Potterhead July: How I Discovered Ships and Why I Blame Harry Potter

Potterhead July is a Harry Potter Blog Festival hosted by Aentee at Read at Midnight in celebration of the upcoming Harry Potter and the Cursed Child. Thank you so much for hosting it, Aentee! Click the image for the full goings-on of the month.

Once upon a time, there was an elementary school girl who didn’t know much about doing things on the Internet. In fact, there wasn’t much to do on her family’s slow connection anyway (Remember when your PHONE was connected to your internet? Lord, I do!), so she opted not to use the computer too often. And, like most–if not all–book nerds, she preferred to read during her pastime, not spend it playing computer games (though occasionally she did that, too). Now, this kind of sounds familiar, because for those of you who were slightly older than 11 when Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone (or Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone for the UK version) came out, it may be a similar story.

But I’m not here to talk about how I fell head over heels in love with the series. I’m not here to talk about my journey reading through these books. The former is obvious, considering I’m writing this post; the latter would require several posts and more than a few weeks, hah.

I’m here to talk about the other thing that the Harry Potter series–and, indirectly, J.K. Rowling–introduced me to: shipping.

Oh, yes, as a 13-year-old at the start of her hormonal journey, I came to a realization. I had romantic preferences in fictional characters. On top of story, I was also invested in who would eventually hook up with whom. I’d discovered my preferences when I read Tamora Pierce and cheered for the man Alanna eventually chose, but it was post-Harry Potter where I had a word to connect to the preference.

I was a shipper, and a hopeless one at that.

Pretty much this was when I started going online a little more. Waiting to find out how my ship would fare further exacerbated the impatience for the next installment. And let me tell you, before Fanfiction.net even boomed, finding fanfiction for your favorite ships meant having to abuse your good ole’ search engine. Not Google, either, because hell, that wasn’t even a thing back then.

Oh, no. Fanfiction came as a rarity. When I did find ones I liked (and boy, there were fabulous writers out there), I printed them out. Pages and pages and pages of H/Hr fanfiction (ha, y’all can guess which ship I’m shipping now, right?) can still be found in one of my storage boxes somewhere, because that was how I rolled. I liked something, I printed it out. I reread it a few times. Even now I don’t have any of my favorite HP fanfiction saved on my FF.Net account, and chances are most of them have been taken off already, or are totally outdated. But hell, thank goodness I kept them somewhere, because nowadays there’s just a TON of HP fanfic out there that deal with different ships–some a bit more disturbing than others.

So why do I ship?

Top 5 Reasons Why I Ship (Explained Harry Potter-Style)

“Dumbledore would have been happier than anybody to think that there was a little more love in the world,” said Professor McGonagall curtly.

I love characters. Main fictional characters tend to get kicked down a few times before they decide they want to kick back. (I mean, how many times did Harry get a smackdown before he finally told Moldy Voldy to stuff it where the sun don’t shine?) Sometimes the road to victory is a lonely one, and friendship can only go so far before the MC will need a stronger emotional tie as a motivator (Paraphrased: “Ron, I love you, but your sister’s where it’s at.”). Love goes a long way, and a significant other can do just that. So yeah. I like my characters finding people to romance. It’s quite lovely.

Still not a fan. But I’m okay with that.

I love the idea of romance. Not so much for myself, but for me, watching other romances take root is like watching somebody appreciate my baking. It’s just a reward in and of itself, and when the characters finally, FINALLY hook up, it brings out the squee in me. (I was SO HOPING Luna and Neville would eventually get together, because they were totally meant to be…and Lily&Snape? WTF ROWLING. WHY U BRING THAT POSSIBILITY UP AT THE LAST MINUTE?!). Shipping is sometimes the worst.


Declaring love is age-old cliche, but hot damn, some authors know how to write romance in so many different ways. Some use beautiful, lyrical metaphors. Some use actions. Some use blunt dialogue or, erm, interestingly muddled expressions (“Wangoballwime?” Oh, Harry, you tongue-tied boy, you). It’s always different, and that’s what makes it worthwhile.

Those romantic pickup lines, though. You cannot deny some of them are just swoonworthy and delicious. Or giggleworthy.

“Oi! Angelina! Do you want to come to the ball with me?”
“All right, then.”

‘Nuff said.

Some characters are just meant to be with other characters. I don’t care about love triangles so much because often I’m already set in my thinking. This is sometimes a weakness, because there are times when my ship doesn’t make canon. (Such is the case of Harry Potter.) Most of the time, though, I can kind of call the ship at this point.

Yes. I am a shipper. I ship things shippy. And I blame the Harry Potter franchise for doing this to me.

