#FollowFriday: Scarlet Magdalene, Brandy Williams, and Laura Tempest Zakroff

#FollowFriday: Scarlet Magdalene, Brandy Williams, and Laura Tempest Zakroff April 6, 2018

Hello, beautiful creatures.

As I’m writing this, it’s Friday. It might be Friday as you’re reading this… or, thanks to the magic of the Internet, it could be any other day of the week. If you’re reading this far enough in the future, we may have moved past such plebeian notions as structuring our consciousness around arbitrary divisions of linear time… or, more likely, we’re in some sort of post-apocalyptic dystopia, and you’re reading this in an antiquated data-archive maintained by underground resistance fighters struggling to preserve any shred of the lost civilization they find.

Well, that got dark.

Anyway, it’s Friday and, therefore, it’s #FollowFriday! If you’re unfamiliar with this conceit, #FollowFriday is an Internet tradition originating on Twitter in which people recommend other bloggers, tweeters, and writers for folks in their social media network to check out and, presumably, follow. (The practice and its difficulties are hilariously illustrated in this comic by The Oatmeal.) As the name might lead you to believe, this is traditionally done on a Friday, so in the best traditions of #FollowFriday, I’d like to take a few minutes to pass some recommendations your way. The following bloggers are some of the sharpest, wisest, best-educated folks writing about magic right now, and I encourage you in the strongest possible terms to check out their blogs. Also, because this is the kind of love I have for you all, I’ve included a few recommendations for places to start reading their work. What can I say? I’m a giver.

And so, without further ado, go check out these blogs!

Scarlet Magdalene’s Tea Addicted Witch

Why you should read: I’ve been social media pals with Scarlet for a couple of years now, and I can honestly say that every single time I interact with her, I learn something. I was delighted when she joined us on the Patheos Pagan channel, and I’ve been even more delighted with every post she makes. (No pressure, Scarlet!) My fellow Magdalene has a strong background in Greek polytheism, ceremonial magic, and traditional witchcraft, both Wiccan and otherwise. She has that magical combination of a solid knowledge base and a sense of humor which makes for pleasant, informative read. In other words, she’s snarky, funny, and smart as hell. Also, her pieces tend to be on the shorter side, which makes them perfect for p-word folks on the go. They’re like little magical supplements!

What I recommend: Scarlet’s piece More Than Just Intention: What Makes Magic Work is a timelessly necessary curative for the notion that magic is the same thing as “wishing makes it so,” and I love her piece on Why Magic(k) Is Dead, which makes a strong case for deprecating and retiring the M-word altogether. (We’re of different minds about witch aesthetics, but I’m comfortable with that.) And at the risk of seeming like I’m jumping the gun, I’d like to point to her most recent piece (published today!), the aptly-named How Do You Get Better At Magic? How To Practice The Right Way, which I would recommend both to old hands and blushing newbies alike.

Brandy Williams’ Star and Snake

Why you should read: Regular readers of the blog are probably aware of the weapons-grade side-eye with which I view Aleister Crowley. With that in mind, I encourage you all to check out the writings of Brandy Williams, a noted and notable member of the OTO, a priestess of Ecclesia Gnostica Catholica, and a ceremonial magician and witch. Why? Because she’s a damned fine writer who’s been doing, speaking on, writing about, and teaching this whole magic(k) thing longer than some of us have been alive. For me, she highlights the ways in which Crowley’s work can be used in a positive way; she has a socially-aware, feminist, anti-racist focus to her work with which I deeply sympathize, and I applaud her efforts to enact those principles in a Thelemic context.

What I recommend: From a social justice standpoint, I love her article When your ancestors are racist, which outlines how white folks like me can engage with the racism in both our past and our present. For the god-workers among us, check out The best devotional method, an explication of the devotional magical practice found in Crowley’s Liber Astarte which actually makes me interested in reexamining the old guy’s work.

Laura Tempest Zakroff’s A Modern Traditional Witch

Why you should read: Tempest is a witch of many talents—artist, dancer, designer, and writer—and regular readers of this blog will be entirely unsurprised at my recommendation, given how often I make reference to one or another of her posts. She’s the originator of the term “p-word” to refer to Pagans, polytheists, and magical practitioners of various stripes. She’s profoundly wise, she’s got serious magical chops, and she’s funny as all git-out. She’s also a hell of a writer, and an all-around neat person whose work will enrich your practice and your perspective.

What I recommend: Honestly, most of Tempest’s posts are great places to start getting to know her work, but I find myself returning to two of her pieces in particular: Dark Deities Aren’t Getting Popular – They’re Necessary, which is the single best elucidation I’ve ever read of the attraction so many of us feel to the “darker” side of divinity, and We Are Aradia, which I don’t go a week without quoting in either my writing or my day-to-day life.

And there you go: three amazing writers to engage your minds, energize your spirits, and enrich your practice. Enjoy!

Until next time, dear ones, happy #FollowFriday, and happy reading. ♥

Get it? They’re cats… following a cat! Because it’s #FollowFriday! Get it? Oh, never mind. (Image by Phongwarit Suchart via Pixabay.)

About Misha Magdalene
Misha Magdalene (Seattle) is a multi-classed, multi-geek, multi-queer witch and sorcerer with a degree in gender studies and a slightly odd sense of humor. They're an initiate of multiple lines of traditional witchcraft, including the Anderson Feri tradition and Gardnerian Wicca, and have also been known to dabble recklessly in both modern ceremonial magic and grimoiric goetia. They've been blogging since 2001, negotiating the online world since 1987, playing Dungeons & Dragons since 1981, and listening to weird music since birth. They live in the Pacific Northwest with their polymath partner, their precocious daughter, far too much coffee-making apparatus, and a long-suffering bamboo plant named Smitty. You can find them on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Tumblr and Instagram, or lurking somewhere around the Seattle area, usually hiding behind a cup of coffee. You can read more about the author here.

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