HogwartsProfessor: 11 Years Old Today

‘Merry Christmas’ to all of you on the nominalist’s calendar, believers and secularists alike! A blessed St Spyridon’s Day to any Orthodox Christian stopping by today, as well.

I have been posting online since 2004, even earlier if you include the classes I taught at Barnes and Noble University right after the publication of Hidden Key to Harry Potter at the end of 2002. But HogwartsProfessor.com didn’t take its present form as a WordPress weblog until 25 December 2006 when I wrote and postedWelcome to the New HogwartsProfessor.com!We were off and running that same day with my first thoughts about the possible meanings of the then just announced title of the Hogwarts Saga finale, Deathly Hallows[If you’re looking for someone to laud or blame for all this, Travis Prinzi was the webmaster who created the site as we have it, trouble shot the many glitches, and hosted it as well on a server for many years.]

So the site is 11 years old today, 12 if you live in Japan (where you are ‘1’ rather than ‘0’ in your first year of life). To mark this numerologically significant occasion I have gone all-in on the ‘Pillar Posts’ project. This morning I put up place holders in the dedicated sidebar for seven categories of Pillars with twenty-eight subcategories.

The answer to ‘why bother?’ is two-fold. (1) There are a lot of posts, currently 388 pages with 1,937 articles of various lengths, with a boat-load of quality content and (2), mixed together as it all is in the archives,  it’s very difficult to find the relevant posts on a specific subject. The searchbar, frankly, is undependable and scrolling through close to 400 pages in hopes of a ‘find’ is a task for mad-hatters and trust-funders. 

The project will progress in three stages. The first has been installing the sidebar widget (thank you, BlogMechanic!) and organizing and posting the preliminary place holders in sequence. That was the easy part I finished today.

The second stage will involve updating those blank place-holders with lists of urls for the subject and then organizing those lists into topic categories with short explanations and pointers about where to start. For a look at the url listing page looks like, see the ‘Literary Alchemy’ Pillar Post work in progress.

The third stage will be a proper introduction to the subject as well as an annotated index to HogwartsProfessor posts on the subject. I’m working on that for the Lethal White pillar to go up this next week. On larger subjects, this will take some doing but it is exciting to have started on the necessary journey of organizing the weblog after all these years.

Thank you to Travis Prinzi for his example, encouragement, and patronage at the start and through the years. Thank you, too, to the HogwartsProfessor faculty, especially Elizabeth Baird-Hardy and Louise Freeman, for sharing your thoughts here, and to the host of Guest Post writers for your various contributions.

And ‘Thank you’ most of all to you loyal readers, from the distant past before Deathly Hallows was published to those joining us for the first time this month to talk about Newt Scamander and friends in Paris. Your comments, corrections, and conversations have been the proverbial wind in my sails. The six books I’ve written and published since 2006 were all conceived here and much improved because of your feedback.

Thank you one and all for your patience with me since 2006, and, in advance, with the Pillar Posts project. 


  1. Thank you so much for your dedication ! You taught me so many things about books I love, about aspects of our life as human beings in perpetual evolution as Well as you taught me a lot about God through your analysis. Thank you so much! Wish you and everyone who works with you and all the readers a merry merry Christmas!

  2. Angela Tinsley says

    Merry Christmas and Happy Anniversary! I have been here since close to the beginning and it has been very eye opening to me as a reader and a Christian! I am now a Catholic and very happy! Thank you John fur giving me the Lit education I do needed and deserved but never had the privilege of getting in public school much less college! Happy New Year!

  3. David James says

    Merry Christmas John…..in the Western Church tradition…… and Happy Anniversary !!

    Ahh…. I still remember back in 2002-2003 when I was an Anti-Potter Evangelical teacher searching for why we must NOT read the Harry Potter series. Then I came upon a couple books by John Granger….Hidden Keys and Looking for God in Harry Potter and my life in fantasy literature changed forever. Here I am 15 years later speaking at Harry Potter conferences all over the country on why we MUST read the Harry Potter series !!

  4. John,
    Happy Anniversary! You have created a wonderful resource for serious readers and a community for fans of several different literary series. You should be proud of that achievement.

  5. It has a been a tremendous honor to have been included here on the wonderful journey that is Hogwarts Professor! Thank you, Headmaster, for your incredible dedication and patience, your brilliance and insight, and most of all, for your friendship and encouragement. Blessings to you now and in the year to come!

  6. Kathleen Van Every says

    As a Christian mom with very young children many years ago, I was concerned about the content of this new series. I read a book critical of HP by R Abane’s which seemed worthy. I listened to other mothers who swooned over the lying, the witchcraft, the alarmist theory of HP corrupting our children. Then I discovered “looking for God in HP” by an author I had never heard of. It’s not far off the mark to remark that it completely changed the literary trajectory of my life and that of my family’s. I am no scholar, but neither am I stupid. I critically analyze most things and raised my kids to do the same. I am so grateful for this website and its founder for opening my eyes to the world of incredibly smart and enduring bibliophiles out there! On the strength of John’s book, my husband and I(and he never wants to do stuff like this) drove into an unfamiliar corner of Philadelphia on a dark and rainy fall evening years ago. Entering a small room, we joined about 20 other people who had come out on that messy night to hear an unimposing man with a bow tie expound on HP. It was riveting. So wonderful to meet you before you became a household name! Thank you for your enthusiasm, steadfastness, tact, gentleness, and charm. Appreciate the website greatly although I rarely have time to do it justice properly.

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