The Shieldmaiden Blog

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Ireland Pilgrimage, part 2: Hell or Connacht

Of the places I visited during my sojourn in Ireland, many affected me deeply, but Connacht felt like home. In Connacht, I spent time in Roscommon, Sligo, and Leitrim counties. Here, the hills and mountains were more rugged, the landscape a touch wilder, than the midlands I had traveled through. Connacht feels like untamed country. It […]

Photo by Joe Perri

Ireland Pilgrimage, part 1: the Living Land

I have just returned from a three-week pilgrimage in Ireland and Britain. Since landing at SFO on Monday and making my way home, I’ve spent a lot of time sitting in contemplation before being able to write about my experience. It is hard to know where to begin. The two weeks in Ireland was initiatory. […]


Trans women and sovereignty: I stand with you

Today’s post is a brief, but passionate one. I have some other topics that I’ve felt compelled to write on for this blog, but with ritual and logistical preparation for the Coru Priesthood pilgrimage to Ireland in full sway, I’ve had little time for writing. A few days ago I came across this essay, shared […]


For the long night approaches

I’ve been thinking about death. A couple of weeks ago, a beloved relative of mine found his death. And you know, I’m sad and I’ve had tears. But also, there is something of the beautiful death about his story and I want to talk about that. Rhett Ashley was my uncle on my mother’s side, […]

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BOOK OF THE GREAT QUEEN: Final countdown to publication

A couple of quick updates about the book! I’ve been intensively pushing through the final work on the book – editing, reviewing artwork, cover design, proofing, indexing, and all of that fun stuff. This week, we received the first proof copies of the book – for the first time, I held the book in my […]


Adventures to come: PantheaCon and beyond

This blog has been quiet as I focused on completing the manuscript for the Book of the Great Queen. I hope to be back to regular blog writing soon as work on the book winds down. For now, I’m just sharing some updates about what’s coming up next for me. Book Publication I completed the […]


The Violence from Below

Last night, I left work and headed home on the train just as the Ferguson Grand Jury announcement was wrapping up. My loved ones were already in downtown Oakland joining the mass protests. I sat on the train staring at the live reports and feeds, full of horror, fury, shame, and sickness at the predictable […]


Theurgic binding: or, “S#!t just got real”

EDITED TO ADD: The post below has generated quite a bit of discussion and several responses on other blogs: John Beckett, Dver, Rhyd Wildermuth, Ember, and Asa West. In response to the latter post, I just wanted to add a couple thoughts. Dear readers, I do not think you are easily frightened children, nor is […]

It’s a damn fine time…

Today I’m emerging briefly from book cave to spread the word about the shiny new site! is the brainchild of my dear friend and co-conspirator Theanos Thrax, known to many in our communities as the Anomalous Thracian. He’s bringing together a gorgeously diverse array of writers (with more to come) representing a range […]


I see it crimson, I see it red

The black birds thunder overhead. Below, the combatants gather. They are marked by red. They speak the names of the dead. It is afternoon and I am sitting quietly in the warm sun. I have taken the afternoon off from working on the book to join a peaceful demonstration against police violence and racism. Around […]

Book tour!

Just a quick note from me here in book project world. Over at the Book of the Great Queen campaign on IndieGoGo, after we met our first two stretch goals, I asked people for suggestions on further project goals. Many people wrote to me suggesting a book tour after publication. So I’ve set book tour […]