The Art of Being Ginny Weasley

Aug 30, 2008

Posted by: John Admin


(Shipper alert! Beep beep beep! This blog post does feature shipping! Proceed with caution.)

I make no secret of the fact that I absolutely love Ginny Weasley (even amongst my Harmony-loving friends who are indisposed to liking her by principle). She and Ron share the place as my favourite character, and if I had to choose just one I’d have to give Ginny the edge. Ironically enough she is of course one of the least fleshed out characters in the story, which I guess is why so many people have a problem with the fact that she and Harry ended up together (but squeeee! OBHWF for the win!). And I have to admit that most of my “knowledge” about her character comes from the massive amounts of Harry/Ginny fanfics I’ve read over the years. I can’t call this real knowledge because of course it’s the fanfic authors’ interpretation rather than Jo’s vision of who she is, but I do think that in the good fics, a lot of her personality is accurately interpreted because they are based off the glimpses of her you actually see in the books. Ever since Hermione gave her the advice to just be herself around Harry and try dating other guys, Ginny has whenever noticed by Harry (which up until book 6 was not often!) been spunky, fun and kind ’ the scene that first comes to my mind is from Order of the Phoenix, when Harry is moping in the library and Ginny brings him his chocolate egg, after which they share this exchange:

“Are you okay, Harry?” asked Ginny quietly.
“Yeah, I’m fine,” said Harry gruffly. The lump in his throat was painful. He did not understand why an Easter egg should have mad him feel like this.
“You seem really down lately,” Ginny persisted. “You know, I’m sure if you just talked to Cho…”
“It’s not Cho I want to talk to,” said Harry brushely.
“Who is it, then?” asked Ginny, watching him closely.
“I….” He glanced around to make quite sure that nobody was listening; Madam Pince was several shelves away, stamping out a pile of books for a frantic-looking Hannah Abbott.
“I wish I could talk to Sirius,” he muttered. “But I know I can’t.”
Ginny continued to watch him thoughtfully. More to give himself something to do than because he really wanted any, Harry unwrapped his Easter egg, broke off a large bit and put it into his mouth.
“Well,” said Ginny slowly, helping herself to a bit of egg too, “if you really want to talk to Sirius, I expect we could think of a way to do it….”
“Come on,” said Harry dully. “With Umbridge policing the fires and reading all our mail?”
“The thing about growing up with Fred and George,” said Ginny thoughtfully, “is that you sort of start thinking that anything’s possible if you’ve got the nerve.”
Harry looked at her. Perhaps it was the effect of the chocolate – Lupin had always advised eating some after encounters with dementors – or simply because he had finally spoken aloud the wish that had been burning inside him for a week, but he felt a bit more hopeful.”

(Harry Potter And The Order Of The Phoenix)

The funny thing about this great scene is that it sounds as if straight out of a fanfic. Another scene which was noted as being almost like fanfiction is of course this:

Harry looked around; there was Ginny running towards him; she had a hard, blazing look in her face as she threw her arms around him. And without thinking, without planning it, without worrying about the fact that fifty people were watching, Harry kissed her.
(Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince)


A lot of people complained (or rejoiced) after the book came out that this was such a strange scene that they were sure they’d read before in a fanfic, but the truth is they probably had! I mean how many fanfics included Ginny becoming Chaser for Gryffindor, Harry finally developing feelings for her as she grew more popular, or their first kiss happening under such spectacular circumstances? Loads. And that was nothing but very good interpretation of Jo’s subtle hints that Ginny would end up being the perfect girl for Harry, despite all odds. I’m currently re-reading all the books and I never before noticed how positively Ginny is always described, with a pair of wide bright brown eyes, flaming hair and a blush like the setting sun (all from Chamber of Secrets). But just as Harry never considered Hermione a romantic interest, he never thought to look twice at the little Weasley girl who in his earliest memories of her gives him more of the attention he is so desperately trying to avoid. As she grew up and became more attractive and outgoing (cause let’s face it, she’s a hottie) she was simply not one he considered as anything but Ron’s younger sister, and thus she is only really noted as such, with fleeting mentions of her beauty and spark as seen through Harry’s eyes but without really registering with him. In the end it was the Felix Felicis which brought out the feelings buried so deep within him, the feelings that had been overshadowed by his infatuation with Cho and all the misery the poor kid had been through. But the feelings had always been there, and that’s what some people have trouble understanding. But I think both Harry and Ginny needed to grow in their separate ways before being “ready” to be in a relationship (much like Ron and Hermione did); Ginny needed to get over her fascination with what Harry stood for and realise that she still loved who he actually was, and Harry¦ Harry needed to get a clue. And he needed to see Ginny as the girl she was as well, and not as Ron’s clumsy little sister who looked at him with eyes as large as saucers. If he liked that he’d have been going out with Colin Creevey!

I think the reason I love Ginny so much is that
a) I understand her character because I actually wanted to know her, I switched from being a Harmony to a Hermywon (ohhh gotta love the shipper names eh?) shipper in GoF and needed someone to be with Harry, and realised how perfect Ginny could be.
b) She’s kind of sets an example for all shy girls out there. If you’ve ever had a crush on that “perfect” boy who wouldn’t notice you, and wished you could wake up one day and be stunningly beautiful and finally capture his eye, you’ve wished you were Ginny.

The fact that she actually got the guy in the end is very significant I think, and Jo manages to convey a very important message despite (or maybe because of) Ginny having such a small part to play in the narrative of the story. Unlike what I know a lot of people feel, that Ginny symbolises that perfect popular girl who of course gets the hero, I think Jo is telling us that by opening up and stepping out of your shell, people will notice your beauty and what a great person you actually are. Little Ginny Weasley, youngest of seven, only girl, elbow in the butter dish, ended up with the Boy Who Lived. Little Ginny Weasley turned out to be the love of his life. I think that is a great message to send. Ginny is like the everyman girl, the one who is always pushed to the background (without actually being a background character), the only one of his siblings Ron actually overshadows, and yet she breaks out of that. Behind Harry’s back she is suddenly the pretty, popular star of the show, and she didn’t need him to do it! And she gets her prince, Harry finds his equal in a family he loved so dearly, and all was well.

Gotta love Ginny Weasley. More power to the redheads! 🙂

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