A few years ago, I read some Harry Potter fanfic. Specifically Cassandra Claire's Harry Potter fanfic. People who have read it know that Draco Malfoy is a very major character in the series. He isn't whiny and awful like JK Rowling writes him; he's clever, sexy, sensitive, and just downright swoonworthy really (while still managing to be a bit of a jerk, of course). I was desperately in love with Draco for a while.
I later read interviews where JKR dissed Draco. She seemed frustrated that people like the character. She doesn't think he has any redeeming qualities and that girls only like him because the actor who plays him in the movies is hottt. (Or whatever.)
I've since reread some of the original HP novels and I really don't see anything good about Draco. It was CC's version of Draco whom I loved; JKR's is pretty much awful.
I've been reminded of the whole author's intent and reader's interpretation discussion here with my current project. I have a character named Kendall who readers seem to universally like. Many (but not all) are actually rooting for her to end up with the protaganist.
That is something I have NEVER envisioned. I mean, I love Kendall and I can see the chemistry she has with Seth, but I've known her secrets and manipulations from the start. I know all her plots and her true feelings. And I know that she is not going to end up with Seth (nor does she want to).
This past weekend, I turned in a chapter for my class which takes place late in the story. It is the climax where everything about Kendall is revealed. I fully expected that once readers found out the full truth, they would completely abandon the idea that Seth + Kendall = True love forevah.
NOT SO! One of my classmates (hi Liz!) left a comment after reading that chapter that she is still rooting for them to end up together! I was shocked! SHOCKED!