Blog Post 174 – New World Witchery Cartulary No. 3

First of all, despite the fact that I have the little tag on the side of the blog that says “Blogging Without Obligation,” I would like to apologize for the incredibly slow past couple of weeks. I keep convincing myself that I have time hiding somewhere in my days and I just have to find it, but I’ve yet to find it and use it to keep posts up regularly. This month, it’s been particularly bad, and I know I haven’t been providing you with much content (other than our recent episode, which I hope was fun for everyone), so I apologize for that. I also haven’t gotten my blog up at Witches & Pagans yet for April, so if you follow me there, my apologies as well. Hopefully things will be returning to normal soon, but until they do, please know that when I do produce content at New World Witchery, I will try to make it the best it can be everytime.  Thank you all for being patient.

I think I should share a few items with you that may or may not be of interest to friends of NWW. You’ve probably noticed that the Compass & Key Etsy store has been down lately (and it appears that the Hex Folk Market has also shut down as well). I’ve been struggling a lot with whether to reopen the Etsy shop, because it provides a good way for people to support the show and site, but it is also a bit labor-intensive. While I was finishing my schoolwork, I had a good reason not to keep it open, but I recently made an order for someone who contacted me independently of the Etsy site and remembered how much I love doing that work. However, I’m also aware that there are a lot of sites out there offering similar goods, and too many cooks may be in the conjure kitchen at the moment. So I’m working on some new product ideas, things you probably won’t find everywhere. So basically, I’m saying keep your eyes open, and we will hopefully have *something* available there soon.

In the same vein, I’m also going to suggest you keep your eyes open when it comes to the Cartomancy Guide we posted a few years ago. I’m not saying something is definitely going to happen with that soon, but something is definitely going to happen with that soon.

Also, apologies that the Witches’ Calendar is not yet updated. I will hope to have something up soon, but I do apologize it’s not up to date yet.

Now that all the shamefaced apologetics and shameless self-promotion are out of the way, I thought I’d share a few things that have come across my sightlines lately. Most of these are interesting items I’ve read, and things I would love to hear from you about.

First of all, Fire Lyte recently wrote a post in response to listener Mimi’s question, “Has the era of Pagan Podcasting ended?” I’d be interested to know the thoughts of those out there who listen to podcasts and read blogs geared towards the magical community. My understanding is that there are certainly a number of folks who are trickling away from regular production (we’ve been posting less frequently here, obviously), but that there still exists both a demand and a supply of such shows. The Lucky Mojo Hour, Conjure Crossroads, Lamplighter Blues, and Old Style Conjure podcasts have all produced shows somewhat regularly over the past six months or so (although the only one on a highly regular schedule is the Lucky Mojo show). Likewise a number of more directly Pagan podcasts have been producing somewhat steadily: Lakefront Pagan Voice, Ariel’s Druidic Craft of the Wise, the charming iPod Witch, the venerable and popular Wigglian Way, & Modern Witch Online, for example. A few have never wavered, like DruidCast. And I see new shows starting to rise to the surface, like New York Pagan. Yes, there are definitely shows that are disappearing or fading away, and there will always be shows that explode with potential and then vanish without a trace. And I think Fire Lyte makes a great point about breathing room—it seems that a number of folks have needed it lately, so perhaps we’ll see some of the old hats diving in and doing new work soon. Oh, and in case you’re wondering, New World Witchery isn’t planning on going anywhere for a while. But what do you think? Has the era of podcasting come to a close? Should we all just close up shop and go home, or is there a better way for us to present our content?

My current bookshelf has had a nice little group of texts that might be of interest to our readers. I’m finishing up Vernacular Religion in Everyday Life, edited by Marion Bowman and Ulo Valk. It essentially addresses the concept of religious performance as it is done by people in their day-to-day lives. There are essays about how saint stories influence the behavior of a woman living on the Russian borderlands, a look at how the layout of a house can become a sun-clock tied to the performance of work in the home, and the importance of angels to the royal family of Norway. I’ve also been working through Alan Dundes’ excellent look at biblical folklore, Holy Writ as Oral Lit. If you’ve ever wanted to see how many different people killed Goliath (or his brother), this is a book to pick up. I’ve also got a book on my “in” pile called Witchcraft and Magic in the Nordic Middle Ages, by Stephen A. Mitchell, which looks quite promising.

