Interview with a Druid – Nimue Brown
In today’s Interview with a Druid I’m talking to Nimue Brown, author, druid, and quiet activist, about doing the Pagan Business thing for the right reasons. This is one of my favourites Interview with a Druid (or Witch, etc) that I’ve ever done.
Buy it here: Druidry and Meditation
On Knowing What to Write About
It depends on what I’m aiming to write – if it’s a blog post, it’s a case of what have I learned recently, or what’s annoying me! Some things come as a response to what’s needed – so I’m looking for radical ideas for my quiet revolution column at Pagan Dawn in an ongoing way, I’m thinking about alternative responses to the seasons for Sage Woman blogs, radical poetry might go to Gods and Radicals, miserable poetry goes to a local event.
When it comes to books its a slower and less coherent process. I tend to have some long term interest in something before I get to the point of wanting to write a book about it. Usually there will be a combination of reading other people’s ideas on a subject, exploring a practice or an idea for myself, and it flows from there. At any given time I’m reading and exploring in a number of areas, some of which go into books, some don’t, and its not usually obvious when I start whether I’ll take it to fiction or non-fiction.
I think the first thing to say is that being a writer does not pay my bills and probably never will – this is true of a good 95% of authors. Most of us have second jobs. Some of us manage to align those second jobs with the writing work, but that’s not always the case.
It’s certainly true that being an author in this day and age tends to mean spending more time tying to draw attention to your work than you spend creating the work. I give talks, now and then, I take books to events (easier for people who have cars, I suspect), interviews (!) I write articles and columns and blog posts and lurk around on social media trying to find ways to say ‘you could buy my book’ without boring people to death. I’m not a great self publicist, I’m much happier when I’m talking about other people’s books. I find it easier to be excited about other people’s work.
Buy it here: Pagan Dreaming: The magic of altered consciousness
On a Writing Career in the Pagan Field
My first advice would be to drop the ‘career’ notion. I could probably count on the fingers of one hand the Pagans who earn enough as professional Pagans with writing as part of the mix, to be wholly self supporting. Even best selling Pagan authors tend to have a second job – it’s realistic to think you could be working part time and being professionally Pagan part time. So, don’t do it for the fame and riches! Do it because there is something you feel called to share, because you’re inspired, driven, passionate about something.
Then at least there’s the job satisfaction, even if you aren’t getting any money out of it. Most Pagan events can’t afford to pay most speakers more than their travel costs. I know there’s a widely held belief that authors all rake it in JK Rowling style, that people charging for teaching are exploiting the community and all that. The truth is that many of the Pagans you’ve heard of are either paupers, or have a day job. I won’t name drop, but as an author, reviewer and member of various things, I’ve talked to a lot of famous Pagans along the way and I know something of what it costs them to do the work. If you’re looking for a career, this isn’t going to provide.
Stay tuned for more Interview with a Druid!
Interview With a Witch: Demoiselle Étrange
In this week’s Interview with a Witch I’m talking to Valerie from Demoiselle Étrange, about the different streams of income you can use to build your business.
“I wanted to share my vision of magic; in a simple and modern way.
I like logic in spirituality and believe it is possible to be connected to nature in your everyday life.
My personal blog became an online store and slowly turned into a full time project, with classes and services.
Our classes are offered on downloadable PDF files, since most of our clients are from Europe.
It is more convenient that way!
These classes are the results of our research and studies on various theme of the craft.
We love to gather information and simplify, so it is easier to understand the theory. We also prepare exercises so our students can put their knowledge into practice.
Our mission is to turn magic into something logical and accessible. Our goal is to help people develop their inner power and connect with nature!”
As well as their website Demoiselle Étrange also has an Etsy shop.
“I love making amulets, gris-gris and talismans!
Each of them are inspired by other cultures and traditions, each of them has a story of its own!
The best part of my job is to keep on learning, while sharing and bringing some magic in someone’s life!
It is not for everyone! Even today, people have misconceptions and judgements about the practice.
I think it’s important to have a down-to-earth approach toward people who don’t know much about it, so they can understand better.”
Don’t think of your business simply in terms of what you have to sell, whether that’s a book, a candle, or a piece of jewelry. Consider other revenue streams, some of which you build onto what you already have with not much trouble.
Not all of them will work for you, but one or two may slot easily in to what you already do: sell courses, have third party adverts on your website, affiliate marketing or sponsored posts, e-books, Patreon, teaching or speaking. The list is endless.
And advertising needn’t be a dirty word – there are models where you can choose who advertises on your site and how, so you can choose business who you are happy to support and build that advert in a way that suits you and your followers. The best thing to keep in mind when you consider adverts and affiliate marketing, is only to promote the things that you would recommend to other people if you weren’t being paid to do it.
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