Next year, we have a Harry Potter play, a Harry Potter film, and a Busted reunion. I feel like I’ve time travelled back to the noughties and fourteen year old me, who would have been ecstatic (of course, twenty five year old me IS ecstatic too). It’s given me an opportunity to think back to fourteen/fifteen year old me and remember what I was like, what’s changed, and what hasn’t.
I mean, obviously the first thing that hasn’t changed is that I still get obsessively excited about these sorts of things. I’m still a big fangirl and I love it. I wouldn’t change that for anything.
And while many things have stayed the same, it’s also amazing to look back at the last ten years and consider what has changed for the better. Being a teenager is a horrible and confusing time, but also so full of wonder and hope that I think that’s why I like to keep writing about teenagers. I also had many amazing fandom experiences that I still relish the memory of, and sometimes, there’s nothing I miss more than settling down everyday to write fanfiction. I love what I write now, and I think fifteen year old me would have been amazed that I’ve completed books.
Fifteen year old me would never have thought that I would be writing for MuggleNet, a Harry Potter site that I used to visit. I never imagined that I would one day be one of those mystical staff members, who back then, I wondered how they had ever become a part of it. And now, I am a part of it. It’s mind boggling.
Fifteen year old me was obsessed with Mcfly, something that I was told wouldn’t last (spoiler – the obsession did last and I still adore them). Fifteen year old me was distraught when Busted announced their split.
But weirdly, Busted splitting turned out to be a blessing in disguise. One of the best things that could happen to teenage me. I was devestated, of course I was. I thought that the world was over. But it taught me a lot.
It gave me an experience of loss and a way of dealing with it – through writing, something that I’d always loved doing and was all I’d ever wanted to do (before I started writing fanfiction, I had been writing my own “novel”). But this set the path for a way of exploring my thoughts and feelings, which would later be so important – and I learnt a hell of a lot about plot, character development, dialogue, feedback, and so much more. Writing fanfiction was an invaluable experience, and I was able to channel of lot of teenage anguish and pain into those stories.
This was also my first foray into making online friends. I had dipped my toe into the Mcfly forums, a band I already adored deeply, but the Busted forums gave me a home and a family. There were a few of us left there, and we gathered on the fanfiction boards, until it was just us left there – everyone else had deserted the sinking ship. And so it was our little home and base. It’s hard to imagine how that would happen now – bands don’t have forums in quite the same way. I became close with this group of people, who taught me a lot about life and the world outside my little bubble.
And so, what would fifteen year old me think of me now?
I think she would be happy.
Although, disappointed that that book isn’t published yet….