Alex does … rom-com?

OK I was just trying to explain to someone on Twitter today why my recent work, A Fairy Story By Any Other Name, is in fact light and fluffy enough to appeal to a Rom Com reader.

This got me thinking, what if I, Alex Sumner, actually tried to write Rom Com for real?

I have been giving this some thought, and already I’ve come up with some putative titles:

  • When Harry Exorcised Sally;
  • Pretty Witch;
  • My Best Friend’s Initiation;
  • Bridget Jones’ Book of Shadows;
  • How To Lose All The Members of your Order in Ten Days;
  • Romancing The Philosophers’ Stone;
  • What Wizards Want;
  • The Sabbat Crashers;
  • The Eternal Sunshine of the Nirvikalpa Samadhi Mind; and my most hopeful idea,
  • Three Weddings, Two Demonic Evocations, One Banishing and A Funeral.

:)

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“A Fairy Story By Any Other Name” free on Amazon

Just a reminder that my book A Fairy Story By Any Other Name is free to download today – Wednesday 9th April 2014.

Follow the links below to get to the appropriate download site, and when you do:

  • Please tweet / share that you’ve downloaded it; and when you’ve finished reading it
  • Leave a nice review on Amazon. :)

Thanks!


USA: http://www.amazon.com/Fairy-Story-Other-Detective-stories-ebook/dp/B00JG5SV4C/
UK: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Fairy-Story-Other-Detective-stories-ebook/dp/B00JG5SV4C/
Germany: http://www.amazon.de/Fairy-Story-Other-Detective-stories-ebook/dp/B00JG5SV4C/
Canada: http://www.amazon.ca/Fairy-Story-Other-Detective-stories-ebook/dp/B00JG5SV4C/
Australia: http://www.amazon.com.au/Fairy-Story-Other-Detective-stories-ebook/dp/B00JG5SV4C/
France: http://www.amazon.fr/Fairy-Story-Other-Detective-stories-ebook/dp/B00JG5SV4C/
Spain: http://www.amazon.es/Fairy-Story-Other-Detective-stories-ebook/dp/B00JG5SV4C/
Italy: http://www.amazon.it/Fairy-Story-Other-Detective-stories-ebook/dp/B00JG5SV4C/
Japan: http://www.amazon.co.jp/Fairy-Story-Other-Detective-stories-ebook/dp/B00JG5SV4C/
Mexico: http://www.amazon.com.mx/Fairy-Story-Other-Detective-stories-ebook/dp/B00JG5SV4C/
Brazil: http://www.amazon.com.br/Fairy-Story-Other-Detective-stories-ebook/dp/B00JG5SV4C/
India: http://www.amazon.in/Fairy-Story-Other-Detective-stories-ebook/dp/B00JG5SV4C/

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Real fairies? Decide for yourself, says lecturer – Telegraph

My attention was caught today by this in the otherwise reliable Daily Telegraph:

A university lecturer claims to have photographed fairies in the Rossendale Valley in Lancashire

via Real fairies? Decide for yourself, says lecturer – Telegraph.

Yeah, I know it looks like a load of insects, but that’s what the man says!

Anyway, my novel, “A Fairy Story By Any Other Name,” is now available from Amazon, and is the story of a magician undertaking a perilous astral journey to save a girl whom he believes to Otherkin Fae. As such, as a work of fiction it is therefore more realistic than this so-called Fairy Story from Lancashire! Click here for more details of how to get a free copy.

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A Fairy Story By Any Other Name: Kindle Giveaway


Free ebook from Alex Sumner! For full details, read on:

A FAIRY STORY BY ANY OTHER NAME is a fantasy novel by Alex Sumner, author of “The Magus” and “Taromancer,” and features Guy Shepardson, the eponymous lead-character from Alex’ series “The Demon Detective, and other stories.”

Modern day Sorcerer (and rakish man about Town) Guy Shepardson finds himself out of his depth – and out of this world – when he uses his powers to save a desperately ill girl. Instead he finds himself wandering through magical realms populated by monsters, dragons, cannibals, a seriously bemused Voodoo Loa – and a feisty Fae Warrior, who definitely does NOT want to be Guy’s Damsel In Distress!

But as Guy comes closer to his goal, he realises that the cost could be far greater than he ever imagined…

This is now available to buy in both print and ebook form from Amazon, however:

ON WEDNESDAY 9TH APRIL 2014, IT WILL BE FREE TO DOWNLOAD!!!

To take advantage of this offer, simply add yourself to the event on Facebook or subscribe to this website if you have not already done so and – this coming Wednesday – follow the links to Amazon to get a free copy.

