1. Your new book is titled, The Witch's Broom; it explores the creation of both general and specialty brooms, and also includes tidbits of broom lore and personal stories from Witches in the community. Why are brooms important to spellcraft and ritual?
Brooms have been associated with witches for centuries, and they are a common, inexpensive, and easily accessible tool—and yet many witches don't use them for magical work on a regular basis. This may be because there just isn't a lot of information out there on how to make them work for you, no matter what kind of practice you have. Hopefully, The Witch's Broom will remedy that!
2. You are a prolific writer, and many of your books (such as Everyday Witch A to Z and Witchcraft on a Shoestring) focus on being a Witch in a mundane, everyday world. From where do you draw your ideas?
As you might guess from my titles, I get most of my ideas from my own everyday life. More specifically, from the issues I, or the women in my coven, run into as we try to live our best possible lives as witches and human beings. Sometimes I get my ideas from questions or requests for help from my readers, too. But much of the core of my books—rituals, craft ideas, recipes and such—come from my practice with my group, Blue Moon Circle, or my own personal practice.
3. The Witch's Broom features illustrations by Mickie Mueller and anecdotes from community voices like Tess Whitehurst, Melanie Marquis, Michelle Skye, and Linda Raedisch. How did these pieces of the book come together?
As far as Mickie Mueller goes, I think she was suggested as a possibility to me and I responded with an enthusiastic "YES PLEASE," because I love her work. In fact, we are currently working on a Top Secret project together, spawned in part by how excited I was to have her be a part of The Witch's Broom. As to the other authors who contributed, I was working on the book and it suddenly hit me that I knew all these amazing authors who had varying experiences and points of view, and how cool it would be if my readers could get a taste of how other witches and Pagans (besides me) used broomstick magic. So I reached out to folks like Linda, Tess, Melanie, and more, and thankfully, they loved the idea as much as I did. In fact, I SO loved the way it all came together, I'm doing the same thing in the book I'm working on now, Everyday Witchcraft (a follow-up to my most popular book, The Goddess Is In the Details.)
4. You include many crafts in the book, such as creating brooms for special occasions or ritual use. Do we need to create a new broom for these occasions?
It really depends. In a perfect world, yes, it would be nice to have a different broom for each special occasion and one for rituals. In reality, not everyone is going to want to invest it half a dozen or a dozen different brooms, so if you need to, you can probably reuse one or two brooms for special occasions, and maybe even use one of them for your regular ritual broom as well. I always tell people to do what works for them, and what feels right to their hearts.
5. The Witch's Broom also includes a vast number of broom spells and rituals, from a spring-cleaning ritual to a spell to summon rain. Are these spells and rituals you use on a regular basis?
A few are. I do try to do some kind of spring (and fall) cleaning, and we sometimes use a broom for regular ritual tasks like cleansing the ritual space or sweeping away old energy. Others are spells and rituals I came up with specifically for the book—but now that I have them, I will definitely be using them!
6. What do you hope your readers will take away from The Witch's Broom?
First of all, I hope they discover, as I did when I started researching the book, what a fascinating history and lore there is associated with the simple broom. I also hope they see that there are more ways to integrate a broom into a magical practice than they ever thought possible, and just maybe, that they will be inspired to try a few for themselves.