I know its not actually his birthday, but its been 20 years since his world came in to our lives.
I owe the Potter universe and JK Rowling so much, who knows if I would be such an avid reader if I did not pick up those books when I was 11.
The characters in these books were my superheroes growing up.
The way I got in to this world was maybe quite different to others. I had been gifted the books by a number of people, but I didn’t read them, maybe I tried but I would get easily distracted when reading (I still do) so I never got far with the books. But then November 2001 we went on a school trip to see the Philosophers Stone and my world changed, I walked out of cinema thinking oh. my. god. why haven’t I read these books yet? When I got home, I went straight to my room and picked up the Chamber of Secrets and that was that, I was hooked. It took me a month to finish book 2, but then I binged the rest, Prisoner of Azkaban, Goblet of Fire and back to the Philosophers Stone all in a month and for an 11 year who barely read up until that point it a huge deal.
Then the long wait. It would be another 18 months till I could read another Harry Potter book. Harry Potter was my first fandom, I was up in all those forums, constantly checking all the latest news, the first fan fiction I read (which was completely PG) was Harry Potter related. The first time someone spoiled a plot development of book, tv show or movie was with Harry Potter (It was Sirius dying btw, I was so mad). Harry Potter was my gateway fandom, one minute I am reading the books then before I know it I am holding a sonic screwdriver on one hand a light sabre on the other, while waiting for the Avengers to come help defeat us from evil in this world. If it weren’t for my fandoms, I honestly don’t think I’d be the person I am today and it all started with this series.
So thank you to Harry Potter, I can’t imagine a world without it in my life, I would not be the person I am today. A few of the books are now in tatters, but I will treasure them forever.