Magickal Women Conference

I’m a Magickal Woman! Which is to say that I will be speaking at the Magickal Women Conference in London next June. They’ve only announced the first set of speakers but I’m already excited at the breadth of fantastic women who will be speaking about fantastic women. I will be talking about sound in Leonora Carrington’s The Hearing Trumpet, an opportunity to focus on some of my favourite obsessions: Carrington, art, surrealism and sound. Very exciting!

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Hard-Boiled Witch: FREE!

The new episode of HARD-BOILED WITCH comes out this Friday the 13th so today the first instalment will be FREE! Pop on over to the Amazon page to grab a copy (click the picture above). See where it all got started! Tomorrow, episode 2 will be free.

Don’t like Amazon? Get a PDF copy direct by paying what price you will by clicking the green ‘Buy Me a Cuppa’ button to the right.

 Buy Me a Cuppa at ko-fi.com

HBW 5 Impractical Magic

Hecate Sidlaw would rather wrestle with her mugwort and nettle tea recipe than battle with a faceless corporation, but somehow she and her familiar Henry always get drawn into magical shenanigans around town. This time there’s something strange going on in the local farming community — do the crop failures have anything to do with the ritual revival of the old city arch?

Enter the dark streets and weird magic of HARD-BOILED WITCH and your life will never be quite the same.

This 33-page ebook single is the fifth in the series from the author of WHITE RABBIT, UNQUIET DREAMS, DREAM BOOK, OWL STRETCHING, and the CHASTITY FLAME thriller series.

“Laity has been proving for quite some time now that her noir prose ranks right up there with the likes of Meg Abbott, Dorothy B. Hughes, and Sara Paretsky.”
~ Vincent Zandri

Popular Occulture Write-Up

tirgearr smashwords sale

The sale goes on all month!

HBW 6 At Sixes and Sevens

It was great to get to Glasgow and see Jay! And of course to attend the Popular Occulture in Britain, 1875-1967 workshop, which touched upon many of my interests and current projects. See the full schedule with bios of the presenters here. This is just some quick notes on things that I want to remember: if you want me to expand, just ask.

“Eco-Feminism and the Neo-Pagan Movement”
Dennis Denisoff (University of Tulsa)

This gave me so much to seek out. Well aware of Moina Mathers, but new to me William Sharpe‘s pseudonym Fiona McLeod and Vernon Lee/Violet Paget. I really need to investigate Lee’s essays.

“Lucifer the Liberator: Satanism as a Feminist Strategy in Sylvia Townsend Warner’s Lolly Willowes (1926)”
Per Faxneld (Södertörn University)

Lolly Willowes shows up in the latest Hard-Boiled Witch (out next Friday!) because I read the book for the first time last summer and knew I needed to do more with her. Faxneld made a convincing argument for Warner’s renovation of Satan as an asexual figure and satanism for Lolly as the language of resistance and a kind of queer liberation (not doing justice to the presentation: I hope it’s published soon).

“Occultists’ Engagement with the First World War: Theosophy, Thought Power, and War Tactics”
Owen Davies (University of Hertfordshire)

Naturally Davies would be of interest to me: if you’ve not picked up his comprehensive book on Grimoires, you need to do so. This was a dense and detailed talk and I can’t possibly do it justice, but the distance between assumptions and actual evidence of people use and attitudes toward the supernatural during the war are very different from what one might expect.

“Aleister Crowley and Political Propaganda”
Henrik Bogdan (University of Gothenburg)

Not being a big fan of Crowley (though I swiped and anagramised his name for HBW5 too), I had no idea about his war time shenanigans in the US working for a German propaganda magazine. He thought he was using them (especially their literary mag) to get his occult theories out there but it required him being a collaborationist or as the post-war assessment of his activities had it, ‘a small time traitor.’

“Deceitful Media and Deceitful Mediums”
Simone Natale (Loughborough University)

If you’ve read White Rabbit you know how this topic interests me. Fascinating to see how controversy got manipulated both by the exposers and the exposees, from the famed Italian medium Eusapia Palladino to the debunker Hugo Münsterberg, who even wrote on films as manipulative. As your electronic PA if they believe in ghosts (“Siri, do you believe…’)

“From ‘Word Magic’ to Basic English: Language Reform and Magical Thinking in the Interwar Period”
Leigh Wilson (University of Westminster)

I’m still mulling this one over but it was fascinating. I’ve avoided Finnegans Wake in the way I used to avoid Beowulf, yet I’m beginning to wonder if that too has been a mistake:

For if the lingo gasped between kicksheets, however basically English, were to be preached from the mouths of wickerchurchwardens and metaphysicians in the row and advokaatoes, allvoyous, demivoyelles, languoaths, lesbiels, dentelles, gutterhowls and furtz, where would their practice be…

 

Visit to the Alchemical and Occult Collections at the University of Glasgow Special Collections: worth the price of admission (okay, it was free but –) so here’s the book porn you’ve been waiting for:

 

 

The Occult & Popular Social Movements

Today I’ll be in Glasgow to attend a day-long workshop on a topic of interest for several things I’m working on at present including the serial. You can see the full program here. It’s been coordinated by Popular Occulture in Britain, 1875-1947. I expect I will write about it afterward, as usual.

If you need entertainment in the mean time, check out my latest History Witch column.

At the McManus


The Beano takes over museum, but there’s also a portraits show on and of course old favourites — possibly obsessing a little too much about Duncan‘s Riders, but there it is.

 

Pre-Order: Inanna’s Ascent

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Out in July it’s the goddess-inspired anthology Inanna’s Ascent: Reclaiming Female Power. I have an essay detailing the inspiration for my novel Owl Stretching which incorporates elements of the ancient Sumerian tale of Inanna’s Descent.

Pre-order here.

Edited by Trista Hendren, Tamara Albanna and Pat Daly

Scheduled for July 2018
With contributions by:
Amanda Lee Morris, Annelinde Metzner, Annie Finch, Arna Baartz, Chantal Khoury, Daphne Moon, Rev. DiAnna Ritola,  Donna Snyder,Genevieve Deven, Glenys Livingstone, Ph.D., Hayley Arrington, Iriome R. Martín Alonso, Iyana Rashil, Jaclyn Cherie, K. A. Laity, Laura Shannon, Lennée Reid, Liliana Kleiner, Lori Newlove, Lyn Thurman, Melanie Miner, Melissa Stratton Pandina ,  Molly Remer, Nina Erin Hofmeijer, Nuit Moore, Patricia Ballentine, Sofia Wren, Sinem Koca, Susan Morgaine, Talia Segal, Tamara Albanna, Tara Reynolds, Trista Hendren and others.

Charms Conference #FolkloreThursday

Sneaking into the last few hours of #FolkloreThursday and finally sharing a bit about the Charms Conference I went to last month at Harvard. It was great: even better, there’s a proposed proceedings volume in the works so you may be able to share some of the exciting things I heard and saw that weekend. It doesn’t include a CD alas, so you won’t hear me singing a medieval charm* but I will write about the process involved. More pix going on the ‘book.

*Given the enthusiastic response, I am working on recording some medieval charms in a variety of ways. More to come —