I’m so thrilled to share with you an interview I did with the gem named Kate Richards. She’s an author and editor, and a beautiful soul you want to know. Today she’s sharing her story of becoming a solitary witch, and in the spirit of literary empowerment, she’s offering a $20 Amazon gift card to a random commenter! Comment with your name, email, and praise for this lovely woman by Sunday 8 June to be entered!

How would you describe your work/path/art to a beginner?

Author and Editor, Kate RichardsI use the term witch now, but while I do own wands and have an athame, etc., I believe intent is the most important tool in my bag.

How did this work call you? At what life stage?

I attended 12 years of parochial school…but at thirteen years old I suddenly woke up to the possibilities of so much more. I believed in reincarnation, although I didn’t even know it existed, in the oneness of all, even though I wouldn’t have been able to explain it then. After that while I did go to religion classes, church, whatever, it lost meaning for me. But it was okay because I was so curious about everyone else’s reality.

Describe your experience of spirituality as a teen/young adult. Discuss your blessings and challenges of that era.
I just went with what my heart told me was true, and read anything I could get my hands on. Because I was that age pre-Internet, research wasn’t as easy to do. The local library didn’t have a lot of “occult” literature. And I was part of a Catholic family that, while I don’t think were all that pious, did go to church every Sunday and were a little appalled by my interests.

I ended up joining a New Age group at twenty-one and while I emerged with some very good experiences, a lot of damage was done to people there by those who took advantage of the their open hearts and minds. I learned what strength a group of people united in mind together could hold, but also not to trust anyone who said they had answers for me.

I experimented then with a number of different relationships, although I wouldn’t have called it experimentation at the time. But I can see now how the different people in my life affected my path in good and maybe not so good ways. And how important each one was.

Then one day someone said I was Wiccan…and because I had apparently not learned that people don’t have the answers, I went with that. And it was good…in a way. In learning about what Wicca was, I found that I liked some elements of it and added it to everything else I’d been picking up along the way, left the parts I didn’t like…and moved on.

I have to find my own and the best way for me is to listen to others, but follow my heart. I resent the statement that we need a set of rules like the 10 Commandments to know that we shouldn’t lie, murder, steal, and covet our neighbor’s ox and ass (or iTouch). We know these things, we don’t need the carrot and stick of heaven and hell to get there! Your ox is safe around me. I’ll watch it while you go to the rest room if you like.

How does that experience speak through your work, today?
I don’t know if I have anything I’d really call my work. I try to be a good person, open to everything the universe has to show me. I am a solitary practitioner/witch, believer in oneness…I don’t know. I try to offer support to others who are also searching and find the common thread that we all share, the light in each of us. I believe that we have specific lessons to learn in each life and in each moment and try to pick up on them before they have to actually slam me in the face (because that can hurt).

Kate Richards is the pen name of a solitary witch living in Southern California, with her husband and way too many rescued pets. She is a published author and editor and rejoices in the ups and downs of life that allowed her to land where she is at this time.

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Teen Spirit Guide to Modern Shamanism by S. Kelley HarrellDon’t forget to comment to be entered for a chance to win Kate’s gift of a $20 Amazon gift card!

Available worldwide, Teen Spirit Guide to Modern Shamanism.