WoJ on Harry’s Family

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Forum Timeline reply:
David Copperfield only adopted that stage name in 1974 and gained national recognition in 1977.  Did you have these dates in mind when you named Harry, and if so, does this give us an upper limit on Harry’s age?
Harry’s dad was acquainted with [David Copperfield] from the [Society of American Magicians] when both were at a similar point in their careers–just getting going.  Malcolm was a bit older and more experienced, but didn’t have the same kind of raw talent and had not had any major success or anything.  Malcolm had an enormous amount of admiration for the young performer (and may or may not have contributed the notion for his stage name).


Forum Post:
To clarify. :)
1) Thomas is barely anything at all under six feet high, when he isn’t wearing shoes.
2) He has “natural” blue eyes when he isn’t hungry.  They get paler and paler, based on how much he needs/wants to feed.
3) Harry, being freakishly tall, mostly drops people into “much shorter than me” or “a little shorter than me” categories.
4) Avatars!  Nifty!
5-10) Jim is humanly flawed. :)
2009 Lexington signing:
Q:  Does Thomas have a godmother?
A:  No.  Maggie figured he was a baby shark, and would be able to protect himself.
(Forum post lost to forum purge)
Thomas is a natural liar and probably lies to himself about some of his motives.

Astute, Gman.
2014 AMA
Did Maggie LeFay impart any important information to Thomas during the Soul Gaze?
Basically Thomas got the same stuff Harry did, along with “Look out for your little brother, Thomas.”

2009 Independence signing:
Q:  How/when did Thomas find out Harry is his brother? 
A:  Thomas was old enough to remember his mother, and obviously he wanted to find out everything that had happened to her.  He knew there was another child, and it was only a matter of time before he found out it was Harry.  There is a reason Thomas showed up when he did – he was there to help Harry from the start.
Q:  When Thomas called Harry from the storage facility and said he couldn’t handle “them” by himself, was he referring to Binder’s minions or someone else? 
A:  He was talking about Binder’s minions.
2010 Lee’s Summit signing:
Q:  Will Thomas’s memories of Maggie ever come into play?
A:  Yes, but it won’t be until much later in the series.
2010 Bitten by Books Q&A:
#97 “Would you ever consider writing another novella from Thomas’ perspective?”
Oh, absolutely. Probably will, in fact, write up a short piece or novella about what Thomas has to do to pay off Lara for saving Molly at the end of Changes.
Some 2008 booksigning pulled off of youtube:
Do Harry and Thomas have any other siblings out there?
2009 Kansas City Q&A @36:20
Have you read the Twilight series?
No, and I haven’t seen the movies.  Maybe when they make it to cable.  Although a bunch of people in Chicago made me write in their books that Thomas could kick Edward up and down the street.
2010 Mysterious Galaxy Q&A @5:10
Are Thomas and Justine ever going to have a happily ever after?
Thomas and Justine’s relationship is really weird.  I know what the relationship is in my head like right now.  Their actually happier now than they’ve been in ever.  But it’s all happening behind the scenes and nobody can see because Thomas has to have his bad ass vampire face on whenever he’s in public.  But when they are alone together, nothing else going on, their like totally cute.  Justine wears like these grownup version of footie pajamas so that she can snuggle up next to him on the couch and watch TV without actually burning him.  They don’t have like a normal relationship or anything like one, but they’ve kinda adjusted, their fairly happy.  You don’t go around letting the other vampires go “Oh how cute.”  I’ll have to get to that one of these days, Harry doesn’t see that.
2011 Naperville Signing
Does the relationship of Ebenezar McCoy and Thomas Raith ever come into play as grandfather/grandson?
That’s one of those things that’s in the future, that’s way more fun if you don’t get to find out about it. Unfortunately or fortunately, depending on your particular point of view on the matter, I think blood relations come into play and that’s all there is to it. One way or another, positive or negative, they’re there for something always, so yeah.

Maggie Jr.