Do YOU ship characters in HP? Are they canon? Non-canon? Let me know!

17 thoughts on “Potterhead July: How I Discovered Ships and Why I Blame Harry Potter

  1. Harry Potter was my introduction to shipping too. It was my introduction to a lot of things, like fan sites and forums and fanfiction. When I first started reading the books, romance wasn’t the first thing on my mind, but I started getting into the online fandom around the same time puberty came around and I also started having more interest in romance. I was probably doomed to get really into shipping. Luckily, I never got all that involved in “shipping wars” though. I just enjoyed my ships, which was primarily the canon ships. At first it was Ron/Hermione, but while I continued to ship them, I wound up getting really into Marauders fanfiction on the fanfiction side of things, so I read more James/Lily fanfiction than anything else.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yeah, I didn’t get involved in shipping wars either. I figured if a ship wasn’t something I liked, I just shrugged it off and continued on my own route.

      Marauders fan fiction is awesome too!


  2. I do love my ‘ships. My favorite fiction is that which is not a romance but has a subtle romance B plot that I can analyze the heck out of, lol. I don’t know who I really ‘ship Hermione with but it is definitely NOT Ron. I did a re-read of the series last year and I found out I kind of dislike Ron to be honest. I could definitely see her and Harry together but I wish there were also some other more amazing choice out there ’cause Hermione deserves the best!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Haha, yeah, Hermione deserves everything. She is pretty awesome. I also like stories where romance doesn’t take over the overarching plot. It usually gives me enough to imagine in my inner mind theater.


  3. Ah, there was a time in my youth where fanfiction.net was everything and it was all because of shipping! I’m with you when it concerns love triangles, I usually am pretty devoted to one couple and it’s very hard to change my mind (like pretty impossible, I don’t think it’s ever happened). Enjoyed your post!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Haha, I can relate. I remember reading book six of harry potter and saying aloud, “Ginny?! GINNY?!”

      I’ve since accepted that not all my ships will be canon, but it still hurt my brain anyway, lol.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Harry Potter is what introduced me to shipping and fanfiction too! I was always a die-hard canon shipper though (with the occasional “Dramione”), and I just couldn’t understand slash most of the time.

    I loved the Marauders era most of all, mainly because we barely knew anything about it and therefore ANYTHING could happen. The possibilities were endless, haha.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh gods, yeah, the Marauders era was always my favorite to read and daydream about. We saw enough of a glimpse in the books but seriously, not enough!


  5. I have a variety of canon and non-canon ships – Harry/Draco, Snape/Lily, Sirius/Remus (they’re practically a couple anyway!), Teddy/Victoire, James/Lily – the list goes on and on. And never mind fanfiction.net – I was on harrypotterfanfiction.com. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh! I remember harrypotterfanfiction.com! I do think that was one of the places I’d read fanfiction before FF.net. I have started to warm up to Snape/Lily, and occasionally I did used to read Harry/Draco because heck, some writing for that pairing was REALLY GOOD, haha.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. There’s an amazing Harry/Draco one on AO3 that’s the whole series written as if Harry was a Slytherin 🙂 It’s called Leo Inter Serpentes, and the author has done up to the end of Fifth year currently.

        Liked by 1 person

  6. Ships are super fun, although I don’t remember where I was first introduced. It might have actually been the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series, although once I got hooked on FFN then I stumbled on the Harry Potter ships and was formally introduced. And let me tell you, there are some ships out there that just startled the heck out of me. From the background I was raised in I was totally unprepared for Harry/Draco ships. xD But, by now, I see that these are all in good fun and I like seeing the reasoning behind the ships people choose. The fandom seems to be exceptionally good at picking out fun love stories. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The slash-fiction surprised me quite a bit, too, when I first started. I was even more surprised at how often I then encountered it because there are so many fans who write slash characters! That said, a bunch of them have grown on me, and I can see Harry/Draco happening, especially when they’re written well (and I’ve read a few XD). But yes, it is fun to see people’s takes on ships, even though I don’t personally agree with some of them.


  7. Shipping can be pretty fun, especially when you see yours come to life. For some reason, though, I couldn’t really get all that into shipping. Harry Potter yes, shipping not so much.


  8. HP is also the fandom that introduce me to ships! My first ever ship, and still is until now, is Dramione. Sadly it’s not canon but at least they end up in good terms. Not quite friendly, but not enemies anymore. ALSO LUNA AND NEVILLE. That should’ve happened! I’m glad they made it canon on the movie 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Haha, that Hermione, we always think about who’s best for her. I can see Dramione happen though. And omg yes. I am totally for Luna and Neville. Just those two… Sigh.


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