The Magical Writing Grimoire Book Review
Does it get more "book witch" than a grimoire focused on wordcraft? I think not.
This week's book review is The Magical Writing Grimoire by Lisa Marie Basile, in which she teaches readers the importance of ritual writing and how to infuse your work with as much magic as possible—trust me, whether you consider yourself a witch or not, this book is one you'll be interested in.
Genre: Creative Nonfiction; Self-Help; Witchcraft
Rating: 5/5 Stars
Pairing: Mint tea + Dark chocolate croissant
"Our words give us autonomy and direction. Our words are our wands. [...] In a sense, the page is your altar of self."
Okay, before we get into the content of this book, I have to fangirl over how beautiful and aesthetic The Magical Writing Grimoire is. Between the black and gold cover (one of my favorite combos), marbled end papers, illustrations by Ada Keesler, watercolor splashes, and quotes from historic writers, this book is a work of art!
The content is no different. This 2020 release is undoubtedly something we all needed during and post-pandemic (and probably even before then).
After a brief introduction, The Magical Writing Grimoire is divided into six lovely chapters:
Magical Writing: Basile talks about word witchery and how to use the book.
Conjuring Your Voice: This chapter discusses creating a sacred writing space, preparing yourself for ritual writing, and writing your own spells. Basile also talks about writing sigils, creating your own alphabet, and graphology, which I found to be very interesting and inspiring. I also liked the section Writing Down the Moon, in which she talks about writing based on the current moon phase.
Healing Magic: Here you'll find prompts and accessible rituals around shadow work, healing, and transformation. Ya know, the painful yet potent stuff. There are practices and rituals for saying goodbye to an aspect of your life, confronting limiting beliefs, naming your shadows, shadow work based on astrology, writing letters to your younger self and the dead, and more. This is probably my favorite chapter; it's certainly the one I've used the most.
Manifestation Magic: This chapter isn't all "good vibes only!" like we often see when the word "manifestation" is used. Basile emphasizes the importance of knowing what you can and cannot control, and the hard work that goes into manifesting the life you want. This chapter is great for learning to set intentions and act upon them to make things happen for yourself or your community.
Mindfulness Magic: Mindfulness is important in all areas of life, but especially magic. This chapter aims to help you develop a sense of presence, become more receptive, and strengthen your intuition.
Grimoire Poetica: Basile provides more writing practices and a bit on living as a Word Witch—writing horoscope poems, bibliomancy, poetry as spells, keeping dream journals and diaries, and using online platforms to advocate for yourself and others, etc.
There are also a ton of resources in the back, ranging from books and magazines to websites, apps, and tarot decks.
"Every word you speak or write has power."
As you might have guessed, The Magical Writing Grimoire is chock-full of journaling prompts and writing practices. But while this tome is called a grimoire and contains numerous rituals, it's useful for anyone who wants to use journaling and/or ritual writing for self-reflection and healing—no witchy background required.
I've done quite a few of the practices, and I can testify that the exercises in this book are cathartic and inspiring. I'll certainly be coming back to this book for prompts and rituals again and again.
But The Magical Writing Grimoire isn’t just about the act of writing; it talks about using colored ink and graphology to imbue your writing with intention, writing with the cosmos, creating your own alphabet and sacred spaces. It’s about listening to the outer and inner worlds. It’s about reclaiming your voice or discovering it.
While this book is primarily about using the power of your words and voice to create a better life for yourself, Basile wraps up by expressing the importance of using word craft for others, as witches have historically fought and worked to help the oppressed and under-privileged.
Which leads me to my last point: accessibility. Like with her other books, The Magical Writing Grimoire is highly accessible. Rituals require very little aside from your preferred writing method (including typing and recording) and a few candles. Basile lists substitute items and actions for those who may need them, and encourages readers to alter rituals wherever they desire or need in order to make it more accessible and resonant for themselves.
"Language is magic. What we speak becomes, poems are spells, and you are a word witch."
The Magical Writing Grimoire is a gorgeous and magical book on so many levels. It's aesthetically pleasing, inspirational, inclusive, accessible, trauma-informed, and full of practices and prompts to help readers heal and transform their lives. All in a loving yet no-bullshit tone—I mean, she is a Scorpio after all!
Basile encourages readers to have compassion and patience with themselves as they work through the book, as it can be hard to face shadows or use your voice. But the reward is well worth it.
I would recommend this book to anyone looking to add a magical or ritual element to their writing/journaling, commit more fully to writing and/or journaling, work on self-healing, discover or reclaim their voice, rewrite their narrative, or otherwise use writing to transform their lives.
If The Magical Writing Grimoire sounds like a book you want on your shelf (and you totally should), grab a copy here or find it at your local retailer. If you've read and worked with this book before, let us know what you thought in the comments below, or on bookstagram or Twitter!