And please share this post with everyone you know! :)


Where to download it (on Wednesday 9th April):

USA:

UK:

Germany:

Canada:

Australia:

http://www.amazon.com.au/Fairy-Story-Other-Detective-stories-ebook/dp/B00JG5SV4C/

France:

http://www.amazon.fr/Fairy-Story-Other-Detective-stories-ebook/dp/B00JG5SV4C/

Spain:

http://www.amazon.es/Fairy-Story-Other-Detective-stories-ebook/dp/B00JG5SV4C/

Italy:

Japan:

Mexico:

http://www.amazon.com.mx/Fairy-Story-Other-Detective-stories-ebook/dp/B00JG5SV4C/

Brazil:

http://www.amazon.com.br/Fairy-Story-Other-Detective-stories-ebook/dp/B00JG5SV4C/

India:

http://www.amazon.in/Fairy-Story-Other-Detective-stories-ebook/dp/B00JG5SV4C/

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Alex explains… Black Magick

OK, so there has been a lot of controversy on the interwebby-type thing about so-called Black Magick, and racism, and what-not, so I thought that I, Alex Sumner, novelist and world’s greatest expert on the occult, ought to shove in my £0.02 and clear all this confusion up.

“Black Magick” is a perjorative term for any magick which is just as vile as your own – except that you happen not to like the person doing it.

Seriously! Throughout the history of the occult, the common-ploy of every charlatan and rogue is to accuse the rival sorcerer down the road as a practitioner of Black Magick, whilst oneself is of course a White Magician. It’s a marketing ploy – pure and simple.

Moreover, as far as your typical fundamentalist Christian preacher is concerned, all magick is indiscriminately Black, because it all comes from the Devil. Even the stuff which does not look as if it does, does: because Old Nick is just fooling the gullible.

To my mind, therefore, “Black Magick” has become a thoroughly discredited term as to be effectively meaningless. Now, however, consider the following situations:

You conjure up a Demon, and you say to it:

  1. “Hey, Demon! Stop being evil, and work only for good instead!”
  2. “Hey, Demon! Stop being evil, and satisfy my selfish ambitions.”
  3. “Hey, Demon! Stop being evil, and open up a hell-mouth in the Nevada desert for no other reason than shits and giggles, and blatant self-aggrandisement.”
  4. “Hey, Demon! I deliberately want you to harm one, some or all of the other members of the human race.”

Question: which of a, b, c, or d above counts as “Black magick” ?

Answer: depending on your point of view, potentially all of them. By the same token however, these can be argued to be completely different.

Situation a is in fact the rationale behind a lot of the ceremonial magick of bona fide magical orders such as the Golden Dawn, the Elus Cohens, etc, as well as magical systems such as Abramelin – because confronting the dark aspects of ones personality is something that every serious spiritual aspirant has to deal with sooner or later. Indeed, I myself have blogged about this topic before, in the context of using NLP in conjunction with Goetic magick.

Situations b is a Grey area. Depending on how the conjuration is performed it could so easily lurch from being a fairly innocent extension of the kind of thing envisaged in (a) above, through to a reasonable request to provide for the basic needs of oneself and ones family, through to something like selling ones soul to be a successful businessman / pop-star /  head of a Masonic order / etc.

Situation c sounds at first to be fairly sinister, but consider this: is it really evil, if you haven’t really harmed anyone, and all you’ve done is make yourself look like a complete cock? Actually: anyone who would seriously consider attempting such a thing in the first place is probably already beyond those kinds of scruples.

Situation d looks the most “evil” of all. However, when one considers that the Governments of the world authorise the taking of human-life on a day to day basis and call it “warfare” even this could – as far as a magician who is willing to prostitute his services to the cause of the said Governments is concerned – be argued to be justifiable. The legendary New Forest working, which is alleged to have taken place in England during World War Two, is just such an example: it wasn’t just something to defend the country, it was an aggressive act aimed at at least one member of the enemy directly and his countrymen generally. But who cares, after all they were only Germans?

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SpirituAll 2014

The Tattershall Castle

The Tattershall Castle, the venue for SpirtuAll 2014

No matter what tradition you practice, you will not want to miss the 2014 SpirituAll Spring gathering of traditions – the world’s first day long gathering of potential customers *Ahem* “practitioners” from the length and breadth of the British Isles.

In about the year 1990, novelist and world’s greatest expert on the occult ALEX SUMNER began going out to the pub … legally. In 2014 he has decided to invite fellow occultists to come out drinking with him on Saturday 5th April, at the Tattershall Castle, on the banks of the River Thames, from 12pm onwards (nearest tube: Embankment). Spiritual seekers come from all across the world, although realistically they will only do so if they happen to be in London, England that weekend.

