Honestly it seems ridiculous that Harry Potter is twenty years old, but not as ridiculous as the fact that I am twenty years old.

Where has the time gone??? I thought in celebration of the boy wizard I’d share some thoughts on what it’s like to grow up with this series, and some of the different impacts it’s had on me. Here are some of my favourite memories:

– Having nightmares of yellow eyes when I watched the second movie

– Reading the last book on the silver seats at school in year four

– Doing a school presentation on Quidditch (can you believe this was in year ten)

– This enrichment day in year 3 with a two day Harry Potter program thingy. We had to make ourselves into a character from the series, and my name was Emvarti Meadel (which I still think is totally cool).

– Reading it so many times I’ve lost count.

– The Studio Tour in London, which was absolutely incredible, as well as the Harry Potter Exhibition in Sydney

– Being absolutely obsessed with A Very Potter Musical for a good amount of time (I’m lucky I still have friends after that)

Being an admin of a Harry Potter page when I was about 14 – sharing headcanons and doing trivia questions and having conversations with Potterheads, generally. My admin name was Tuney and my favourite character was Luna, which is where my Twitter came from (@theloonytuney) as well as my blog name (The Loony Teen Writer)…Loony Literate also has that link back to Luna!

I honestly don’t know what my life would be like without Harry Potter. 

It’s a big part of why I’m still so obsessed with books and reading, and without that, who even am I? *existential crisis ensues* Though it has its problems *cough*CURSEDCHILD*cough*, Harry Potter is such a significant influence on a lot of people, and I’m glad to have had that growing up. 

It’s fitting, I suppose, that I also talk about turning twenty, and what that means. 

When I was little, twenty seemed very old – you were an adult and you could do whatever you wanted. In a lot of ways that’s true, but I also don’t really feel entirely like an adult. That’s changing today, because of a lot of things, and the gap between “child” and “adult” has become increasingly wider. 

Even though it’s kind of sad not to be a teenager anymore, and part of the YA demographic, I’m really excited about what’s to come. 

Because now, maybe, I can be someone that teens look up to in this space. 

I’m not going to stop writing YA, and you can’t make me. It’s kind of bittersweet, really, this whole growing up business. A big part of me already misses being a teenager, but at the same time I’m already looking forward to new things I’m going to experience. Like living in France for a year as part of my degree (!!). Even now, Harry Potter is changing for me, because I’m reading the first book in French. 

I guess what I’m going on about here is that change doesn’t have to be a bad thing.

Growing up doesn’t mean growing away from, and I will always love Harry Potter. I still reread them all the time, and my sister is well and truly sick of me quoting the entirety of every movie. As long as we can keep pretending Cursed Child doesn’t exist, I’ll be happy.

Basically? Happy 20th anniversary to Harry Potter. And bring on another decade, because I’m excited to see what it has in store.