It seemed like only yesterday I was picking up Philosopher's Stone, after hearing about the movie that was coming to theaters. I've been a fan since 2001 and I treasure every minute of it.
I was part of a vast community of others who, like me, laughed at Gred and Forge, cheered on Neville, and cried over the deaths of beloved characters. The Potter fandom community is a vast world full of different people of different races and religions. We all share one thing in common though, our love for the boy wizard in glasses.
Some of our very lives have been based around the book. I know people who have named their children after the characters and I myself have Potter pets!
My life was changed for the better after reading these books. I got out more to attend Potter parties, I met people who, like me, loved the books, and made new friends. Before I was a loner with nearly no friends and who didn't socialize. I'm still shy but I'm not really a loner anymore and I've made some wonderful friends.
What is it about these books that make them so addicting? Is it the fact that it centers around magic? Or maybe the world Jo spins us, with the smallest details (surfing budgies come to mind). Or maybe it's because the hero of the series isn't a bulky sex god type, but a shy, skinny, and geeky boy with a fairly common name. I love the idea that a small child who isn't a genius, grows up in a negative environment, and is just as flawed as the rest of us becoming a hero.
Maybe our characters have hooked up with people we didn't picture them with and at times you just want to shake a character into sense (OotP angry Harry comes to mind) but these are the books and we love them.
I want to thank all the friends I've made through the Potter community. You are all special to me and I wouldn't have met you without the help of these books.
It's nearly the end. Soon we will find out if Snape is really evil or if he's Dumbledore's man. We will find out what happens to Draco. Will we ever hear from Sirius or Dumbledore? Will Harry live or die? Will Umbridge get what's coming to her? Will Snape ever wash his hair? We will finally have these questions answered!
You were with me when I posted squeals over the books and the movies. Rants over the changes of the movies and just basic obsession. I wouldn't trade any of it, would you?
To the various fan artists and fanfic writers out there, you are all brilliant. I spent the time between Order of the Phoenix and Half Blood Prince watching all your journals and looking at your work, it kept my inner fangirl sane. I even got to know some of you and consider you a friend. The wait between Half Blood Prince and Deathly Hallows has been filled with stories centered around the Horcrux hunt, some stories terribly sad and others uplifting and all very beautiful. After the end of the series, when we find out what happens to beloved characters, the fandom will rise up once again and produce even more fanfic. May the fanon live on through all of you!
To the fellow Potterphiles who I have never met, you make the fandom great just being a part of it. Keep the spirit alive!
I would like to thank Jo, who will never see this but it doesn't really matter. Thank you for taking a train one day and thinking up this magical world and it's rich characters. You made me laugh and you made me cry and I at times and you even made me angry beyond measure. To bring a character like Dolores Umbridge to life and to write her out where I felt such a deep loathing for her, I applaud you.
Feel free to share with me your memories and thoughts on the end of an era. How will you be reading the last book? I plan on taking a few breaks so I can absorb what I've read so far, but I believe I will be finished by Saturday evening. I also plan on putting on music that is appropriate for the book. My phone will be on vibrate but I will only be responding to two people so don't try to contact me unless really needed. Any reviews, rants, praises, and basically just anything I write about the last book will behind a clearly posted cut.
Tomorrow at midnight, people meeting in secret places all over the country will be holding up their glasses and saying in loud voices: "To Harry Potter- the boy who lived!"