I recently reread The Way of Four Spellbook by fellow Gardnerian Deborah Lipp. One of our coven’s Gardlings (that’s what we call our outer grove members) recently read it as part of her required reading. It’s an excellent introduction to practical spellwork. It is firmly grounded in the modern age (although she does assume that people still go to physical stores for supplies, when most of us nowadays would just Google them).
Interestingly, the Gardling was frustrated by the book. She thinks spells are best performed spur of the moment – while you are passionate and sure of yourself. For her, spell preparation and planning just dissipated her energy and her will. To me, this is a sign that the thing she wants to manifest is not her true will.
It is always difficult to decide what to do spellwork for, but that’s part of why spellwork is so effective. Sometimes the process of figuring out what you really want is the most effective part of manifesting it. If you’ve gotten to the core of your will, then your confidence and passion will only increase with time. Preparation and gathering are also important to the spell itself. Not every god, not even every part of yourself, will be convinced that this is what you really want unless you work for it. When you spend a lot of time or money on spell materials, different parts of yourself will recognize the priority you are placing on the task ahead, giving your spell more potency and power.It may sometimes feel that unplanned spells have more power. It is tempting to go straight home and do a general blessing for a friend who helped you out, and there’s not anything wrong with doing so. However, if you spend time to get to know that person well, find out the things that make her happy, write a spell, gather materials, and prepare yourself and your space, you will find that a well-thought-out and specific spell will make a much more powerful impact.