With the lovley spring weather moving in (between the bouts of intense storms), it’s gardening time again. One of my favorite folklife blogs, The Blind Pig & The Acorn, has a couple of excellent posts  on some gardening practices which bridge distinctly Appalachian culture with a sensible, fun personal narrative. Her post “How Does My Garden Grow” and the post on “Patch Farming” are particularly nice. She also goes through each month of planting by the signs, usually posting around the first of the month. If you incorporate gardening into your magical or folk life, check out her blog.

For those who have been wondering, the Pagan Podkin Super Moot will be in New Orleans this year, and while I’m still working on dates and locations, it will likely be sometime in early October. I’ll be posting info at the main Pagan Podkin page, and here as well. I’m hoping to make things coincide with the New Orleans Folk Magic Festival in some way, too, but I can’t promise anything yet.

Finally, a happy birthday to Fire Lyte (a bit early, but better that than late, right?).

Thanks to everyone again for their patience, and for sticking with us!


5 thoughts on “Blog Post 174 – New World Witchery Cartulary No. 3”

  1. I’m a dedicated podcast listener, but I’ve never tried making one. Having said that, I think folks who put out podcasts weekly burn out much more quickly than those who do them monthly. And monthly has always made MUCH more sense to me for pagan podcasts, because unless you’re doing a lot of current event stuff, how much can you say week to week? How quickly will you hit the wall? I know there are a lot of listeners out there demanding constant content (probably because they’re addicted to the blather on Facebook), but me, I’d rather see more monthly stuff.

    And FWIW, DruidCast only pushes once a month. The Celtic Myth Podshow, which posts pretty regularly as long as Gary is healthy, comes out roughly once a month or a bit less. I have a hard time keeping up with a lot of weekly podcasts, and being a long-time Pagan, I’m looking for something that gives me more than the general 101 stuff. DruidCast has interviews with OBOD folks. CMP does the myths. You guys do hoodoo/folk magic. Fire Lyte does current events. I don’t necessarily need someone to do a podcast on what an athame is. I can get that in a book. I *want* interviews and book reviews and things that are more of an interaction with the community than a lecture.

  2. I have been listening to pagan podcasts for years and to be honest, I have only found a small number that I really want to support and stick with. The issue I typically have is that pagan podcasters sometimes turn this platform into a soapbox, preaching and hollering about political issues and complaining about new practitioners, and practitioners of differing systems. Some of the scorn I have heard directed at newbies is just shameful! Therefore, I find many of them to be cliqish and downright exclusionary. This is of course, completely within their rights, and they can do and say as they please, but I cannot support their rhetoric by being one of their listeners. So if they burn out and fade away, it doesn’t sadden or surprise me.
    What I look for is honest and useful information, from down to earth individuals. I like hands on practice, scholarship, history and folklore and recommendations on how I might expand in my craft. That being said, I am completely loyal to and happy with some of the podcasts that I have come across. New World Witchery is one of them, and I would be very unhappy if you stopped recording. Ya’ll are good people with great personalities and hopefully you and other good quality podcasters receive enough support from the pagan community to know that we really value what you do for us.
    Also, I’d just like to say that I wish you would reopen your etsy store. I would really like to try some of your oil blends.

  3. I have been listening to pagan podcasts for a few years. Most of the ones I really liked have gone off the air or gotten argumentative. I listen to podcasts a lot while gardening or working outside on the farm, it helps time go by quicker and I even learn something from them. By the way, this is the only currently operating podcast I listen to and it is wonderful.

  4. I need podcasts to survive.

    Okay, that might be a bit of an exaggeration, but I work in animation which means that you sit for eight hours at a desk and don’t talk to the people around you. (Nerds prefer to communicate via IM to the people right at their elbow.)

    There are two pagan-related podcasts I listen to religiously – yours, and Lucky Mojo’s. While I enjoy the fact I can get a new LM every week, I also understand how hard it is to record that often – my own podcast has been on hiatus for months. (Although I’m buying a new dang mic so that we can resume with better quality.) For most pagan related things I’m happy with once a month so long as the content is good. (Yours always is. I pimp you guys so much I feel I should have a huge hat and platforms…)

    We’d miss your dulcet tones if you stopped recording, is what I’m saying.

    As for Etsy… if it’s a pain in the ass, don’t do it. But I have to say I’d trust your products over a lot of other people’s.

    Also.. OMG New Orleans?! That’s where I was going to vacation this year ANYWAY! Hopefully my sibling and I can stalk, er, see all you awesome podkins.

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