Book of Shadows.

I'm doing some more research for the book, which has hit a bit of the doldrums due to me not knowing how I'm going to pull off what I'm doing next.

So...more witchcraft books. One on Celtic Faery magic, "Elemental Power," by Amber Wolf, and "Witch Crafting," by Phillis Curott. Per the advice at the front of the Curott book, I've started a Book of Shadows, a place to collect spells, cosmologies, etc.

I have mixed feelings.

Pagans lately have been cheesing me off. As it turns out, they're as hypocritical as everyone else; turns out that such is a human trait belonging to no particular dogma. (Hint: If you can do anything thou wilt, don't whine about all the things you can't do. Cast a f@#$%^&* spell and get over it, okay?) There are things in the religion that I can't relate to, for instance, all the ritual. On the other hand, there are things I can relate to, like casting spells. I always believed in magic as a kid, and even as an adult I've done a few, after my own fashion. Some worked, some didn't, and the success rate seemed relative to focus and desire rather than chance. Not the kind of thing where you make pencils levitate or summon demons, but the kind where you affect your life in a positive way.

If I were Christian, I'd say that I prayed. There are similarities.

Anyway, the act of writing things down helps put them into my long-term memory (from a certain perspective you can say that, anyway). I'm still skeptical...not so much as to the practicality of magic per se (except on the levitating pencil level) as the necessity of all the setting-up exercises. Okay. It's symbolic. It's poetic. But if you have the focus and desire, you have it, and if you don't, a sprig of mistletoe isn't going to give it to you, and maybe you shouldn't be doing it.