Her Campus Logo Her Campus Logo
Entertainment

J.K. Rowling’s Original ‘Harry Potter’ Pitch Letter Has Just Been Made Public & I’m Not Crying, You Are

Get ready for some major ~feels~ to hit, because it’s officially been 20 years since the release of the very first Harry Potter book, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone — do you feel old yet? Because same.

To celebrate, Hello Giggles reports that The British Library in London is showing an exhibition called, “Harry Potter: A History of Magic,” looking back on two decades of Hogwarts — and in case you weren’t already feeling nostalgic enough, it features (for the first time ever!) J.K. Rowling’s original pitch letter to publishers for the first Harry Potter book.

While some changes were eventually made from the original, the foundation is still the same — and TBH reading it is making me emotional.

“The Dursleys’ greatest fear is that Harry will discover the truth about himself, so when letters start arriving for him near his eleventh birthday, he isn’t allowed to read them,” Rowling’s pitch letter reads. “However, the Dursleys aren’t dealing with an ordinary postman, and at midnight on Harry’s birthday the gigantic Rubeus Hagrid breaks down the door to make sure Harry gets to read his post at last. Ignoring the horrified Dursleys, Hagrid informs Harry that he is a wizard, and the letter he gives Harry explains that he is expected at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry in a month’s time.”

Rowling’s original story idea even mentioned the now *iconic* characters of Ron and Hermoine. “Harry makes friends with Ronald Weasley (sixth in his family to go to Hogwarts and tired of having to use second-hand spellbooks) and Hermione Granger (cleverest girl in the year and the only person in the class to know all the uses of dragon’s blood). Together, they have their first lessons in magic — astronomy up on the tallest tower at two in the morning, herbology out in the greenhouses.”

Now that we’ve grown up being obsessed with both the books and movies for basically the entirety of our childhoods, it’s hard to imagine that this is also the pitch letter that was rejected by 12 other publishers before Rowling finally signed it — and I’m not crying, you are.

Caroline is the Evening/Weekend Editor and Style Editor at Her Campus, a senior public relations major at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a leather jacket enthusiast.  You can follow her on Twitter and Instagram @c_pirozzolo. 
Similar Reads👯‍♀️