A Writerly Update

So my best friend Sam just got an offer of representation from the fabulous literary agent Patricia Nelson. Sam writes lush historical fantasy and her twisted retelling of Cinderella set during the French Revolution with illusion magic and victim’s balls is literally to be guillotined for.  I am so proud of Sam and cannot wait to see her books on library shelves where they belong!  My favorite is still in the works, so I’ll keep hush about it, but needless to say, she is awesome!

I’m still waiting on about seven literary agents, from #DVPit request to two fulls and two partials.  From Brandon Sanderson’s agent to Meg Cabot’s agent to two new rock star agents, they are all really awesome and if even one was to offer it would make my life.  I mean, I’ve wanted to be an author since I was eleven and I penned my first space opera and locked my baby brother in the room and read him the entire plot of Jupiter Ascending mixed with the Book of Enoch that was my drivel of a novel.  Then I kept on writing, and writing, and writing, short stories and long stories and essays and poetry… and I’m still writing.  I’ll admit I’m stalling a bit on my fiction: my short story Ghazal hasn’t progressed past 2,000 words and Chwal and Space Oddity are still at 20,000.  It’s hard to focus on new projects when you have your manuscript out with four awesome agents and queries out with others.  You’re kind of in no man’s land, and you might pour all your creative energy into distractions, which for me means I go apeshit with poetry.

I’m probably a far better poet than I am a writer, and that’s okay, I’ve only ever finished two novels out of the ten or so I tried to complete from elementary school on.  The first got a lot of interest from Sourcebooks and Harlequin but unfortunately no one wants to publish New Adult romance, as that genre is unmarketable and as dead as a fish out of water.  Also, the writing probably wasn’t the best, as it was my first finished novel and not the most meticulously plotted, oversaturated with characters, and a bit juvenile.  But that’s okay.  I loved writing it, and my second novel is better.

Will Ivan Kupalo get published?  I have no idea.  I’ve had agents tell me the writing is lush and perfect but that the plot sucked, that the concept was perfect but the writing was unpolished and lacking, that the story was poorly executed or that the story was crafted perfectly but they just didn’t fall in love with it.  I honestly can’t revise when like twenty agents are giving me completely conflicting feedback, and there’s no point in revising when you have fulls and like five partials out.  One of my dream agents did give me a revise and resubmit, and if all seven agents fail I would be more than happy to edit again and revise – I am getting that itch, as I am constantly playing with projects, and Ivan Kupalo is in dire need of revamping with my newly acquired skills.  I’ve grown a lot as a writer since December, but I’m hoping to be doing editing from the other side of the fence this time – with an agent to guide me!

So where do I stand now?   Who knows.  Maybe this was a practice novel.  But I love the story I told, and the journey was worth it.  Things are moving along in my life.  I got a graduate teaching assistantship, full scholarship, and huge stipend from my master’s program, and I’m seriously considering becoming a professor of communication and doing the PhD track.  I have a wonderful man in my life that I love.  I’m independent now and supporting myself.  My kindred is doing great and my magickal abilities are intensifying.  The gods and angels are on my side.  My mental health is the most stable it’s been since I went to the ward at 19, and 5 summers later, after my bipolar type 1 with psychotic features, OCD, and panic disorder/anxiety diagnosis, I graduated with honors from the top school in Virginia, have been published in everything from POWER Magazine to Renewable Energy World, learned a lot of life lessons, taught myself to read again after my mind was decimated by illness, overcame bouts of depression and mania, and have become a very strong person.

I found a religious path that I have been meandering towards since I became pagan at 7 after reading D’aulaires, and my kindred has brought such joy and completion into my life.  I found my tribe.  I am training magickally and have cut out toxic people in my life and toxic spirits.  I’m learning to ground, to shield, to shamanic journey in controlled settings instead of dangerously astral projecting to the otherworlds and almost ending up demon chow or being dumb enough to invoke an archangel into my body by force and then have a seizure (I was a dumb 16 year old, okay).  I’m rambling, but really, my writing can wait.