2010 Bitten by Books Q&A:
#37 “what gifts will Harry’s child have? Like he isn’t gonna save said child-no matter what!”
Who says she’ll have any gifts at /all/? Under the circumstances, the gift of life is already pretty darned miraculous. :)
2011 NYC Signing Q&A
Are we going to see more of Maggie and is she a witch?
We WILL see more of Maggie and (sing-song voice) I’m not gonna tell yooooou.  But yeah, she’s definitely going to be a part of what’s going on.
Kansas City release party Q&A
As an author, when did you know that Maggie existed?
By book three. By book three I realized, “Oh, wait a minute, I have to do this,” because I remember there being some huge uproar on The List and I was still kind of keeping track of things at the time. There’s nothing that will get me riled up faster than a discussion on the Internet. There was somebody upset about the Laurell Hamilton books and going on steady with the argument that these books have devolved into BDSM* sex that have nothing to do with plot. So one of the counter arguments was, “How could you possibly have a BDSM sex scene that was actually plot relevant in any way?” *Jim makes the facial equivalent of “Well…”* It could be done, plot relevant, there you go. So her existence was planned – though the specifics didn’t get settled until a little later – but in book 3 was about where I figured it out
2011 Boston Signing
Is Maggie going to start playing a bigger role? 
She’s like seven! Seven year olds….seven year olds, you’re lucky if their big role isn’t falling off the monkey bars and getting a broken arm, like mine did when he was seven. But, on the other hand, if I’m ever done with the Dresden Files and I’ve got to pay off my gambling debts or something, I suppose I could always do Dresden: The Next Generation with Maggie, although she’d probably think Dad was a little soft

Maggie Sr.

Quote from: GnosisRoads

What death curses are able to do? How powerful can they be? Why don’t more wizards just use die as their curse? Its short and kills your killer.

They sometimes do. :)  See what happened to all the vampires around Simon when they assaulted his compound immediately prior to the onstage events in Summer Knight.

However, while taking your killer down with you might be the most immediately gratifying thing to do with a death curse (assuming that they haven’t up and prepared to defend against that kind of magical retaliation, which only a real moron *wouldn’t* do if they knew they were off to murder a wizard), it might not be the SMARTEST thing you could do with it.  Still, magic in the Dresden universe is only as formidable as a wizard’s imagination can make it.

I mean, Maggie’s death curse on Raith did /more/ than render him virtually powerless.  It freaking crippled the entire White Court by rendering its head executive suddenly unwilling to get aggressive.  It took that same executive’s focus and warped it from an outwardly-oriented expansionist agenda (What, did you really think Raith just bumped into Maggie at a /bar/ somewhere?) to one of frantic power-defense, paranoia, and infighting.  Had she merely killed Raith, another vampire much like him would simply have stepped into his shoes.  Instead, her curse sandbagged the entire White Court for two or three /decades/.

It isn’t until the events of White Night that the White Court really begins to . . .

. . .but perhaps I’ve said too much.   ::)

Anyway, Maggie’s curse, of course, also made Raith suffer.  Horribly.  It made him live in a constant state of drug-withdrawal-level hunger, and fear, and eventually reduced him to outright slavery to someone with centuries of comeuppance to dish out.  But that was just icing on the cake.

Forum Quote:

“Time runs at varying speeds in the Nevernever, too.  Remember that there was a reason she was called “LaFey.”  Ten minutes in some portion of the Nevernever where time runs at 10,000:1 or something could add up.”

