These are exciting times, magically and I have a wealth of ideas for new writing and new magical activities. Some of these are solo projects, others are things which I will work on in collaboration with magical colleagues.
The Mermaid Project
One important piece of work is a quest to find the Merfolk of East Anglia. Various authors have claimed that there are no Mermaids of importance in this area, preferring to concentrate on those in the South West, in particular the fabulous Mermaid of Zennor. Yet, in Norfolk we have the beautiful and powerful Mermaid of Upper Sheringham, whose story of persistence and determination is well known locally, and the friendly Mermaid of Grimston, whose cheerful presence is cheering to all who meet her. So, with my husband, Chris Wood, and the delightful and talented Alice Kerridge-Crick, I set out on a sunny Monday in late February 2019 (the first of many Mermaid Mondays) to find as many as possible of the Mermaids, not just of Norfolk, but of the rest of East Anglia as well. Despite many outings, we were not able to visit all of them before the Autumn crept up on us, which is testimony to just how many of them there are to be found. It was all so exciting that we decided we would prepare our work for publication in due course in a book containing text by me, photos by Chris and drawings by Alice. The plan had been to spend this Summer visiting those we had not yet been able to see and then finish writing up our findings this Autumn. However, as has been the case with so many people’s plans, all this has had to be put on hold due to the Covid-19 pandemic. All the churches, where many of the Mermaids live, have been locked up since March, and even with the lifting of restrictions, many have not reopened fully to the public yet, and it has not been possible for Chris or myself to meet with Alice other than online. We could have written about the Merpeople from what few pictures and other bits of online material are available but that is not the way we work at all. It is important that we really go to the place and experience the presence of each Merperson for ourselves, look at them carefully and listen for any messages they may have. So, reluctantly, we have decided that we will have to let the project take whatever time it needs, and accept that the time is not yet right for its completion. We hope to begin again in the Spring of 2021 and have the book ready by Yule.
Grimston Mermaid Burwell Mermaid Dennington Mermaid Upper Sheringham Mermaid
A Magical Diary of the 2020 Lockdown
Throughout the lockdown period this year, from 13th March to 13th July, I kept a diary of magical and mundane events. Initially, I had intended it just for myself and possibly for those I work in close association with, but as it progressed, I began to wonder whether it would not actually be publishable in book form. We were, for the most part, confined to our homes, but the magical mind can travel where it will, and I found myself reflecting on stories and incidents from my own past, on the magical uses of some of the plants in the garden which I had never before thought of using, on new recipes, new spells and new ideas to try out, and the feeling that in the future things could be very different. I also put into use items which I had kept but not used, “met” people on social media to an extent that I had never before experienced, received gifts from kind people from near and far, and sent items to people all over the world too. I was also involved in many rituals to help protect our community and to keep the magic flowing. So, although our physical world became very restricted, there was at the same time, an amazing feeling of expansiveness and potential. The diary, which does have a title, which for now will remain secret, charts my journey on this adventure which was so strange and so different for all of us. I am currently polishing and completing this work and hopefully it will be accepted for publication before too long.