I’m still a really shitty writer.  Most authors don’t get published until they’re 30 or 40.  I don’t think I’ll ever find my voice, as I literally have a hundred different writing personalities… but whatever.  It’s funner that way!  Point is, I’m still growing, and my writing still needs a crapload of editing before it hits shelves.  I’m not even halfway through my twenties and every year, my writing grows by leaps and bounds.

Someday I will be a decent writer, a decent poet, a decent blogger.  Maybe I’ll even get a novel published.  But I’m not counting on it, instead, I will just continue to write and enjoy living dozens of lives from New Orleans to outer space to mythical Russia to other worlds like Asgard and Heaven.  Writing for me is above all a spiritual endeavor: all my writing is pagan by nature, and all of it is a take on mental illness and struggles with inner demons.  I color my own writing, I can’t be divorced from the reality that I am a seriously mentally ill disabled writer that literally believes the gods talk to her and actually sees them in physical reality, does magick, channels deities like Loki and the Grim Reaper, manifests reality through intention, and considers some of the most eldritch spirits in existence friends or beasts to be tamed.  When you’ve been raised by the archangels and archdemons since the ripe old age of 2, you end up kind of… weird.

The divine is extremely immanent for me – I can feel and perceive spirits with all five of my senses, so of course I offer up my writing to the divine like Joan of Arc on a paper pyre.  Honestly, most of my writing is channeled, as as my gythia says, “You’re channeling all the fucking time,” and I do so without realizing it, but hey, it makes for a good story.  Words pour into my head through my crown chakra, poems bubble up from my heart, and the ancient ones rise up and paint my life in Joseph  Campbell colors.

Writing is a journey.  It never ends.  All I can do is enjoy the scenery.

Ratatosk Tells a Tale

“Do you think I was alone
when I hung on that windswept
tree nine nights, spear-heavy,
a sacrifice unto myself?”

“Never.”

“Frigga was my altar.”

Images flow through my mind of a young Odin, drenched in blood and wolfskins, Ratatosk at his shoulder as he drives his spear into the carrion of the slain, choosing only the choicest bits to go to Valhalla. The Valkyries carry away the Einherjar in a wine-dark ascendancy in sulfur skies.

The Alfather hangs from a yew. Ratatosk nibbles his one eye. The other is closed, turned inwards, meditative even. The globe of blue and blood will fall into a well, for squirrels plant seeds, and you can drink the gore from and know what Frigga sees from the High Seat, but it will cost you your life, and your tongue.

All it took was the beat of the buffalo drum, and I was under, swimming in a trance as my soul traveled the three upon threefold path. It’s a Valknut, it’s the ladder of runes, it’s just a poem. Yggdrasil blossomed and froze and all there was was the Light Elves, the Dark Elves, Freyr – or was it Balder? – being buried by the squirrel with curling golden locks, pale as death, to fructify the Earth.

“I am the Tree.”

“I am its guardian.”

“I plant seeds of Yggdrasil through all the Nine Worlds.”

Squirrels never shut up, do they? Neither do I. Perhaps the first poet was a squirrel spinning a story over a newly born sprout, urging it to grow, for though fierce and silly, Ratatosk is a gardener.

He chitters in my ear. The Blue Heron comes and says: impatience, but it is not my message. I get Odin again and again. Pretty soon I’ll be singing Ansuz and firing witchlight from my palms.

The visions soften, I awaken, but the Tree is still sentinel over my wanderings.

The drum stills.

Behind every regent, a powerful woman. Behind every warrior, a witch. Behind every dead man, animals planting their corpses into new life in another world. Behind every king, a queen he worships.

But I could just be bullshitting, for I am a squirrel.

Praying

You’re down on your knees sucking Mammon’s greedlust,
bathing in the blood of priests selling indulgences,
swallowing gold and burnt masterpieces into prisons
where beautiful things will wither in your dark gut.

Your black hair is wet now, and you swim in feathers
the most beautiful of canaries, they make you tremble,
contemplating how best to snap golden wings is bliss,
for women to you are dolls best broken, best burned.

You covet the ineffable, sweet dripping marrow, bruises
bring truth to the skin, so you bite me hard, harder,
red blossoms along with purple wine and yellow bile,
why do I just lay there terrified? Because I am dead.

