Don't Make Me Arrest You, Potter

I do apologize for the lack of movement in the blogosphere lately.  I've been doing...  Actually I don't know what I've been doing, but it obviously wasn't blogging.

Well I'm done neglecting all of my writing projects, this blog being one of them, so here's a sparkly, brand-spankin' new blog post for ya!

By now most of the late-night Potter revelers are awake again, and I'm almost dreading logging onto Facebook to put this post up.

You know that I'm not a Potter Hater.  I've been to at least one midnight screening of a Harry Potter film (third one, I think) that I can remember, and it's possible that I went to another one and just don't remember it.  The midnight screening I went to for The Dark Knight is blocking out all of the other midnight screenings I went to before it, but that's a whole other story.

In fact, I love Harry Potter.  Always have.  I waited for my acceptance letter from Hogwarts when I was ten, and I held out until I was close to twelve.  (It probably just got lost.  They probably just got my name because I just turned eleven.  It's probably because I'm in America.)  I spent hours in my backyard playing make-believe Harry Potter.  I bought the computer games and screamed whenever I had to fight a gnome.  I screamed the first time Dobby showed up in the second movie.

I wrote endless stories about the Potterverse, where Harry was the villain and Draco Malfoy was infinitely more cool than he actually was in the books.  Ginny Weasley was my hero until she lost her personality in the 6th book and became Harry's little woman.  Neville and Luna were good replacements for Ron and Hermione.

I had a crush on Oliver Wood.  Big time.  When I played make-believe Harry Potter, Oliver was always my man.  That was until he disappeared from existence, so then I grew into Draco Malfoy instead.

I am a true fan.  I've been to midnight releases for the books, as well.  The Harry Potter series has been a defining part of my childhood, and one of my more favorite parts.  It helped me grow my love for England, which started with BBC Daytime programmes, and ushered me into teenhood as a witch at Hogwarts, which was a lot more exciting than a muggle in high school.

All that being said, I'm glad that the films are all finally out and that Harry Potter is, at last, coming to an end.  Jo Rowling has had an incredible, incredibly successful run with this series, and I can't help but drool in jealousy of all the successes she's had that a weenie unpubbed writer like myself can only dream of.  She's one of the few authors that bridged the gap between being a celebrity and a notoriety.  She's one of the few modern writers whose own face is recognizable.

Or maybe she's only recognizable to Potternerds.

(That's the nice thing about being a writer.  You're ugly?  So what?  The only time people see your face is if they go to the author blurb on the inside of the book jacket.  Even then, you don't have to have a picture at all.  Your face doesn't matter.)

But, like everything, even wildly popular fads have their lifespan.  Harry Potter has only lasted this long because,

  1. It's super long.  7 books?  That's ridiculous!
  2. The films were staggered after the first few books were written and published.  So, while the last book came out a few years ago, we're only just now getting to the last part of the last film.
  3. Crossover appeal.  Although it was originally geared towards MG (middle grade) readers, it was detailed and interesting enough that adults could read and enjoy it.  Not only that, but it covered such a large age group, literally following kids like me as we moved from MG fiction to YA (young adult) fiction.  
That and because JK Rowling made a ridiculously detailed, insanely creative world that took on a life of its own.

Of course there are those people that are going to hate me for saying that Potter has finally run out of steam, because the child inside them, the one that waited for their acceptance letter from Hogwarts when they were eleven, is yelling something about how Harry Potter needs to go on forever.  

No it most certainly doesn't.

Perhaps this is just the drooling, jealous weenie writer in me talking, but I think it's time for the Harry Potter empire to step down and away from the limelight.  I'm not asking Potter to give up his crown, by any means.  I understand that the crown must be won and taken.  I'm just asking him to step aside and recognize that his time is up.  

That's why I'm a little worried about this Pottermore site that's opening in October of this year.  I'm not sure what it's going to be, although there's lots of speculation going around, but I'm so afraid that it's Jo's feeble attempt to keep the series going.  For her sake, even, she needs to let it go.  If she never wants to write again, that's fine.  She could easily go into retirement and never publish another book.

Let's think about this.  Her life for the past twenty years has been Harry Potter.  From her first inklings of an idea in the early nineties to now, the release of the last part of the last film, she's been living and breathing Harry Potter.  

That's a lot of time to be breathing anything other than air.  A twenty-year Harry Potter high?  It's probably scary to think that there's actually an end to it, and I can only see Pottermore as her inability to let go.  "Wait," she's saying, "I've been thinking about this for twenty years.  There are so many details that I never got to share with you.  Wait, don't go!"

The nearly fifteen years that the Harry Potter books have been coming out is a long time, too.  And the ten years of notoriety that Jo has enjoyed is a long time.  She's had the ear of a portion of the world's children, as well as their adults, for ten years.  Ten years of people listening to her every word and wanting her opinion and idolizing her.  It's impossible for all of that not to reach your head eventually.

Jo, what I'm saying is that I won't be going to Pottermore in October.  I didn't go to the midnight screening of the last film.  I haven't been to a midnight screening in years.  I love you and all of the boundaries you have broken in the literary world, and the example you've set for all writers who write for the rising generation.  You'll be a tough act to follow.

But, it's time to bow out of the Potterverse.  Do you want to write other books?  That's fine.  I'll absolutely read them, because I know your prowess at world-building.  Do you want to be done with the whole thing?  That's fine, too.  I know you've made scads of money, loads more than I'll ever make, and you can absolutely afford to do that.

Let it go.  Let the Harry Potter Generation (that's me) immortalize you.  Don't let your baby, your twenty years of hard work, become the petulant, annoying child actor who grew up and still feels entitled to fame.  Go out gracefully, while you still can.

Don't make me arrest you.

Or give you a mustache.  Blast, I forgot the spell.

(P.S.  I've put up the pitches on Okeanos if you wanted to see them, and added a commenting section.)


  1. you grew up playing harry potter games? no way. me too. hahahaha. ;]

    but legit, i agree, i love harry, will always love harry, but he graduated, has awkwardly named kids, its time to let him go.

  2. hahaha oh yeah, baby. RP instead of HP. How clever were we?


  3. You get some serious points for this one Dain - I've been thinking along the same lines for the past couple weeks (also a matching post). Excellent post, my friend.

  4. Reading your post takes my mind to the fantasy series by Anne McCaffrey involving the world of Pern. Did you ever read those? Although the popularity is not as widespread, the Pern series has received incredible and lasting fan support since its inception in 1967. Anne McCaffrey is still writing the series...

  5. The Dragonriders of Pern? I've heard of it but never read it. I've read another series that she wrote (the Acorna series) and really liked it. And that one was more sci-fi than fantasy, and I'm not really into sci-fi.


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