Name: Emily Snow
Wand: Pear wood with a unicorn hair core, nine and one-half inches, quite bendy
Patronus: West Highland Terrier
How did you get into Harry Potter?
My first exposure to Harry Potter is all thanks to my Grandma Irene. Grandma Irene is my dad’s stepmother. She was an analytical physicist who immigrated to the USA from Lithuania at the end of World War Two. Irene loved reading. She’s fairly blind now so she doesn’t read anymore, but she still loves books and stories. She would sit in the rocking chair in our guest room, I would sit on the floor at her feet and she would call me her “pet” and read to me whatever story she had brought with her. It was in this manner that I first heard the story of the Boy Who Lived. I was 11 years old, and while I had always enjoyed books I had not ever before felt a literary character was a kindred spirit or that an author was writing a story for me. Grandma Irene and I did not finish the book together, but when she left to go back to L.A. she left the book on my bed as a surprise. I think she could tell I was hooked.
That same tattered, over-read, paperback copy of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone is still one of my most sentimental and prized possessions. It lives in my bedside table instead of on the bookshelf where my fancy hardback copies of the series live in pride of place. I am sure I would have eventually picked up Harry Potter even if my Grandma hadn’t brought it with her for us to read together, but I can’t say whether or not the impact it had on me would have been duplicated. It lead to numerous very close personal friendships, my first real “crowd” that I felt I belonged to and eventually was a large part of my focus at Kansas University, where I studied young adult literature as part of my English degree. I still smile when I look back and remember that it was not an English voice, or even an American one in which I first heard the epic story told, but a soft Lithuanian voice that read to me for hours one summer when I was 11 years old.
What’s your favorite book in the series?
I could rate them all for your from most to least favorite but the one sitting at the top is always Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban.
What’s your favorite Harry Potter movie?
Order of the Phoenix. Though Chamber of Secrets is hilarious to watch in slow motion.
Who do you ship yourself with?
Okay, now that Christina has explained to me what this means and I’m done blushing, I have to admit that it would definitely be Hermione…or maybe McGonagall.
Who do you most identify with?
Neville. I always have. I always felt in school like there was a pop quiz that everyone knew about but me. I went to a college preparatory school for junior high and high school (we had a headmaster and prefects, I kid you not) and I always felt a bit out of my element academically. I had numerous learning difficulties that meant I had to do things a little differently to keep up, and many teachers lost patience with me, but around my third year I found my strengths and blossomed enormously and then went on to totally rock in high school. I didn’t decapitate any snakes but I could have if I had needed to.
Also, now that I’m a mom everything Molly Weasley ever did makes perfect sense. I feel like I could take a lot of pointers from her with my own kids.
What movie adaptation choice would you change if you could?
Okay, let’s keep this short. All of Goblet of Fire. Also in Half-Blood Prince, the fact that they removed my ALL TIME FAVORITE SCENE in the entire book series (when Dumbledore visits Privet Drive), and then added a completely useless scene where the Burrow gets firebombed. Who made that decision? Was there a vote? I cry foul.
If you could save any character that died who would it be?
Dobby. I feel like I should say Dumbledore or Hedwig (because their deaths choke me up like Dobby’s every. Single. Time.) but when it comes down to it Dobby was such a tragic little hero and I wish he was still alive mucking up the works in his own wonderful way.
Have you ever dressed up as a HP character?
I mean…duh. Of course I have. But I invite you to go take a look at my mug shot above. I look a LOT like a 13-year-old boy. So yeah, I have dressed up as Harry Potter before. He makes for a really easy and inexpensive Halloween costume for me. And gender-bending is sort of a hobby of mine anyway.
Which Quidditch position would you play?
Okay so I am not coordinated, graceful, or athletic. The last time I contributed in a team sport was softball and I was eight. So Beater maybe? That would make the most sense.
What would your favorite subject be at Hogwarts?
Probably Defense Against the Dark Arts, because let’s face it: I want to hex some people. But I would probably be best at Charms.
If you could have a pet magical creature what would it be?
Hippogriff. It’s a flying eagle-horse that you can ride.
If you could try one magical food or drink, what would you try?
I just want an invitation to a Hogwarts feast. I wish I could experience that and Ogden’s Old Firewhisky.
Which magical place would you visit if you could?
I would either want to see the other magical schools or I would want to visit Diagon Alley, because shopping.
What’s your best Harry Potter related story?
I was at the midnight premiere for Half-Blood Prince and the opening of the movie (first few minutes) played with absolutely no sound. There isn’t much dialogue in the very beginning and so we weren’t sure if it was supposed to be silent or not. Once the dialogue started and we realized there was a mistake many fans got pissed. The audience was in a total uproar and the theatre couldn’t/wouldn’t start it over. There wasn’t much dialogue that was missed but some fans were really threatening to blow a gasket. But I still giggle about it.