2009 Lexington signing:
Q:  When will we learn more about Maggie?
A:  It will be little bits at a time, like we’re learning now.  But eventually we will find out that what we’ve been told so far is only accurate from a certain point of view.  It will all have a different meaning once we’ve learned the whole story.
2010 Lee’s Summit signing
Q:  Should Harry’s first deal with Lea been covered by Maggie’s deal?
A:  Not really.  One problem is that Harry dealt with Lea the way that one would deal with another human, so he really didn’t get much out of the bargain besides some confidence.  Lea gave him the “magic feather” so to speak.
And, Maggie could have done a little better job on her deal with Lea, but she was kind of in a rush, so she wasn’t as detailed as she should have been.
2009 Kansas City Q&A @37:15
Are we ever going to learn more about Maggie?
Yah you will find out more about her as we go.  In bits and pieces.  The problem with her running around doing secret things is no one knows what she was doing.
2010 Mysterious Galaxy Q&A
Do you have it planned out who Harry’s grandmother is? @6:05
Yes… Well she’s not alive any more.
Was she significant?
Well, she was a mortal.  That was about it.
Editor’s note:  There’s a 2011 WoJ Where Jim says if he remembers right, she died around 1810
After discussing Harry’s Grandmother:@8:15
Harry’s mom was around for a good long while before she had him.  I think she was a hundred and something.
2011 NYC Signing Q&A
Any word on Harry’s mother and whether she’s going to make it back?
No, they did a good job on her. Although they didn’t do a good enough job  as evidenced by the fact that her kids are wrecking people’s plans left and right.
2011 Bitten by Books Q&A
Dresden’s pentacle necklace — can anyone besides Thomas and Harry have access to his mother’s information? Or does it have to be someone in his bloodline?
That one is all about bloodlines, hence the use of a ruby.
2011 Bitten by Books Q&A
Is there any similarity (beyond the obvious) between the red gemstone that Harry received from Lea in Changes and the red gemstones that Lord Raith and Lara Raith have been seen wearing in the past, and if so, can you elaborate at all?
They’re rubies. The Raiths like rubies because they think they go with the dark hair and silver eyes to make them look stylin’. Maggie the Elder used a ruby because she wanted to create something that could only be used by someone with her blood.
How old were Eb and Maggie Sr when they first manifested a talent?
Same age as Harry–around 12 or 13.
Kansas City release party Q&A
Maggie LeFay, Morgan LeFay, is that a generational name, are they related?  
No, the “LeFay” is something that gets added as an honorific in the wizarding community, it’s one of those kind of mixed names that you give somebody that is sort of a name that she’s earned, so it’s a bit of status, and it also means you’re insane. Which everybody thought Harry’s mom was, being a big-time explorer of Ways and hanging out with Faeries and generally kind of doing things that most wizards considered to be pretty crazily, stupidly dangerous. When you’re somebody who can live for three or four hundred years as long as nothing goes wrong, you tend to be a little conservative, really, you get a lot of benefit from that. And certainly, in Maggie’s case, she was bucking the trend, and we’ll probably get into a little bit more of why she was doing that later in the books.
Salt Circle interview
Now, I think it was in book 1, we’re told very clearly that Harry’s father is dead, but the demise of his mother has always been more nebulous, has there ever been a reliable source that saw her die or did she merely disappear?
Oh no, she died died. I mean she died in childbirth, or shortly after but it was written down and documented and everybody saw it, that was out in the open.
2014 AMA
Did Maggie LeFay Intentionally and for a purpose have a child, Thomas, with Lord Raith?
No. She was having lots of awesome vampire sex and it sort of happened. :)


Quote from: Jaroslav on October 21, 2007, 09:35:47 PM

Maybe you right. But Toto, Abby’s dog from White Night, didn’t seem able to sense the supernatural. And he even had a magical owner, who while not strong by herself interacted with many other practitioners. So you think if the skill simply comes from being around magic, he would have picked it up.

Don’t forget, Toto was trained to detect seizures. So I don’t think it was simply a case of him being unobservant.

What, all dogs are equally talented, the way all people are equally talented?  Please. :)  Dogs who can sense the supernatural are all over it, when it comes to protecting their adopted family, but not all dogs can “see” in that spectrum, all of the time.  It doesn’t make them any less good or dogly, any more than Murphy is cheapened by not being able to hurl around cosmic energy.  It just means that it isn’t a part of what they are.

Cats are much more likely to be sensitive to the supernatural, but their reaction to it is considerably less predictable–anything from the fluff-up-the-fur-and-hiss to the yawn-and-go-to-sleep.  I mean, you just never can tell with cats, can you. :)


2007 Huntington Beach B&N Q&A
I wanna know if Harry is going to at least ask Bob what a Foo dog is?
He knows what a Foo dog is, it’s a spiritual dog thing… Chinese… But even so, Bob’s information on that is gonna be sketchy in terms of what he knows and what he’s heard.  Those aren’t the kind of stuff that you just run into anywhere in the Dresden world so (person in audience:  Unless your Dresden)  Well yah, unless your Dresden in which case well you know, you’ve got one that bails out in your car and hangs out with you.
Long story about how his 25lb french beshan frezae (can’t spell that) saved his son from a bear causing Jim to decide that Harry needed a dog too.
2009 Bitten by Books Q&A:
#31 “What breed of dog is Mouse? I mean, I realize he’s fictional in that he’s a Foo dog of Chinese and Tibetan legend, but what would be the closest approximation to an actual dog breed?”
A:  The closest you can come is a Caucasian Mountain Dog:
2010 Buzzy Multimedia interview
Does Mouse look anything like this?
jim holds a, 8 inch statue of a Chinese temple dog almost exactly like the right statue in this picture, but a darker bronze

