AUTHOR NOTE: In this article, I discuss Wiccan witches, but I acknowledge that not all witches are Wiccans, and not all Wiccans are witches.
I love witches in literature and real life, and I love creating witch characters.The witches I’ve known are the kindest, brightest people. The witches I’ve written about run the gambit of my imagination from the fanciful witches you’ll find in books/movies (including dark witches) to modern-day witches who worship nature, beauty, and life.
If you want to write a book about a witch character, you can use these tips:
Witches are not evil people who worship the devil and are part of a cult. They are kind-spirited people who believe in a creed (known as the Wiccan Rede) that says, “An' ye harm none, do what ye will.” Witchcraft centers around expanding one's knowledge and understanding of nature (trees, animals, lunar phases, seasons, etc.). It never involves harmful spells or potions. The spells witches may cast are for healing, love, wisdom, and creativity, and the “potions” they brew are tonics and other healing remedies. Witches believe in the Law of Three that states whatever you send out returns to you threefold, so they only do good things with their craft.
Witches don’t have a distinct look. You could pass a witch or two in the grocery store. But if you want to give your female character a look that could be for a witch, she can dress in long, flowing skirts and cotton sundresses, lace, and crocheted wraps.
Did you know? The Defense Department recognizes Wicca as an official religion and allows Wiccan soldiers to state their belief on their dog tags. As of 2006, an estimated 1,800 Wiccans served in the United States military.
|Image from Pixabay|
3. Know the 8 Sabbats
If you’re going to follow a witch character for any given period of time in your story, you should know what the eight Sabbats are because they are all significant, especially for magic.
· Yule, Winter Solstice- marks the longest night of the year and the start of the sun’s return.
· Imbolc, Feast of the Candles- celebrates the beginning of spring and the sprouting of seeds.
· Spring Equinox- when earth awakens. Wiccans color eggs and plant seeds.
· Beltane, May Day (May1st)- a celebration of the fertility of spring.
· Midsummer- the longest day of the year.
· Lugnasadh (August 1st)- the first harvest.
· Autumn Equinox- earth prepares to die and Wiccans give thanks for the harvest they have received.
· Samhain, October 31st- the Wiccan New Year that honors rebirth.
Ceremonies are very important to witches. Each one is done for a specific reason. I’ll highlight two that have the most meaning to Wiccans and can be great additions to any story:
· Initiation: When a witch is welcomed into a coven or, more to the point, becomes a witch for the first time in their life.
Read this article for more information on initiations into covens.
Read this article for information on a solitary witches self dedication ritual.
· Handfasting- This is a Wiccan marriage where the couple’s joined hands are bound with a rope they created from three strands that represent the bride, groom, and their relationship. As they braid these strands, they discuss their lives and futures together.
Modern day witches cast spells with the energy of natural things and their deities. They use candles, oils, incense, and herbs as well as these tools:
· Athame (double-edged knife)- directs power and energy out of the witches body and into the world.
· Chalice (cup)- holds water or wine for ritual use.
· Broom- used to cleanse the ritual space before and after magickal work.
· Cauldron (pot)- can be filled with water, fire, flowers or other items at a ceremony.
Witches don’t wield power with their hands. They don’t vanquish demons like on Charmed (my all-time favorite show) with potions. But they do have a...
· Book of Shadows- a witch’s personal journal where they document spells, rituals, and magickal lore.
· Altar- a space (table or shelf) where spell and ritual tools can be kept.
· Pentagram/Pentacle- an encircled five-pointed star used as a symbol of the Wicca faith. Having your witch wear jewelry with a pentagram on it would be a nice touch.
|Image from Pixabay|
Again, do your research. I recommend reading “The Everything Wicca and Witchcraft Book” by Skye Alexander.
If you want to create a supernatural witch, you have the freedom to get creative with his/her appearance. In my short story, Witch of Death, my heroine, Liberty Sawyer, looks like your classic evil witch with jet-black hair, ice-blue eyes, and moon-white skin.
A supernatural witch can have any power you can imagine. Piper on Charmed could blow things up with her hands. Your witch could also harness power in his/her hands.
Here is a list of Supernatural Powers and Abilities.
A witch in a fantasy or paranormal story can have any name from Sabrina (Sabrina the Teenage Witch) to Bellatrix (Harry Potter). Whatever name speaks to you for your witch character should be the one you choose.
Check out this list of female Pagan names.
When a supernatural witch does magick, anything can happen. Lightning can strike around him/her, the four elements (water, fire, earth, and wind) can flow like streams
and spin around your witch, and flames can burst from the ground like geysers. In Witch of Death, my witches can form burning orbs of energy with their hands that they used as weapons against each other.
5. Blend fantasy with real life.
You can have supernatural witches in your story, even evil witches who dabble in black magic and still include some of the things I mentioned in the modern-day witch category.
QUESTIONS: Do you like reading books with witches as the main characters? If so, do you have a favorite book?
AUTHOR NOTE: This is not a post for people to leave hateful comments about witches/Wicca. If you do, it will be deleted immediately and not responded to. Thanks!