Today is Harry Potter’s birthday, so to celebrate at Pages Unbound, we’re featuring a day of posts related to Harry and his world!
Harry Potter was never just a story. It was a world. And, for much of my generation, it was the most defining pop culture aspect of our childhoods. I literally grew up with Harry, starting the books at the same age he started Hogwarts and graduating high school the year he vanquished Voldemort for the last time.
Hogwarts was magical, not only for the obvious reasons (Quidditch! Animagi! Marauder’s Map!), but because I’d never witnessed such an international outpouring of shared enthusiasm and collective creativity. J. K. Rowling gave the world Harry Potter, but then the world made Hogwarts its own and made so much more of it than one person ever could have. Online fans explored the Sorting Hat process and wove original stories through RPG’s while college kids wrote musicals and formed university Quidditch teams.
It’s been a few years now since Deathly Hallows had its time in theaters. Rowling has moved on to other projects, and the first young generation of Potter fans is graduating from college. But, if you’ve grown up with Harry, you know he’s not going away. There is proof of that every time you nudge a friend when a brown-haired boy with round glasses walk by, or you slip words like “Hufflepuff,” “Hogsmeade,” or “Death Eater” into intelligent conversation.
Harry Potter is woven into some of my best memories, and I know I’m not alone. Good stories, good times with friends, and being part of something so big. That is the magic of Harry Potter. And it’s a magic that doesn’t have to end with the last chapter, or the last seconds of credits rolling across a screen. Here, then, are a few ideas to bring a bit of Hogwarts into your life when you need it most.
1) Make butterbeer. There are plenty of recipes online to experiment with, and you can always try your own, as well.
2) Have a Potter Party. While the books and movies were still being released, there were plenty of excuses to don graduation robes, play “Hedwig’s Theme,” and sip butterbeers. Now you have to be a bit more proactive and schedule the parties yourself. There are still many acceptable occasions, however, like Harry’ birthday (July 31) or the anniversary of the Battle of Hogwarts (May 2).
3) Write fan fiction. You know you want to. The world Rowling created is so complex and, well, magical, it just begs for more stories to be told. If you’re too embarrassed to post it in an online forum, write it for friends who are fans. You should be able to tell in advance who will appreciate it and who will just think you’re strange.
4) Take a sorting quiz. Or, if you’re more enterprising, make one. The quiz on Pottermore is supposed to be authoritative, but that is up for debate. (It sorted me into Slytherin! But I’m totally a Hufflepuff! What true Slytherin would want to be a Hufflepuff? Right? RIGHT?)
Anyway, once you know your house, you can accessorize with your house colors. A simple ring or fashion scarf won’t look odd to anyone else, but it will remind you of the qualities you admire in your house.
5) Get owl stationary. Subtle, but it will make you smile.