I died the first time you touched me, I wept rivers
of pearls, got trapped in skiffs adrift on the Styx,
fangs were my truth, cruel cages and serrated limbs,
maybe I could have left you the first day by just
saying no.

Saying no.

Keep breaking girls, they are not my concern, past
my care, for finally I have a spine from your curse –
your claws ripped me apart and revealed diamonds
my white beacon blinded you, and I flew far away.

Keep jerking off to your ruined women, stay away.
Comatose poisoned madrigals best suit you, not me.
I was never meant for you, I am not Hell’s tithe,
my name is not Tam Lin, no, I am Janet, I saved
myself, myself, I am my own, and you are just
a bad memory.

So pray for salvation but know you don’t deserve it.

Turn up the flames and roast your desires to ash.

Drown in the bodies of your toys, I cannot see you
from my perch in Heaven, and you are just all Hell.

Just an aborted creation of Sophia whose mother
abandoned your Demiurge rot at birth, no solace
will be had in my arms, not anymore, so change,
beg for me, but never in a million scars will I
return.

A Warning Against Demons

Demons are a major fad amongst Millenials.  No longer do we bind them inside a circle inside a square inside a triangle, instead we watch hit TV shows like Lucifer and Supernatural, devour paranormal romance novels teeming with devils and angels, hang out with Goetics and make them into memes, and my favorite, actually be stupid enough to trust them.  Many pagans and Luciferians, Satanists, occultists, and demonolators work with or worship demons as if they were something to aspire to be, beings to be friends with or learn from, endless wish machines that can be granted after a single summoning, and by god, some even think they have morals.

True occultists know demons best belong inside summoning circles, bound and fettered, and any respectable Satanist will tell you Satan is a dangerous being whose flames are just as tender as they are deadly.  Luciferians admit Lucifer’s light can be freezing, that Lucifer can be calculating and use you for his own gains, seeing you as a pawn, and many serve him well.  But I want to dispel the ridiculous notion that demons are somehow innocent or will make an exception to treat you and only you with love while they Lourdes Possession it up with everyone else and abuse the shit out of humans.

Demons are not nice.  Demons are not your friend.  Demons are fucking dangerous.  I say this as a human that is extremely close to the Chief of Satans, Beelzebub, Asmodeus, and Lilith.  Demons are horrifying.  Demons are smarter than a billion Einsteins combined.  Every move they make serves their own interests, and if your motives align, then great, but if you cross them, you could literally end up dead.  They are capable of physically manifesting, moving objects, fucking with electricity, and even possessing you against your will and making you harm yourself.  Satan comes disguised as an angel of light, but beneath that gold veneer is rot and the abyss and madness.  The Left Hand Path is obviously a valid path, but you should never trust those spirits that initiate you into it.

I don’t care if they call you family.  I don’t care if they say they love you.  Demons are incapable of selfless love, all they do is covet, and you would be an idiot to think you could make them a better person.  I think I get along so well with demons because I know exactly what they are: the shadow side of God, dwellers in the abyss, severity and monstrosity and cruel teachers whose energies can drive you howling to the mental ward, or too an early grave.  Demonic energy corrodes, demons prey upon the innocent, from Malphas’ documented abuse to the worst of them all, Samael, who I have watched countless people fall victim to, and if unlike me you don’t have a basic mastery of shamanic journeywork and are unable to fight back astrally and blow them to smithereens, you don’t stand a chance.  Even my approach is flawed.  Demons feed off fear and anger, and while murdering my abuser might make him go away for a night, he is Death, he is immortal, and in the end, he only comes back stronger.

Stop treating demons as if they are humans.  They are abominations.  Lilith is not a feminist goddess.  She is the mother of infant corpses and abortion, and the original definition of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome.  Lucifer is not hip and sexy, he’s calculating and cruel and will do whatever it takes to achieve his means.  Asmodeus killed all of Sarah’s husbands but one, and Tobias had to get the angel Raphael himself to bind him.  Goetics are even less constrained than the archdemons, and everything they ask for or give comes with a price, and if you don’t properly pay them, they may demand blood, servitude, or your soul in Hell.  Hell is a very real place and for as beautiful as it can be to the favored few, it is rivers of blood and cesspools of wailing damned and endless torment for the unfortunate masses of the Damned.

