I have looked up to J.K. Rowling since I learned her personal story when I was younger. She was poor, struggling, and pulled herself up with nothing but her own writing talents. It was so inspirational that I wound up summarizing her plight as an answer for a standardized test in high school. She is the creator of one of the most immersive worlds in fiction, one that has affected me along with millions of others in the world.
I hadn’t even hit double digits when I started reading Harry Potter. In fact, I can remember that when I made it to my eleventh birthday, I hoped anxiously to receive a letter from Hogwarts. The best worlds are the ones you want to be a part of, and despite the evil wizard slowly making a comeback, I wanted desperately to join Harry’s world. A part of me still does, and I haven’t even made it down to Universal Studios yet.
There’s no need for me to rehash any of Harry Potter’s story. You already know it. However, I can tell you the themes are not dissimilar from something I’ve previously written about, Kingdom Hearts. Yes, this is about to turn into the oddest comparison essay you’ve read since someone in high school tried to compare George W. Bush to Gandhi. I’ll keep it brief, as I’ve tried to do for most of these posts. Seriously, I could easily double the length of what I’ve written. But that would take me twice as long to write, but would take you the same amount of time to ignore it.
Where was I? Oh yes. Themes. There’s testing the bonds of friendship. In Harry Potter, how often were Ron and Harry at odds. Or Ron and Hermione? It’s similar to Riku and Sora’s evolution from friends, to enemies, and back again. There’s love. Harry’s mother’s saved his life from the killing curse with love. Voldemort never was loved and that reflected who he grew up to be. Sora and Kairi’s love allows their hearts to stay connected. There’s light and dark. Death Eaters vs. Order of the Phoenix. Seven Lights vs. Thirteen Darknesses.
See that wasn’t too bad, was it? And I’m just trying to show how the stories that inspire me are connected by means other than my own personal fandom.
Harry Potter, being the first series of books that inspired me, had a huge impact on my upcoming novel. The focus is on a trio of teenagers because of Rowling’s model. Magic exists in my world, but its wielders are called mages. I wasn’t about to call them witches and wizards. The best story about them has already been written.