Manchester - Marlboro Lights - Matthewson, Emma - McGonagall, Sir William Topaz - Melling, Harry - Mitford, Jessica - Mnemosyne - Monty Python - Mortemore, Sally - Mortlake - MS Society Scotland - Murray, David Gordon Rowling - Murray, Devon - Murray, Mackenzie Jean Rowling - Murray, Neil - Music favourites
In 1990, Rowling followed her long-term boyfriend from her Exeter days to Manchester in England's industrial northern region. It was on a train delay from Manchester back to London that Rowling first had the inspiration for Harry Potter and began to plot out the novels.
Brand of cigarette JKR smoked. She apologizes for the habit and admits to being "a flawed role model" (WP1). According to her website, Jo quit smoking several years ago and now chews a lot of gum and plays Minesweeper (JKR).
Matthewson is Commissioning Editor at Bloomsbury Publishing, UK. She is the chief editor of the Harry Potter novels at Bloomsbury. She began her career with children’s books in the publishing industry as Editorial Secretary at independent publisher Blackie Children’s Books and then spent five years at Penguin, before moving to Bloomsbury (Interview for kidbookpros, 2001: http://www.scbwifrance.com/meetthepros/interviews_2000_01/emma_matthewson.htm).
The gonnagles of the Nac Mac Feegle in Terry Pratchett's excellent Discworld novels - battle poets who when on form can make an enemy's ears explode - are a more direct reference to the same awful poet. Consequently, we recommend consulting the Annotated Pratchett File's entry on The Wee Free Men for further information. Consider yourself warned - examples of McGonagall's "poetry" are provided, so you may wish to put on ear protection before proceeding further.
Mitford, Jessica (1917 - 1996)
JKR named her daughter Jessica after her heroine, Jessica (Decca) Mitford and gave her daughter a copy of Mitford's autobiographical account Hons and Rebels (1960) for her christening gift ("From the dole to Hollywood," Elisabeth Dunn, The Electronic Telegraph, 2 August 1997). Decca was the fifth of six sisters (and one brother). The sisters in particular led very controversial and/or influential lives in the first half of twentieth-century England. Their lives are chronicled in a recent biography by Mary S. Lovell (The Sisters: The Saga of the Mitford Family). The Mitfords were made notorious by Nancy's brilliant novels, Diana's marriage to Sir Oswald Mosley (leader of the British Fascist Party), Unity's infatuation with Hitler and subsequent suicide attempt, Debo's marriage to a duke, and Jessica's passionate commitment to communism. Mitford exhibited bravery and idealism, both of which are qualities JKR most admires (Sch2). Additional information about the fascinating life of Jessica Mitford can be found at: http://www.mitford.org/index1.html
A village in Surrey near London, which in the late sixteenth century was the home of the scholar Dr. John Dee. Dee was a mathematician, natural philosopher, and student of the occult, and turned down offers of mathematical professorships at various universities to eventually attach himself to the royal court of England, where among other things he served as astrologer to Queen Mary I (which once led to his temporary imprisonment on the charge of being a conjurer) and as a scientific and medical adviser to her successor, Queen Elizabeth I. He is thought to have been the model for the character of Prospero the magician in Shakespeare's play The Tempest.
He worked hard to promote the study of mathematics for practical uses such as navigation. He also kept a laboratory and what was then the largest private library in the country at Mortlake, and was generous in helping other scholars, which has led to some descriptions of Mortlake as one of the earliest think tanks. (Encyclopedia Brittanica)
See Mortlake for JKR's reference to this place.
MS Society Scotland
Rowling's mother died of respiratory failure linked to multiple sclerosis at age 45 in 1990, and JKR serves as a patron for MS Society Scotland (taking on this role in 2000). She has campaigned and fundraised for this charity with great enthusiasm. Scotland has the highest incidence of multiple sclerosis of any country in the world. Rowling opened a new £250,000 ($375,000) resource center for MS sufferers in Aberdeen in April 2001 (SS_JKRB).
Born in October 1988 in County Kildare, Ireland, Devon Murray was cast as Seamus Finnigan in the Harry Potter films. Further information can be found at: http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0614912/
Murray, Mackenzie Jean Rowling
Daughter of Joanne Rowling and Neil Murray, Mackenzie Jean Rowling Murray was born in January 2005 and is therefore the subject of the dedication of HBP, which was completed not long before she was born and published a little less than six months later.
Joanne Rowling married Dr. Neil Murray on 26 December 2001 (Boxing Day) at Killiechassie House, the country home she and Neil purchased earlier that year in Aberfeldy, Perthshire, Scotland. Dr. Murray was working as a senior house officer in anesthetics at an Edinburgh hospital when he first met JKR, and he later went on to study for a general practice. The media have made much of his resemblance to an adult Harry Potter (J.K. Rowling: A Biography, Connie Ann Kirk, Greenwood Press, 2003).
Rowling listed the following songs or works as amongst her favorites: "Requiem Mass in D Minor" (Mozart); "Come Together" (The Beatles); "Bigmouth Strikes Again" (The Smiths); “Appassionata Sonata” (Beethoven); “Violin concerto in D Major” (Tchaikovsky); “Everybody Hurts” (REM); “Guilt” (Marianne Faithfull); and “All Along the Watchtower” (Jimi Hendrix) (SS_JKRB).