Yes, this is a statue of a foo dog, or at least a replica of a statue, Mouse himself is a temple dog.  The way he looks in my head is he looks a lot more like a Russian Caucasian.  The Soviets bread them as security dogs, from Tibetan mastiffs, and I think Saint Bernards.  Mouse looks quite somewhat like this, if you scale up a Tibetan Mastiff, you get to Mouse Size, and that’s about where he is.
2010 Bitten by Books Q&A:
#136 “I am interested in knowing if we will ever get back to Mouse’s comment about “winning” Harry. I’m totally mystified. ”
It might help to know that while Mouse and Lea are both using the same word, winning, they are talking about entirely different meanings of it. As a result, Lea was mystified, too.
2011 Marscon
About Mouse’s siblings
he does have a bunch of brothers and sisters who wonder how come they haven’t heard from him. ‘You never howl, you never pee on anything….’  And plus, there is…uh, I will just say that the possibility exists that Harry didn’t rescue all of them, and if so, where are the others?
@longshotauthor:  Oh, wow, here is almost exactly Mouse: http://bit.ly/f6Ot9M

2011 Atlanta Signing
How about a short story from the perspective of Mouse or Mister? A day in the life?
I suppose it could be done.  Mister’s would be really freaky, because he’s a cat. [unintelligible]….he’s a cat.   I guess it could be fun writing that.  From Mouse’s perspective?  I don’t know, Mouse knows too much about what’s going on, he’d give it away. Mouse is actually far more clued in than Dresden
2011 DC signing
There’s a lack of Mouse in this book (Ghost Story). Are we going to have more of him, or is he going to be protecting Maggie from now on?
And the answer to that is: Yes. Yeah, Mouse was one of those characters that I wanted to create so that Dresden had kind of a home security system, ’cause otherwise, there are more and more of these bad guys coming that would just kill him in his sleep. It’s like, Oh wait, there’s a Foo dog there, that isn’t going to work
2012 Reddit AMA:
badowntown: Is mouse a Foo dog or a Temple dog? My understanding is that Foo dogs are Tibetan celestial beings, and Temple dogs are Foo dogs crossed with mortal canines (possibly multiple generations removed).
You, at one point, referred to mouse as a Temple dog, but Ancient Mai at one point in Turn Coat exclaims something like “That is a Foo Dog. Where did you get it!?”. Could you clarify?
Jim: You’re splitting hairs, here. They’re the same thing (for every practical purpose). A Foo Dog is a celestial being which chooses to give up its divinity (and immortality) to serve and protect in the mortal world. Part of being mortal is having offspring, who share in their progenitor’s power.
Marathonbrewer: Will Mouse continue to operate at Foo dog level now that he’s guarding Maggie? When he faced down Lea in Mexico she said that he was far from his place of power, but he replied that he cheated by living with a wizard. Does that mean he needs to live with a full-fledged wizard or just someone with wizard talent? Obviously he’d still be a giant killing machine with a snarky personality, but I worry that he might try to bite off more than he can chew if he loses the Superdog status.
Jim: Here’s something I’m not sure will ever make the books: Mouse draws the fundaments of his power from a house’s threshold. /Weaker/ at the /Carpenter’s/? Ye gods and little fishes, he went from Thing to Hulk when he moved in to protect Maggie. But, having grown up with a wizard who regards conventions as things to mourn as they are shattered into little pieces, and to speak nicely about in retrospect, he’s learned to use other kinds of power, too.

In making this compilation, I ended up skipping stuff about Mister because he’s just a cat.  But observing the amount of interest other readers have in him, I’ll add a section for him.  I’ll type up a few WoJ’s from memory, but I won’t be able to source them until later. -Serack
*Mister survived the events of changes!!!  “Mister is way too cool, we haven’t met anything that could take him out.”
*Jim has told a story a couple times how he based the name for Mister off of a cat owned by a guy in a text based MUD (Multi user dungeon back in the 90s).  The guy would sometimes have random text show up on the screen and would blame it on his cat “Mister.”  It happened often enough that when anyone accidentally typed gibberish, people would immediately respond with “Hi Mister!”  See Mickey Finn’s comments in the “Word of Mods” page for his input on the subject.


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