Definitely deserved it!). See all the winners of the 2011 MTV awards here:

Spirit of Harry Potter Haiku Contest: Memoir to the Dead, who dies and who returns in Deathly Hallows?

The Tualatin Public Library held a Harry Potter Haiku Contest recently in honor of National Poetry month. Fifty haikus were submitted between April 15 and May 1 by students in grades six through 12 and were judged by library staff. Teen Librarian Aimee Meuchel, one of the judges, said they looked for haikus that captured the spirit of Harry Potter and followed the rules of haiku.

In Japanese the haiku is composed of 17 sound units divided into three parts – one with 5 units, one with 7 units and another with 5 units.

The winner, a junior at Tualatin High, submitted several haikus including this winning entry:

Memoir to the dead:
Dobby and Hedwig and Snape
Tonks, Lupin, and Fred.

What do you think? Can you do better? Here’s mine:

Jesus and Harry
Both died and came back to life
Both literary

Read the original article here:

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Taconite Review

Jesus Potter Harry Christ is something of a misnomer. Sure it starts with a literary comparison between the Harry Potter stories and the biblical Jesus stories but that is not where the focus of the book is. The book does start with a relatively short section documenting the links people see between Harry Potter and Christianity but then the largest sections of the book compares the bible with the literature and mythology that existed before and during its writing. Murphy’s basic premise is that if parts of a literary work existed before this work than it is a derivative. In a sense, he is correct but are Shakespeare’s plays derivative and not unique just because they use portions of pre-existing tales?

To communicate between people you need to have shared concepts. This means that every work written or created that can be enjoyed between multiple people has to have shared concepts. In a very real sense, any sufficiently complex story can be linked to every other. Carl Sagan showed this communication linkage very well in The Demon-Haunted World. He noted that people have always recorded unusual encounters that were outside of real world experiences. Two thousand years ago people would label these encounters as visitations from Thor or even angels. Today we call them alien encounters. The difference in labels is because the culture has changed and we need different terms and phrasing to communicate the same type of events. Literatures in use when the bible was written will show us communication at that time.

Murphy uses literary clues and methods to show that nearly every portion of the bible can be linked to multiple previous tales, myths and creations — a valid and an interesting task. This is also something that should be expected in a work as massive as the bible that has links over extensive periods of times and cultures. The bible claims to have a history encompassing Sumerian, Mesopotamian, Egyptian, Canaanite, Greek and Roman cultures among a few. It should be expected that those cultures would appear in the text with shared stories, bits and pieces. Murphy does show these links in detail. His depth of knowledge in the various literatures brings enjoyable details on how the various myths and stories might have became entangled.

The weaknesses in the book come about by the disciplines he doesn’t have detailed knowledge in. A complete analysis of the biblical stories has to have a literary knowledge but also requires a broad spectrum of other fields such as archeology, geology, sociology… Even number use and development becomes a factor. For example: Murphy traces the use of 12 zodiac signs, 7 planets in astrology… from more ancient literature to the bible. But those numbers are universal with people. Five fingers and two hands gives you the number 7 and two hands each with five fingers gives you the number 12. This alone makes those numbers important enough to appear over and over again in literature. He also places special significance on astrology and particular names given to star groups. This is an important factor in literature but the linkage between the celestial calendar and particular animal names is a lesser link. You can not link a particular group of stars with only one name. The small points of light in the sky are like the proverbial ink blots — everyone sees a different picture in them. Murphy uses Taurus and Aries from astrology as the reasons for sacrificial bulls and lambs in various religions but an even more compelling reason could easily be that the sacrificial differences were just the difference between the dominant herd animal from the different cultural groups creating the religions. The conclusions he makes using these other disciplines about the biblical story are lacking authority. This opens to book to unwarranted criticism but criticism Murphy permits when he tries to bolster his analysis with these fields.

Jesus Potter Harry Christ is not a book for your average reader. It is a readable literary analysis of the bible starting with today’s Harry Potter stories and bracketed in the past with ancient myths and literature. As a strict literary analysis, it is very good. It tracks a variety of myths and religions and shows how concepts, thought lines and stories became interlinked with the bible. Any biblical scholar, historian and want-to-be theologian can have fun looking into this text. Biblical literalists will have problems after the first page or two. I can recommend this book to any scholar wanting to view a literary only analysis of the bible. Since politics, religion and sports are three of the big subjects sure to cause a fight if discussed, be prepared for some intense feelings when you read this book. As for how this book frames the bible with history, archeology, geology…, you will need to look further.