In the horny imaginations of Harry Potter superfans, Professor Snape is a BDSM sex god and Hermione Granger is a squirter. So explain Allie LeFevere, Lyndsay Rush, and Danny Chapman, the hosts of Potterotica, a podcast dedicated to erotic Harry Potter fanfiction. For this week’s Sex Lives, the trio gave me a guided tour of the Potterotica universe — including dramatic readings. They explained why Hufflepuffs lack sex appeal, persistent psychosexual obsessions with Draco Malfoy, and how a Hogwarts-obsessed grandmother became the steamiest Potterotica writer on the web.
Maureen O’Connor: Do you know the authors [of the stories you read on Potterotica]?
Allie LeFevere: We actually get approval from all of the authors that we read. What we’ve done so far is two seasons — we’ll read one story over a season, one chapter per episode. And then in between seasons, we do what we call “one-shot stories,” where we do a sort of quick-and-dirty read of one-off fanfic stories. The authors are aware, and they’ve been so good humored about it, and really excited that we’re showcasing their stories.
Maureen: Who are they?
Lyndsay Rush: Almost all of them use pen names.
Danny Chapman: The current season is written by McTwist. Our first season was written by Ms. Figg, which is an allusion actually to Mrs. Figg, Harry Potter’s Squib neighbor from chapter one.
Allie: Ms. Fig wrote 112 [stories] of just the Hermione-Snape pairing alone.
Maureen: We have this idea of fanfiction coming from teenagers. Is that true?
Allie: We defied those odds in season one, when the first author whose story we read was a grandmother of 11. Which was a shock for us because we were expecting it to be teens, or to be like some horned-up 20-somethings. But it was a horned-up grandma.
Maureen: Why do you think that this genre of smut exists?
Allie: There’s a comfort with these characters. Like you already trust them, know them, like them, and feel like you understand their personality and the choices they would or wouldn’t make. And so seeing them in the bedroom is almost an extension of what you hope to learn more about. And I think it helps people learn more about their own like sex lives and explore.
Danny: I think it’s interesting because it does have a fun spin — just because it’s a magical world. Other erotica, like Fifty Shades of Grey, can be very serious, but this is fun, and you know it’s meant to be.
Maureen: It sounds like it comes from two directions: First, you’re just getting more of this Harry Potter universe that you already like. But I also wonder if, for people writing erotica or imagining sex, it might be easier to graft your imagination onto characters you already know? It’s interesting that you bring up Fifty Shades, because that started as Twilight fanfiction. Have you found the Fifty Shades of Potterotica, yet?
Lyndsay: There are some really good stories. There’s a story that we haven’t yet been able to get the author’s permission to read, but we’re like gunning for it. It’s a Polyjuice Potion story where the characters swapped bodies and had sex. That one was really steamy.
Maureen: What is Polyjuice?
Lyndsay: It’s where you assume the form of someone else for an hour.
Allie: You drink it.
Danny: There are two of you. There would be two Allies sitting here, if I plucked her hair and put it in the Polyjuice Potion.
Maureen: So Allie could fuck herself if she used Polyjuice Potion?
Allie: Yes. I could fuck myself.