Carpe Diem (Harry Potter story)

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Title: Carpe Diem
Author(s): Imogen
Date(s): 28 March 2001 - 01 July 2001
Length: ~60,000 words (21 chapters)
Genre: Romance
Fandom: Harry Potter
External Links: Carpe Diem on SQ
Carpe Diem on

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Carpe Diem is a Harry Potter fanfiction story by Imogen and the first story in what became a popular shared universe. It and its sequel, Alpha and Omega, are two of the best known and most influential early Harry/Ginny fics.


According to Imogen, Carpe Diem grew out of an assignment she set for a high school English class she taught:

"I started writing it initially after I set a Year 7 class a homework piece to 'write the next chapter after Goblet of Fire' and said I'd do a chapter as well. As it turns out I got the class hooked, and they wanted more. So I kept writing what is posted on the internet as 'Carpe Diem' on the condition that if they all handed in their homework, they got another chapter every week until the end of term. And they all did. In fact, one Friday I'd forgotten to set homework and the entire class turned up on Monday morning having done something over the weekend!"[1]


Carpe Diem spawned an extensive shared universe best known for a characterization of Ginny Weasley that involved a predilection for stealing socks.[2]

The main series of fics in the universe according to Imogen's website is as follows:[3]

  1. Carpe Diem by Imogen
  2. Riverside Reflections by Imogen
  3. Invictus by Robert
  4. Alpha and Omega by Imogen
  5. Home is Where the Heart is by Imogen
  6. Through All Kinds of Weather by Alphie
  7. Nil Desperandum by Imogen
  8. A Pensieve Affair by Imogen

There are many other stories based on the universe by a variety of authors including Firebolt909, Chryslin, and Maid Marian. There have also been many works of fanart and even a musical composition created based on the series.[4]


  1. Imogen at All about me. (Archived 23 March 2003 by the Wayback Machine.)
  2. Gryffindor Tower's FAQ stated:
    [Q:] What's the deal with all the sock stealing? Is that in canon somewhere?
    [A:] No, that's not in canon. Most of us have read Imogen's excellent stories, beginning with Carpe Diem. She gave Ginny the habit of stealing socks as a personality quirk, and it caught on.
    See also We Didn't Start the Fandom, a filk by Zsenya.
  3. Imogen. (Accessed 10 January 2012.)
  4. Gryffindor Tower. The Carpe Diem Compendium. Archived 12 August 2003 by the Wayback Machine. (Accessed 01 April 2012.)