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Pottermore – first reactions

JK Rowling has finally made her Pottermore announcement:

What is Pottermore? Pottermore is a free website that builds an exciting online experience around the reading of the Harry Potter books. Come back on 31st July to find out how you can get the chance to enter Pottermore early.

So, let’s see if I’ve got this straight:

The official launch is in October this year, but on 31 July, a lucky few can help with starting to populate the site. And beta test it, presumably.

It sounds like it’s part social network (seriously? Yawn!), part encyclopaedia (hooray!) and part fanficion site (err, okay?). If I understand it correctly, we the fans of Harry Potter help shape the future of the characters and the world by submitting stories to the site. JK Rowling herself will be adding things as well, such as all those facts she’s been hoarding over the years.

Pottermore.com before it was overloaded

To be brutally honest, it kinda sounds like what we’ve been doing at Rollspelet Svenska Hogwarts for the past seven years. SH is part social network (of sorts – well, it’s a forum and an IRC chat, but you do do a lot of social networking through it!), part encyclopaedia and while we don’t write about the characters from the Harry Potter books, we write about our own characters in that world, be they students or teachers of Hogwarts, Durmstrang or Beauxbatons, or adults in the Magic World. The only thing we haven’t got is JK Rowling participating and craploads of money to spend on web design and web development.

The good part is that it’s going to be free. That’s always a plus. I’m also looking forward to the facts Rowling will be dishing out. The fanfic I can really do without. It’s a wonderful idea, and I’m touched by the fact that she’s allowing us to basically have the things we write made into canon. BUT IT’S STILL FANFIC. And I neither read nor write the stuff, and to be frank, I don’t really give a stuff what happens to Harry’s kids, and the characters from the seven books … sure, but only if Rowling herself writes about them, basically.

I’m a bit uncertain at the moment. Feels a bit “is that it?” more than anything, and I think I’ll stick to SH. Unless, that is, this legitimises Merulafisk and would allow Leffe and me to self-publish our stories with it actually being set in the Magic World, as opposed to having to re-write it all for copyright purposes and remove all references to Hogwarts, Slytherin, and so on. If this is the case, I’ll be a whole lot more enthusiastic. Because that would be AWESOME, because then we would get to share it with everyone. Bring it on!

Traxy Thornfield

A Swedish introvert in Robin Hood Country (Nottingham, UK) where she lives with a husband and two cats. She's an eager participant in tabletop and play-by-post roleplaying, woodworking, photography and European travel. Will get a novel out one of these days, if she doesn't get too distracted on the way.

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