I got my early access welcome owl for Pottermore last week, and since then, I feel like I’ve fallen off the face of the Earth. I didn’t Tweet much and I forgot to answer blog memes and write blog posts. It’s like I’ve been spending time in a different world altogether.
Well, Pottermore does feel like a whole other world, although it’s also familiar because I know the Harry Potter universe very well. The site is a great tool that will amaze first-time Potter readers and will enrich the reading experience of those who are already fans of the series.
Only “Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone” is accessible on beta so far, but a treasure trove of new info about Professor McGonagall, Professor Quirrell, the Dursleys, wands, and various objects and locations have already been revealed. (The McGonagall bio is especially informative and intriguing, and will really show you a different side of the stern professor.)
The truly fun part of Pottermore right now, though, is getting sorted and buying your wand alongside Harry.
I’ve always been sorted to Gryffindor by various sorting widgets and mechanisms (except for that one time I landed in Slytherin, and another when I landed in Hufflepuff,) but Pottermore sorting made me nervous because it was J.K. Rowling herself who devised the sorting method. What if JKR tells me I’m not a Gryffindor? I wouldn’t mind, except that it’s become a kind of personal belief that I’ve subscribed to for almost fifteen years, and it would’ve been hard to pack up and leave our cozy common room. Fortunately, the Pottermore Sorting Hat still put me in Gryffindor, though I have a feeling I was two answers shy of being put in Slytherin. Well, that would’ve at least made for an amusing personal belief change. 😛
As for the wand, Mr. Ollivander gave me a 10 3/4 inch ash wand with a unicorn hair core in exchange for 7 galleons. He described the wand as unyielding.
JKR posted info about the wand woods and cores on the site, and this is what she said about the elements of my wand:
– Unicorn hair generally produces the most consistent magic, and is least subject to fluctuations and blockages. Wands with unicorn cores are generally the most difficult to turn to the Dark Arts. They are the most faithful of all wands, and usually remain strongly attached to their first owner, irrespective of whether he or she was an accomplished witch or wizard.
– Wand flexibility or rigidity denotes the degree of adaptability and willingness to change possessed by the wand-and-owner pair – although, again, this factor ought not to be considered separately from the wand wood, core and length, nor of the owner’s life experience and style of magic, all of which will combine to make the wand in question unique.
– The ash wand cleaves to its one true master and ought not to be passed on or gifted from the original owner, because it will lose power and skill. This tendency is extreme if the core is of unicorn. Those witches and wizards best suited to ash wands are not, in my experience, lightly swayed from their beliefs or purposes. However, the brash or over-confident witch or wizard, who often insists on trying wands of this prestigious wood, will be disappointed by its effects. The ideal owner may be stubborn, and will certainly be courageous, but never crass or arrogant.
In other words: sorry, future kids, we’re gonna have to find a different family heirloom to pass along. 😛 I’m rather impressed, though, that the reading of the wand seems in keeping with the traits of Gryffindor House.
So, I’m gonna go back to the site now and try to earn more house points by brewing potions. Lately, the Potions module has been buggy, though. 20 uncredited House Points and potions + hours wasted waiting for those potions to brew = unhappy me.
And if it continues to be buggy, well then, I’m gonna go back to reading more Draco/Ginny fanfic.