YOU too are invited – no matter what sort of Spirituality you practice. Hey, if you’re willing to buy one of Alex’ books, he’s not proud!!!

Adjacent to the Tattershall Castle are London’s West End and all of the capital’s famous landmarks, so theoretically you don’t have to stay all day drinking at the venue, but could make a day out of it.

The venue is a fully fledged pub and restaurant. Instead of a sky-clad hot-tub, it’s right on the River Thames itself! You can go skinny-dipping if you want, I’m sure the river police will only be too happy to turn a blind-eye.

Here is the present gathering schedule:

  • Alex gets a round in – just before people actually start arriving for the event!
  • Lunch
  • Alex tries to sell people his books.
  • Depending on how much money he has got from the previous item, Alex might get a round in properly this time.
  • Gossiping about everything that is wrong with the current occult scene, freemasonry, fluffy-bunny neo-pagans, Nick Farrell, etc.
  • Alex does Tarot readings.
  • Depending on how much money he makes from the Tarot readings, Alex may get another round in.
  • Alex will demonstrate a fearsome Enochian ritual for opening a Hell-mouth in the middle of the bar.
  • Alex will be escorted from the venue by the security staff and handed over to the Police.
  • Alex will cunningly slip the Police the old funny hand-shake.
  • Alex will be escorted back into the venue by the rozzers, just in time to get yet another round in.
  • etc etc etc

See you there!!! :)

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Spiritual Healing For the Terminally Ill in the Western Mystery Tradition

Remember now thy Creator in the days of thy youth, while the evil days come not, nor the years draw nigh, when thou shalt say, I have no pleasure in them;

While the sun, or the light, or the moon, or the stars, be not darkened, nor the clouds return after the rain:

In the day when the keepers of the house shall tremble, and the strong men shall bow themselves, and the grinders cease because they are few, and those that look out of the windows be darkened,

And the doors shall be shut in the streets, when the sound of the grinding is low, and he shall rise up at the voice of the bird, and all the daughters of musick shall be brought low;

Also when they shall be afraid of that which is high, and fears shall be in the way, and the almond tree shall flourish, and the grasshopper shall be a burden, and desire shall fail: because man goeth to his long home, and the mourners go about the streets:

Or ever the silver cord be loosed, or the golden bowl be broken, or the pitcher be broken at the fountain, or the wheel broken at the cistern.

Then shall the dust return to the earth as it was: and the spirit shall return unto God who gave it.

Ecclesiastes 12: 1 – 7

A spiritually mature appreciation of the importance of Death and Dying is a vital part of our training, and many initiatory movements within the Western Mystery Tradition make a specific point of directing the candidate for advancement’s attention to this very point. The most immediate example which springs to mind is Freemasonry, which continually emphasises the fact one should prefer death over dishonour; and in the ultimate case one should actively contemplate ones own mortality, and attempt to meet it with bravery, a knowledge of having led a good life and stayed true to ones principles, and as much dignity as circumstances will allow. The point being that contemplation of death is said to lead to that most serious of subjects – contemplation of oneself.

This concept is not exclusive to the Western Mystery Tradition: certain Buddhist teachings advise meditating on death as the key to attaining enlightenment.

Moreover, it seems quite clear that the funerary traditions of the various cultures – from the burial rites of the Christian Church to the Tibetan Book of the Dead – are as much to comfort the living as they are to assist the deceased themselves. These rites aspire to teach the mourners the true nature of the immortal spiritual principle residing in each of us, and what we ourselves expect at the closing hour of our existence. Indeed, the priests and ministers of those traditions – who are the equivalent of the Adepts to the exoteric world – are specifically trained to minister to the dead and dying. E.g. just as Christian priests administer the Sacrament of the Last Rites, so in Tibet there are initiates whose specific dharma is to go visit the dying to read them the Great Liberation by Hearing.

Now, the question arises: what can any one realistically do for someone who is terminally ill, for whom there is no hope of a cure?

Anyone whose compassion has ever been remotely stirred by a dying relative – or indeed, anyone who works in the medical profession – will immediately say: “If you cannot give them Hospital care, you can still give them Hospice care.” I.e. if their condition cannot be Healed, it can still be Palliated. And this is a perfectly worthy and responsible use of medical resources. It is the medical counterpart to the religious rites mentioned above, which serve to palliate the individual’s spiritual suffering.

The idea of begrudging a man dying of cancer even palliative care could only occur to someone not grounded in such a spiritual tradition, or to one entirely lacking in ordinary compassion. I presume these would be the same sort of people who, if they were living in a country without socialised healthcare, would begrudge any type of free medical treatment to anybody.

