J.K. Rowling has rushed to make an apology on Twitter, after sharing an expletive-laden missive about “fucking up” transphobes while replying to a child.

The Harry Potter author is currently running a competition for fans to illustrate her new story, The Ickabog, and sharing her favourites on social media.

In a now-deleted Tweet directed at a nine-year-old, Rowling wrote:

“I love this truly fabulous Ickabog, with it bat ears, mismatched eyes and terrifying bloodstained teeth! In court, Wolf claimed the Facebook post in which he’d said he wanted to ‘fuck up some TERFs’ was just ‘bravado.’ #TheIckabog” 

The fact that she added the hashtag after all that is the cherry on top of this truly deranged sundae. She quickly realised her error and deleted the Tweet, but of course, it was screengrabbed and shared around, and now here we are.

The ‘Wolf’ mentioned in the Tweet is activist Tara Wolf, who was convicted of assaulting 61-year-old Maria Maclachlan, as Maclachlan attempted to film protesters at a demonstration in London’s Hyde Park.

Rowling has since clarified her remarks, saying: “Sorry about the random and totally unconnected sentence that made its way in there. I accidentally pasted in part of a very un-Ickaboggish message I’d just received.”

The author has been accused of transphobia in the past, and has come under fire for following and supporting accounts run by TERFs, an acronym for the term trans-exclusionary radical feminists.

Rowling previously came under fire for liking a tweet that labelled trans women “men in dresses”, an also Tweeted in support of Maya Forstater, who was fired after claiming that “men cannot change into women.”

After today’s Tweet, many followers asked her why she was messaging about the Maya Wolf case, and she bristled in response, saying:

“I’m going to say this once and I’m going to say it calmly and politely. I certainly didn’t mean to paste a quotation from a message about the assault of Maria Maclaughlin into a tweet to a child, especially given the language used by the person convicted of the crime … However, I am not – as many of the people now swarming into my mentions seem to think – ashamed of reading about the assault. You should know by now that accusations of thought crime leave me cold. Take your censorship and authoritarianism elsewhere. They don’t work on me.”

Image: Getty Images / Dia Dipasupil