Lots of guides address common issues bloggers face, but very few specifically talk about the unique challenges faced by pagan, Wiccan or witch bloggers. Whether you’re considering starting a pagan blog or you’ve been at it for a while, the following tips were written with you in mind.
1. Don’t be afraid to be weird.
Face it, friend. Your religion/spiritual practice claims less than 1% of the population. You’re weird. Your people are weird, too. We all kind of like weird. So embrace it.
Does your coven go skinny dipping in the river every Beltane? Have you ever shaved your head for purification? Does your collection of herbs take up an entire room of your house? That’s quirky. Quirky is good. Quirky is interesting. Be your weird, quirky self.
2. And yet, be approachable.
Unless you just want to keep a blog for your friends and family, success equals building an audience that relates well to you.
Find a conversational tone and stick with it.
Avoid super esoteric references than only 100 or so people in the world understand and keep things digestible.
Remember, with a niche this small, you deal with a wide range of abilities. Some people come to your blog with no experience in your tradition, and some readers come to your blog with years of it. Speak to them both in a way that neither alienates nor condescends.
3. Never, never, never lie about a supernatural experience.
Occasionally, less scrupulous pagan bloggers and bloggers who write about occult topics in general quite clearly fabricate experiences to bolster their appeal. It’s usually very obvious what they’re doing and embarrassing to everyone.
People like this damage the credibility of the entire community.
Even if you experience something you feel legitimately originated from what you call a “supernatural source,” if you lack compelling evidence, you come off like a charlatan every time. So if you make the especially bold move of claiming to possess firsthand knowledge of this type of phenomenon, back it up. Photos, witnesses, EVPS—–and don’t try to fake it.
The average reader is a lot savvier than she was 10 or 15 years ago. If you post a fake, expect someone to call it out right away. You’ll deserve it. Playing with your readers deepest fears and most intense curiosities for a spike in your stats is not cool.
No matter what you have, people still question it, but if you obtain and present evidence honestly, at least they understand how you arrived at your conclusion, even if they interpret your evidence differently.
You only get one reputation. Guard it.
4. Use a detailed lunar calendar to plan posts.
I sent away specifically for a complimentary review copy this witch’s calendar this year (there’s a few perks to slaving away at a blog for years!).
I use it only for blog planning, and I keep my mundane activities on a separate calendar. It includes all the moon phases, holidays and little inspiring seasonal notes. I love it!
I curated this one in particular among several other options because it’s lightweight and portable, which really works for me.
This is the first year I started planning blog posts instead of winging it, and I am already much, much more productive. I get an idea, I schedule it, I run with it. No more sitting around wondering what to write about. I collect so many of my own ideas, I never run out of things to share.
5. Think seasonally.
Many blogs in many genres ride the seasons for SEO. Think about food and crafting blogs that post special recipes for Thanksgiving, Christmas or Easter.
Stats on these types of posts surge during their seasons because everyone is searching for articles like that at that time.
The same principle applies especially effectively in the pagan blogging genre. Depending on how you define “pagan,” most (if not all) pagan traditions grow roots somewhere in an earth-based philosophy. We do everything according to their place in the cycle of seasons, the moon, the tides, ect.
As a bonus, this puts you in tune with the seasons as well and encourages you to participate in more earth-based practices.
6. Make sure you’re okay with your family & friends finding reading your pagan blog. But don’t write with them in mind.
In beginning, a blog feels like a very private corner of the internet.
But as time goes on and you become more successful, your exposure increases exponentially.
Bear in mind that at any point, anything you write may go viral (in fact, most bloggers hope for that).
When you write, imagine everything you say printed on the front page of the New York Times.
Particularly because (sadly) paganism and witchcraft sometimes become an issue during child custody cases, where even judges often lack an education about minority religious issues and pagans in particular face astonishing prejudice.
It is disgraceful and frankly borderline unconstitutional that the family courts often see more mainstream religions as an asset to family life yet view minority religions with unwarranted suspicion. But that is the state of our justice system right now.
I’m not trying to scare you. I’m just asking you to look before you leap here, because there can be consequences to speaking publicly about your spiritual practices that simply don’t apply to your average cooking blog.
Someone you know will find your blog eventually. There is no such thing as true anonymity on the internet anymore.
Eventually, the word gets out. And you may not even know who knows and who doesn’t.
So if you find that you constantly censor yourself or struggle to speak freely because of what your non-pagan family, employers and friends think, pick another topic for your blog or find some other, more anonymous way to involve yourself in the community.
7. Specialize in a particular aspect of paganism without pigeonholing yourself or (worse) confirming a stereotype.
Because so many excellent bloggers pagan compete for the attention of pagan readers everywhere, finding a way to stand out often comes down to your very narrow niche.
Maybe you identify as a hedge witch, or you come from a long line of Stregas.
Perhaps you shine as a kitchen witch or you possess great talent for candle magick.
Whatever you claim to witchy fame, find an interesting angle to explore in your blog that piques the curiosity of your readers.
Focus on your particular experience. Try not to speak for an entire group of people.
Just be you.
8. Don’t write what you know, write what you want to know more about.
The old adage “write what you know” works well for long-form, but terminable writing (like novels or books).
Blogging is an indefinite writing proposition. And like everyone else, your knowledge is naturally finite.
Besides, it’s much more interesting to read about someone discovering things than it is to read an encyclopedia of their already acquired knowledge.
Use your curiosities and interests to your best advantage.
Have you always wanted to try to an ayahuasca ceremony in South America?
Milk a goat for Imbolc?
Live in an ashram for a month?
Did you find your grandmother’s handwritten book of herbal remedies in an attic somewhere?
Blog about that. Whatever you want to do, wherever you want to go, someone else out there wants to do it, too. People want to follow you on an adventure. They want to see parts of life and the world not accessible to them. Access it for them.
9. Find the magic in the mundane.
No need to sit around waiting for the Ouiji board to float off your coffee table.
Every day experiences bring with them the true magic in life, and plenty of opportunity to source inspiration.
Struggling with a midterm paper? Write a spell to help calm your nerves.
Love making cookies for Yule? Research the magical properties of their ingredients and post the recipe.
While you should go out of your way to make a big splash occasionally, you need not feel pressure to source spectacular subjects all the time.
Sometimes an understated subject works better than sensational. My most popular post of all time is 9 Ritual Items Commonly Found at the Dollar Store. Not exactly Exorcist material, but people love articles like that because the information applies to them in a way that’s useful.
10. Don’t forget to attend to your own spiritual needs—–privately.
This came as an unexpected problem for me, but after a while, I spent so much time designing spells, rituals and crafts for my readers, I forgot to do things just for me and my family.
You don’t owe everyone everything. It’s healthy to keep some things personal, and it’s okay. Remember to schedule rituals just for you. If you have a special insight or project you’d like to keep to yourself, then do that.
Because once it’s out there, it’s out there.