The problem arises when someone who does not have a grounding in such a spiritual tradition tries to get a handle on this whole Death and Dying thing. The danger is that because they are in denial about the nature of death, they end up doing themselves and the dying person a disservice. I remember once seeing a particularly stupid remark by a neo-pagan of the egregiously fluffy variety who said she liked worshipping in the woods, as she didn’t like Christian churches with graveyards surrounding them, as they were places of Death. I had to point out that the reason old churches have graveyards attached is two-fold: (a) from the deceased’s point of view, it is a privilege to be buried in hallowed ground; and (b) to make sure that the Living pay their respects to their Ancestors at least once a week, when they go to Church.

Ancestor-reverence is of course a part of many cultures – including traditional pagan ones – however this fluffy-bunny had chosen a path which deliberately avoided this, just because she could not stand to see reminders of mortality – i.e. her mortality – instead keeping it hidden, out of the way. (Needless to say, my observations did not go down particularly well).

Then there are the practitioners of the Left Hand Path who obsess over immortality because they care not to admit that Death terrifies them, and bring Alchemy into disrepute by their neurotic ravings! Believe it or not, the so-called Solar Body is not a Hermetic teaching at all, but an exoteric Christian one – only it is called the “Resurrection Body.” The difference between the Christian and the Left-Hand practitioner is that the former simply relies on the Grace of God to attain the Resurrection Body, whilst the latter convinces himself that he must undergo all manner of unnatural practices.

Finally of course there are those who are well-intentioned, but end up doing something crass instead. Consider the following case which happened recently. The statement -

Let’s heal D_____ M______ K____ of his stage 4 cancer, because a world with him in it is better than one without

Is obviously born from the purest of intentions, but in every other respect is probably one of most badly worded spell intentions I have ever seen. One must assume that the author was in a rush and let his emotions rule his head on this point, which is no more than human. Nevertheless it is objectionable for three reasons:

  1. It ignores the fact that to deal magically with that particular condition would require defying every known law of Nature – it therefore sets the magician up for disappointment if the recipient does succumb to the disease;
  2. It assumes that “healing” is necessarily the best thing to do in this case, as opposed to any other form of spiritual assistance, e.g. palliation, making comfortable, facilitating the transition to the next stage of existence, etc; and
  3. It includes a “because” clause, which betrays the selfishness of the person framing the intent – i.e. it may be better for the world in general and us in particular, but did anyone stop to consider whether it was better for the said person – to condemn him to live with the shadow of a terrible illness hanging over him, and what is worse, to have to put up with us?

A far better-worded intention would have been:

Let’s send positive energy to D_____ M______ K____ with no obligation whatsoever, to enable him to do as he judges best.

Finally, let us remember that in the continuing battle between Death and Life, the latter has yet to win. Furthermore, if Death happens to both good and bad people, the idea of Death being some kind of punishment must surely be a fallacy. Therefore, the best way to bring spiritual healing to the terminally ill is to oneself come to a mature understanding of the end of days – and do it soon, because “the time shall come and the wisest of us knows not when.”

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Review: “The Hermetic Marriage,” Pentameters Theatre, 22nd March 2014

The Butterfly Wheel

The Butterfly Wheel

Hermeticism. Tarot. Kate Bush. Tarot. With these four words of power I was evoked to visible appearance in Hampstead, north London, to view a performance of “The Hermetic Marriage.” This was a music / dance piece created by The Butterfly Wheel, and staged at Pentameters Theatre. This, incidentally, is a tiny venue, with capacity for only sixty in the audience, mainly known for poetry and fringe theatre. The venue-owner told me afterwards that this was the first time she had taken a chance on a piece like this – but her gamble had obviously paid off, as the production had sold out every night of its three-week run.

This being more an immersive art experience rather than just a simple performance, I shall describe my experiences subjectively…

As I entered the auditorium, I heard the delightfully named Alice Ancient and Moon Child vamping ambient textures with synth and haunting vocals. These two ladies were positioned – with their band – stage right, dressed as high priestesses for the rite which was to follow.

Solomonic Seal

Solomonic Seal

The place was daubed with occultish symbols, whilst on the floor of the central performance area was the Seal of Mercury from the Key of Solomon. (Hmm! This is the second time an artist has used the Key of Solomon to conjure me to appearance!) I took my place in the audience at the back on one of the wooden chairs used instead of conventional theatrical seats.

A young man came up to me with a tray of lucky charms and asked me to pick one. I did so at random: he told me I had picked the Hand of Fatima, which wards off all evil spirits. “Oh, cheers!” I said. I tried licking it but it had no discernible effect.

