Harry Potter to live on in "Pottermore" website

Harry Potter is entering the digital age with lots of new material for fans looking for a fix.

The release of an online reading experience called "Pottermore" shows the creator of the wildly successful series, J.K. Rowling, still has a few tricks up her sleeve.

J.K. Rowling unveils "Pottermore" website
J.K. Rowling launches mysterious new websiteJK Rowling to reveal secret of 'Pottermore'

CBS News Correspondent Charlie D'Agata reports the online interactive game goes through the Harry Potter universe, where users with magical names can find new material from Rowling.

Rowling has written 18,000 words on Potter for the interactive site, which promises to immerse users in her world of wizards, combining elements of computer games, social networking and an online store.

Fans, D'Agata explained, can become characters in their own story and their own wands, and are assigned houses at the wizard school of Hogwarts after answering a few questions to figure out their personalities.

Rowling says the site includes "information I have been hoarding for years" about the books' characters and settings.

"(It's) a way I can be creative in a medium that didn't exist when I started the books back in 1990," Rowling told reporters, a way to incorporate the thousands of "stories, drawings, ideas, suggestions" she still receives from fans, four years after the last Potter book was published.

The website is free, but it's also the only place you can purchase Potter e-books for the first time in October, ending the boy wizard's status as one of the highest-profile holdouts against digital publishing.

The magical stories that conquered the world in print form will be available as audiobooks and e-books in multiple languages on the Pottermore website.

Rowling has kept devoted fans under a spell and in the dark for weeks with teasers on the mysterious Pottermore site. It featured a couple of owls standing guard over the promise "Coming Soon." It linked to a countdown clock on a YouTube screen where the announcement would go global.

The seven-book Potter series has sold 450 million copies worldwide, and counting. The movie franchise has seen a decade of success in Hollywood, as well. Seven movies have grossed $6.4 billion at the box office so far. The next - and last film - starring Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson and Rupert Grint, is "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2." The movie debuts in the U.S. on July 15.

But the problem with books and movies is that they always have to have an ending. However, through the Pottermore website and the game, the magic of Harry Potter can finally live forever.

The website goes active on July 31 - Harry Potter's birthday - but only to one million lucky registered fans. The rest of Rowling's followers will have to wait until October for the website's official release.

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