I’ve been going through a minor crisis. I’m always happiest when life is a whirlwind, but it hasn’t been lately. There’s been a lot of stillness — something I never sit with comfortably. Perhaps it’s the breath before the storm. There’s been so much change and heartache this year. So many people are scared. So many people are hurting and with this vast underbelly of misogyny and racism that has reared its ugly head in this country it’s hard not to despair — but despair we must not. This isn’t my favorite time of year, either. Winter is not so harsh in LA, but Christmas leaves me cold none-the-less. I don’t think I ever liked Christmas. I remember my neighbors rapturously telling me about the angels flying around their tree when I was a child. I peered endlessly at our tree for a couple of years before I realized said neighbors were religious fanatics and technically insane. I think my favorite Christmas was in fourth or fifth grade when my mother bought me cassettes of Ozzy Osbourne’s Diary of a Madman and Devo’s Freedom of Choice — which, in retrospect, explains a lot about my life.

Things I’ve been doing in the interim…
Writing on the new book. After a cracking first few chapters it’s been slow going. Mainly that’s because I keep getting lost in the research and am making new connections all the time so the outline keeps changing. I have promised myself this time I will use an outline and stick to it — it’ll never happen.

Lilith by Leigh McCloskey

An old friend of mine from the Languedoc, Anaiya Sophia was in Malibu so I went to visit her at Leigh McCloskey’s house, Olandar. Leigh was in two of my favorite movies, Inferno, and The Bermuda Depths. Wandering through his painted 3-D environment, Hieroglyph of the Human Soul, it was all I could do not to ask him about working with Dario (not the right crowd). Was a thoroughly enjoyable evening (Anaiya talked about the dark side of the feminine which reminded me of many conversations we had sitting in the sunshine in the garden of Yobaba Lounge in Chalabre, France — making me miss my home something fierce) and Leigh’a paintings, especially the one of Lilith, intrigued me to no end. I was also in serious awe of his library and could have spent days there perusing through the titles. You can learn more about Hieroglyph of the Human Soul here.

Speaking of which, I’ve also been doing a lot of reading. My favorites so far: The Initiatory Path in Fairy Tales: the Alchemical Secrets of Mother Goose. Obviously, I was not the only one haunted by the line in Fulcanelli’s Dwellings of the Philosophers, “The Tales of Mother Goose (mother law, primary law) are hermetical narratives where esoteric truths mingle with the marvelous and legendary setting of the Saturnalia, of Paradise, and of the Golden Age.” Evidently, Bernard Roger, the author was as well. He was also one of the last disciples of Fulcanelli’s adept, Eugene Canseliet which makes me beyond curious to his research. I just finished Normal by Warren Ellis, and had the pleasure of hearing him read from it the other night. It’s a far cry from the folklore and history I’m normally steeped in, but I’m terrified by the notion the science of machines may be an unhealthy magic in the exploitation of nature — namely electronic genius loci. I won’t say more because you should read it yourself, although I was musing with a friend the other night that part of my current state of mind may spring from occulted abyss gaze. I’ve been pulling on the threads of the past, and slogging through dense treatises for so long that I’m only barely in the present, only now do I own a cell phone and know how to download an app. Perhaps I’ll be sent to Abnormal. Perhaps I already have and that’s what LA really is. What else? I thoroughly enjoyed Strange Revelations: Magic, Poison and Sacrilege in Louis IVX’s France by Lynn Wood Mollenauer. I have to say some of the chapters were beyond horrific. As the mother of the Mother of Toads who killed everyone in the film (yes, technically Clark Ashton Smith is her creator, but I gave her some modern day nefarious nuance) there were a couple of times I actually set this book down. Still, if you have the stomach for it, it’s a fascinating read.

I also have another article in the latest issue of The Heretic Magazine. On the Trail of the Tetramorph – “In an attempt to bring order and meaning into the structure of their daily existence, the first wise Persian astrologers appointed four royal stars in the sky, otherwise known as the watchers, who stood over the universality of divine dominion.” The Heretic Magazine contains a choice selection of feature articles written by cross-disciplinary experts in the fields of Alternative History, Lost Civilizations and Technologies, Mysteries and Conundrums, Religion, the Occult, Politics, Science and more. If you’re at all curious — follow the link — The Heretic Magazine Issue 11. Much thanks to Editor, Andrew Gough, and to Mark Foster, Creative Director, for having me onboard.

There are two projects in the works that I am beyond excited about but cannot say anything about them right now. I shouldn’t even say that, but I can’t help myself. As for Desired Pyrotechnics… it’s taking longer than expected. Fingers crossed it will be out by the beginning of the year. I do not doubt knowing the way my life goes that everything will come crashing in at once and I’ll be throwing my hands in the air screaming, “What the fuck!”
I sure hope so…

Until then I’ll be holed up at Lux in Tenebris HQ, grumbling about the holidays, and spiking the eggnog.

Much love from where the worlds touch,
S- xx

ps – I cut my hair. It was beyond time for a change and secret agent suits my mood.


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