As Jim Morrison was wont to say, “Is everybody in? Let the ceremony begin!” First came an invocation of Sophia – the four dancers, two male and two female, portraying Her plight as she is forced to surrender her baby to the corruption of the material universe. Meanwhile, behind everyone a rapid succession of images projected onto the back wall: pre-filmed sequences alternating with a multiplicity of symbols – satanic – masonic – alchemical – rosicrucian and more.

Throughout the evening’s performance, the dancers played the parts of the Philosophical King and Queen; of Cernunnos; of angels and devils fighting for the souls of mortal lovers, and ultimately the Sun and Moon themselves. Meanwhile, six musicians in total – the Butterfly Wheel and their accompanists, and two others who appeared for a sequence set in Hell upon Earth – played compositions which bore the influence of the aforementioned Kate Bush crossed with Patti Smith, Jim Morrison during his more poetic meanderings, Irish folk, blues and country.

At its conclusion, I figured from audience remarks saying “Ooh! There were a load of ideas to consider,” that they were all clearly bamboozled. Clearly however, the whole thing was a sophisticated and highly unconventional magickal operation – the overall theme of which was to manifest the Hermetic Marriage in actuality, and raise the consciousness of the Earth thereby.

Unfortunately, the current run at the Pentameters Theatre has now ended: however the Butterfly Wheel will be taking their show to the Berlin Pychedelic Festival next month.

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How to upgrade your iPhone

"Yay! It's better already!"

“Yay! It’s better already!”

If you are the owner of an Apple iPhone, there are three ways you can improve your enjoyment of the device, to wit:

  1. Download the latest patch for iOS 7; or
  2. Wait a few months, and download the forthcoming iOS 8; or – best of all -
  3. Get Taromancer by Alex Sumner and read it on your Apple device.

Yes! Taromancer is now available via iTunes. Quite by coincidence (not a coincidence at all actually), it is also available for Nook, as well as for Kindle. It is, in addition, available in print (I even have a limited number of autographed editions available – get in touch via the Contact Alex link for more details.

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Far Away In Time, by Maria Savva

By way of a break from the usual occult related blog posts, I present this. Fellow indie author Maria Savva has come out with her new book, “Far Away In Time.”

Far Away In Time

Far Away In Time

Our lives are a series of stories, and we are the characters with the starring roles. The memories, regrets, secrets, and struggles that fill these pages are at once unique and relatable. These stories belong to us all.

Eight unforgettable tales reaching out to a place Far Away In Time…

Links

Available on Amazon Kindle:

Amazon US: http://www.amazon.com/Far-Away-Time-Maria-Savva-ebook/dp/B00J0G11S0/
Amazon UK: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Far-Away-Time-Maria-Savva-ebook/dp/B00J0G11S0/
Amazon FR: http://www.amazon.fr/Far-Away-Time-Maria-Savva-ebook/dp/B00J0G11S0/
Amazon DE: http://www.amazon.de/Far-Away-Time-Maria-Savva-ebook/dp/B00J0G11S0/
Amazon IN: http://www.amazon.in/Far-Away-Time-Maria-Savva-ebook/dp/B00J0G11S0/
Amazon AU: http://www.amazon.com.au/Far-Away-Time-Maria-Savva-ebook/dp/B00J0G11S0/
Amazon BR: http://www.amazon.com.br/Far-Away-Time-Maria-Savva-ebook/dp/B00J0G11S0/
Amazon IT: http://www.amazon.it/Far-Away-Time-Maria-Savva-ebook/dp/B00J0G11S0/
Amazon ES: http://www.amazon.es/Far-Away-Time-Maria-Savva-ebook/dp/B00J0G11S0
Amazon MX: http://www.amazon.com.mx/Far-Away-Time-Maria-Savva-ebook/dp/B00J0G11S0
Amazon JP: http://www.amazon.co.jp/Far-Away-Time-Maria-Savva-ebook/dp/B00J0G11S0/
Amazon CA: http://www.amazon.ca/Far-Away-Time-Maria-Savva-ebook/dp/B00J0G11S0/

Author Bio

Maria Savva

Maria Savva

Maria Savva lives and works in London. She studied Law at Middlesex University and The College of Law. She is a lawyer, although not currently practising law. She writes novels and short stories in different genres, including drama, psychological thriller, and family saga. Many of her books and stories are inspired by her years working as a lawyer, although she has not written a courtroom drama to date. She has published five novels, the most recent of which is Haunted, a crime fiction/psychological thriller. Far Away In Time is her sixth collection of short stories. You can find out more about her work at her official website: http://www.mariasavva.com

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