The Hero’s Journey

To facilitate the design of the opening part of the book, the Team 1 at LPA talked about the paradigm of The Hero’s Journey as made popular by Joseph Campbell and introduced to the movie making business by Christopher Vogler.

  • Ordinary World
  • Call To Adventure
  • Refusing the Call
  • Threshold Guardians
  • Meeting the Mentor
  • Inciting Incident
  • Crossing The First Threshold

Rather than think about The Hero’s Journey in abstract, we throught about how it may have worked in Harry Potter.

Harry Potter’s Ordinary World is sleeping in the cupboard under the stairs, living a Dickensian life as an orphan.

There are various Calls to Adventure: the snake incident, the owls and the letters.

Refusing the Call: We think the calls are mostly refused by his family, who act as Threshold Guardians, although we noted that Harry does try to stay out of trouble. The big Refusal of the Call, is instigated by Mr Dursley, when the family runs away.

Meeting The Mentor: Obviously, Dumbledor is Harry’s main mentor throughout the stories, but he has many others, the first of whom is Hagrid. Hagrid comes to the place the Dursleys are staying and thunderously breaks down the door. This is the start of the Inciting Incident.

Harry again Refuses The Call, saying he can’t be a Wizard. But Hagrid asks him about the strange things that have happened to him, and Harry begins to realise it’s true.

Finally, the Dursleys – the Threshold Guardians – are defeated, and admit that magic is real and that he is the son of wizards, and Harry Crosses The First Threshold into adventure, going off with Hagrid to Diagon Alley and into the Special World.