Thursday 4 August 2016

Blog Tour Guest Post - Along the Wheel of Time by Rev. Judith Laxer

Along the Wheel of Time
Sacred Stories for Nature Lovers
Author: Rev. Judith Laxer
Release Date: June 25, 2016
Keywords: nature, magic, pagan, paganism, ceremony, seasons, earth/air/water/spirit, spiritual, rituals, life cycle
Categories: Magical Realism/Paganism
Pages: 196
ISBN: 978-0692736340
Imprint: Gaia’s Essence

The various characters in this collection of magical short stories demonstrate how the changing seasons are a spiritual model for the soul.

Book Description:
A young woman follows her lover and finds her spiritual calling in the Autumn realm of the dead; a first-time mother gives birth on the Winter solstice; a daughter’s grief heals in a Spring garden; a joyous ceremony of mature sexuality celebrates the peak of Summer: these stories and more explore magickal realism in ordinary life. Following the Pagan Wheel of the Year through the experience of the characters, this collection of stories demonstrates how the changing of the seasons is a spiritual model for the soul.

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My Writing Process

It used to be that I’d wait until I was inspired before I put pen to page, or rather fingers to keyboard. And while the creations that emanated from those direct inspirations left me heady and satisfied, I came to know that this was an unreliable method. I needed to develop practices that would serve me as a writer despite the finicky moods of the Muse. If I waited around until She decided to visit, I’d find myself waiting around quite a bit and way too much.

The good news is that I know what inspires me: nature-first and foremost-but also beauty, certain types of music, demonstrations of kindness, humor, a clever turn of phrase, visionary thinkers, strong women working to defy patriarchal suppression. The bad news is that sometimes, often, I’d get lost in nature or listening to music, or just spend time reading articles and interviews of those whose words lifted my heart and soul.  One can love things fiercely but do so from afar. One can desire experiences but not make time for them. One can dream of living an artists’ life, but not take the necessary actions to manifest one. 

My former profession, before I became a Priestess and founded my ministry for the Divine Feminine, was in the performing arts. I started out as a dancer and singer in musicals. Dancing is a labor of love for sure, with the emphasis on labor. No one becomes an expert dancer without the discipline it takes to put hours of time into practice. Writing is no different. When I got serious about writing, I began to apply the discipline I once knew as a dancer to this endeavor. Every day, every day, even if just a little, get words on the page. Correspondence doesn’t count. Journaling, lists of ideas, even just a sentence, a part of a paragraph. Something. Anything. Daily.

I was also lucky enough to be invited by a friend to join a writing group she was starting. It met once a week. I found the structure immensely helpful, the accountability instrumental, the comradery and support invaluable. We wrote together, read and listened to one another’s work, provided feedback so we knew how our words were landing, what made sense and what didn’t, when we hit our marks and when we fell short.

But, as all things must in time, change brought the end of our meetings, and my writing production began to lag. I came to see that, although the writing life is often solitary, connecting with colleagues was crucial for me to continue to produce. So I started another writing group that didn’t really gel, and when it ended, I started another. I didn’t give up because I know how important it is to me to. I have learned so much from writing with other writers.

I also study the craft of writing. I continually strive to improve my skill set. I am lucky to live in Seattle where I can take advantage of the classes at Hugo House, the writers’ collective and school. But I have also studied on line, and have traveled a bit for writing intensives in other places.  For a while there, all the classes I took were on generating new material. In these classes, I also learned how to dive deeper into the subject matter, become more honest, less afraid. How to take one thought and develop it, one theme and expand on it, one idea and run with it.

For a while there, I felt a bit guilty that I was spending so much time on something from which there was no guarantee of income. But then I realized that the time I spend writing does not interfere with my paying work, and if I can choose to spend my free time writing, then why not? My life is actually richer because I do. 

Because being inspired is ideal, I make the effort to remain so, but I have something to fall back on to get me going when inspiration is elusive. I might not always write something worthy of printing, or even sharing with anyone at all, but words no longer fail me.

About the Author
Rev. Judith Laxer is a modern-day mystic who believes that humor, beauty and the wonders of nature make life worth living. The founding Priestess of Gaia’s Temple, an inclusive, earth-based ministry, Judith also enjoys a successful private practice as a psychic, spiritual counselor, hypnotherapist, shamanic practitioner and teacher of women’s mysteries. A keynote speaker and author of Along the Wheel of Time: Sacred Stories for Nature Lovers, Judith has presented classes and workshops on the re-emergence of the Divine Feminine since 1993 at conferences nationally. She dedicates her work to restoring the balance between feminine and masculine energy in our culture.

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