Monthly Archives: December 2017

Yule Tides

Merry meet all,

DECORATING THE YULE LOG

I found a suitable piece of wood from a fallen tree outside. I sawed it and returned home and set it aside. I brought it in when it got close to the Yule date and let it dry. I decorated the log last night for Yule.

I used a hot glue gun to glue the holly, pine and ivy to the log. I glued the long ivy branch to the log first followed by the holly and pine. I also glued a cinnamon stick and two pine cones to the log. It was surprisingly easy to glue the items to the log. I glued the painted pine cones to the log. The log is beautiful.

Holly is toxic to cats. I am careful about that. I covered my yule log and decorations with a towel last night. I am sad in a way to burn the log tomorrow because it is so pretty. It is a Norwegian tradition and I intend to follow through with it tomorrow morning.

I have posted pictures of the log on Facebook. I am happy to get to continue an ancient tradition founded by my ancestors. I hope the weather is clear tomorrow but it’s happening anyway.

I shall post the Rit details tomorrow.

Blessings, Spiderwitch )O(

 

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Magical Scribbles

Merry meet all,

Magical Scribbles

Writing about witchcraft is magical and hard work. Yes you can become a popular witchy writer. Establish a sacred writing space. Burn essential oils or incense as you write. Play soft music.

If you want to write about cauldrons, focus on its’ purpose, the significance of cauldrons, the lore of cauldrons. Write about how to clean a cast iron cauldron and how to burn incense, bark or resin in it. Or write about resin, incense and charcoal discs. Or the issue of safety and setting off smoke alarms.

Once you have polished the article, you need a market. I recommend reading the two books How to write for the New Age Market by Richard Webster and The Pagan Writers’ Guide by Melusine Draco. These books show you what to write and where to send your magical words. Some markets to write for are Eternal Haunted Summer Ezine, Sagewoman magazine and Witches and Pagans magazine.

The editors are swamped with writing related tasks. Write something basic to start with until you get a feel of how to write for them. My writing has appeared in anthologies and Ezines. Witchcraft is a mystery religion and the best way to know it is to live it. That is why many authors in this field get published in these types of markets.

The witchcraft and mind/body/spirit writing market mostly centers around non-fiction. The majority of the markets are in the United States and prefer non-fiction. An important question is what to write, why and for what audience. You are expected to know the difference between an athame and a besom, the Sabbats of Samhain and Beltane. In depth writing will grant you that coveted byline. They prefer that you share your research sources.

If you are aspiring to write a book on witchcraft, the best publishing companies are Llewellyn, Moon Books, Weiser Books and Avalonia Books. Avalonia publishes scholarly material like New Page books, Immanion Press and Inner Traditions. The best way to familiarize yourself is by reading what they publish. The pagan/ witchcraft publishing world is small. The editors are acquainted with each other. It is wise to cultivate a positive rapport with them.

Decide on the angle with your book or article. The market is replete with Wicca 101 books, witchcraft. Many authors are accomplished and have covered many subjects such as Christopher Penczak, Raven Grimassi, Laurie Cabot and Deborah Blake. Make your book unique and inspiring. They live what they write and lead magical lives. They have proven themselves to be authorities on what they write. If you do the same, you can achieve your dreams.

Keep track of where you send your writing and never give up. The most successful people are the ones who kept trying. When an editor expresses an interest in your writing, be ready.

The last stop on our broomstick ride is your perspective of witchcraft. To succeed in this market, have a reverence for witchcraft. To write for this market, you need to have an awareness for it and live it. Most of the editors and writers have a lot of experience and practice it regularly. They not only write it but live it fully and deeply.

Good luck with your efforts. Below is an example of an article for an Ezine. It demonstrates what type of article is accepted for publication. This article appeared in Crone Ezine in October 2012.

Grab your quills and magickal ink!! Get writing!!

Samhain is here. The last of the harvest is gleaned from the fields and frost glistens on ripe pumpkins. It is the time of year when the veil between the worlds is thinnest. Samhain is the Witches’ New Year and the time of the Crone.

Hekate is a crone goddess, one of the Triple Goddesses (Maiden, Mother and Crone.) She is the elder wise one who is relied on for her knowledge, wisdom and healing. Hekate is a guardian of the three-way crossroads and is portrayed as bearing the keys to the underworld, joined by a three-headed dog and surrounded by lit torches. She is associated with ghosts, the dark moon and magic. Animals that are sacred to her are black cats, ravens, owls, and wolves. This ritual is best done on any of the three nights of Samhain: October 30-November 1. (If you celebrate a “traditional” Halloween with trick-or-treaters or a party, November 1 is probably the best day for this solitary ritual.)

Prepare yourself by physically cleaning and purifying your home. Wash the dishes and sweep the floors, put the laundry away, and remove clutter and negative stale chi from your living space by smudging it with sage. Have a meditation bath to purify and prepare you, adding soothing essential oils such as lavender or frankincense to your bath.

Assemble your altar (if you don’t have a standing altar, you can prepare one on any flat space such as a chest of drawers or a table that you clear, clean and can decorate as you like. If you are expecting guests on Halloween you might want your altar to be in a private location such as a bedroom.) Decorate your altar area with items that correspond to Samhain such as chrysanthemums, mugwort, pomegranates, and pumpkins. Your altar cloth can be black and orange. Place pictures of departed loved ones on your altar. You will need four candles (black or orange), one placed at each cardinal direction (east, south, west, and north) of your altar.

You will also need a central candle to represent the Crone, a cup of liquid (ale is traditional, but apple cider will do) a cake, cookie, or other suitable food offering, and a bowl to put your offering in. If you like, carve a pumpkin and set it at a window to ward off the dark spirits, and to guide the spirits of the departed to your door. You may also want to burn spicy cinnamon, clove, rosemary, and/ or allspice incense.

Prepare a meal which you will eat (and share with your ancestors) during the ritual. If you will be honoring specific family members or friends that have passed over, it is appropriate to include a dish that that person particularly enjoyed in life in your meal). Foods that are seasonal in October (root vegetables, apples, nuts) are also appropriate, as is meat (if you are an omnivore) because Samhain marks the time when Celtic people traditionally slaughtered their excess livestock for food that could be preserved for the winter when plant life is dormant. Put a plate of food near (or on) your altar.

Now, be sure you will not be disturbed (put away your phone, lock your door) during the ritual and focus on centering yourself and maintaining a meditative attitude. Light the four black and orange candles (starting with the candle on the east corner and moving clockwise). Say aloud: “Hekate, goddess of death and renewal, on this Samhain eve, I do honor you, goddess of cronehood, the moon and the underworld. I implore you to hear my call. I need your guidance as I reach for spiritual growth.” State what you request whether that be a positive change in your life, a transition from a bad situation to a positive one or protection.

Light the central candle and put it near the offering bowl. Say: “I offer this flame to light our ancestors’ paths.” Dip the cake into the ale and put it in the offering bowl. Say: “I offer this food and drink to our ancestors tonight. May this food sustain you. Blessed be.”

Now sit down and eat your meal, putting some of it into the offering bowl for your ancestors. It is traditional to remain silent during this meal, listening in a meditative way so that the Crone goddess or ancestors can speak to you. (Meditating on the ancestor candle can help.) Be open to the messages that you may receive.

Once you have finished, thank your ancestors and the Goddess for their presence and blow out each of the candles one at a time, starting with the central candle and proceding counter-clockwise (the last quarter candle lit should be the first one extinguished.) Leave the offering bowl outdoors for the spirits and wildlife.

Blessings, Spiderwitch )O(

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