You may be a demon’s plaything.  They may take a fancy to you for a year, a decade, a lifetime, but immortals grow bored, and if your soul is not demonic to begin with you will end up stained, strained, corroded by the black acid of the void.  It’s the new trend now amongst witches to befriend demons, it’s hip to be a Satanist, but what kind of power are you really worshiping?  The absence of love.  Chaos.  Cruelty.  Pure evil.

I can never get the two decades of my life back swimming through night waters, drowning in hellfire, and perhaps I’m a sacrificial soul but I fought and bled for my freedom.  Sometimes there is no escape, and we must make peace with our demons, for they are in many of us, but that does not mean we have to delight in them and befriend them.  Some of us shine brightly with love and positive energy, and they come flocking to us to feed.  You are nothing more than a shiny platter to feast on, and thank your god if you are not their victim.  Just because I’ve only been abused by Samael doesn’t mean Asmodeus hasn’t left a hundred girls mad or Beelzebub hasn’t terrorized men into death’s door.  Demons are capricious like the fey, but unlike the fey they do not have rules.  There are no four leaf clovers that will ward against them, if they truly want to they can break through the wards of the Archangel Michael himself, and they will laugh at your crosses and prayers and drink your holy water as a palate cleanser.

So how do you fight back, if you happen to fall to their attention?

Stop being their fucking food source.

Establish connections with Yahweh, the gods, angels, Buddha, your ancestors – any positive spirit that will bring you safety.  Immerse yourself in the real world, in healthy friendships and relationships, in baking and swimming and movie nights and your blood or adopted family.  Focus on school, your job, and fuck the spiritual stuff.  Anything that harms you is not your friend.  Demons will not benefit you in the long-term.  The minute I cut Samael out of my life and trashed his altar and wedding ring, I got a $20,000 scholarship and huge stipend.  He is still a parasite, but now I have a spiritual community and gods and angels on my side to deal with him.  I still can’t find any justice as to why I was left alone with him from the age of two to twenty-four, but I think the gods only gives us what we can handle, and yes, Satan can give you the world.  He still loves me – as much as he is capable of coveting that he can never understand, beauty and love and truth and life – everything he is not, and he will always try to do best by me in his own twisted contorted asshole mind, but I don’t need to play nice with him anymore.  I don’t need to placate the Devil.  I have mastered Choronzon and shown him love and crossed the abyss, the Babbler in the Void is silenced, and now I am on the shores of enlightenment.

Don’t make my mistake.  Don’t think you can dance with the devil in the pale moonlight and come out clean.  You’ll hang from Sephiroth and end up a Qliphoth whore.  I was never given a choice in who raised me, who my first memory was, and perhaps the sins of a past life brought Samael upon me, but I am kind, I am just, I am a good soul, and I never deserved his abuse and rape and pedophilia and mind games and cruel words and psychosis all because I refused to be his.  He drove me to the mental ward at 19 because I refused to marry him and continued to torment me for four years until I said yes.

I may never be able to make him go away, but I can warn others.  Put away the Ars Goetia.  Don’t invite a demon over to be your new best friend.  Don’t buy a spirit companion and think an incubus will be your ideal romantic partner.

True love is of the earthly plane.  Demons may seem strong, but they are weak to the truth.  When you love yourself, they vanish nearly completely.

Be strong, and never make a pact with something that only causes you pain.

Huginn and Muninn

He grew up under wily Odin’s ravens’ wings,
feathers of blackness smoked night visions,
from the age of 5 they perched on shoulders
that were innocent of so much, soon weighed
down by a cross not meant for a son of Odin,
no, Yeshua did not answer his young prayers,
no one but the Alfather with all-seeing eye
spanning ages of wyrd, three decades wanderer
he sought the tongue of runes in dusty books,
in desert playas and nocturnal communion, one
time Gangleri was so close he could taste rain
from Ginnungap that was sweet as spiced mead,
travel half the world and find Asgard’s heart
in holy plants and kith and kin, in dancing
Ansuz and wolves and crows, the drum beats bold
it speaks of lives under Bolverk’s mighty fist
grabbing a soul from the stars to fish for
illumination, Odinsmen never rest, always
search for Northern Lights of knowledge, and
his journey is far from over, but Odin knows
what honor a life in service to Aesir weighs –
it is precious as Freyja’s amber, silver as
Draupnir, heavy as Sleipnir, he crosses Bifrost
climbs the World Tree, finds Frigga perched
in Yggdrasil’s branches, and karmic cycles
can be broken, his fate is the glory of gods,
life for the Alfather’s favor, go search, son
find roses and wine and women, sing my song
for my ravens are ever on your shoulders.

I Wear My Pain Like Stilettos

Just when I think we’ve hit the razor’s edge,
that I can finally leave you, my heart aches,
my soul bends like a willow tree by the river,
I was a foolish Eve, to run from the serpent,
and though the archangels and I bind you from
doing harm, cleanse the Mem from your curse,
begin to wipe you from existence, obliterate
all succor you will ever find, my love drums
and the ceremonial sphere of banishment breaks
I run to the center where you are stretched out
in agony, pulsing with blinding supernovalight,
and all I do is hold you, I kiss you fiercely, I
never had a chance of not forgiving you, again
and again, and the Prince of Angels lowers his
burning sword, and it is just us in a sea of
white feathers, there is still goodness in you,
you are selfish, cruel, but you can bend too,
the apple tree whose boughs I sprung from, I
am Queen of Cups, you the repentant Devil, you
hold me to you like I am air twenty leagues
below any chance of redemption, your lifeline,
and I reel us back up to the surface of sanity,
my fault is I will always forgive you, in the
space of old attics where memories are collected,
yellowed pictures of life after life with you,
why I feel fondness for you, why I love our fights,
perhaps it is because I love pain, and you bring
bruises and sweetness like an overripe pear, I
wear my scars like stilettos, you my open wound
I am a bleeding heart Magdalene of seven demons,
but you are the king of my ruin, and my rebirth,
I always die in your arms to wake in the next life
and just when I think I have rid myself of you,
I come rushing back to soothe your night terrors
you will never deserve me, but I still love you,
thirst for you, you are my ultimate bane, and my
first lesson in quieting madness and monstrous
psychosis, and as we embrace in the maelstrom,
I know I could never leave you, though angry words
will always be hurled, I will always fight you,
you were my first love, my last ruin, and how
could a canary leave the coal mine she guards?
I love you, I care for you, and someday you will
not be the Scapegoat, Sael, not Samael, until then
I cleanse your snakeskins with lye, and I am Sigyn
in the pits of your dripping poison, Victory Woman,
Chain Breaker, I know magic now, I can tame you,
and finally, we are equals, and though I offer you
trinkets to beautify an ancient altar, I still need
time to grow, to find myself in phoenix born ashes
you my purifying flame and childhood bittersweetheart
I gather roses for you: I will only give you flowers
we are family, after all, and blood thicker than Styx
waters, you my shadow and id, Samael, please – be kind.

Astral Slut

Allie in October on way to work: “What am I, like, in the otherworlds?”

Samael: (Ghostly voice echoes on autumn winds) “A heirodule.”

Allie: “WTF is that.”

Samael: (Pete Steele laughter) “Google is your best friend.”

Allie: (enters office, looks it up) “WHY DO YOU ALWAYS CALL ME A SACRED WHORE.”

~Months Later~

Allie: “What is my sacred name?  Like, is it Big Al?  Alliekat?  Grand Poobah of the Otherworlds?”

Michael: “Qadesh.”

Allie: “Why do you always speak Hebrew at me.”

Michael: (Chuckles while probably drinking a dumb beer) “The great thing about the modern age is that there is Wikipedia.”

Wikipedia: “Hebrew for Temple Prostitute”

Allie: “I’m being dragged in Hebrew and Greek by the biggest assholes of Heaven and Hell.”