Ask a Volva: Putting the K in Magick

You have probably seen books, videos, podcasts, and blogs with a very strange spelling for the word magic. One of the biggest and boldest examples is Joanna Devoe’s Kick Ass Witch slogan – Putting the K in Magick! Some of you are asking, What K? There is no K in magic? Can’t these people spell?!?

Reader Question: Why do you put a K in your spelling of Magick?

I’ve been asked this question quite a bit lately. One friend even thought I was simply making a spelling error or type-o and kindly tried to correct the issue. I appreciate the inquiries and efforts and I thought I would go ahead and explain myself. 

Magick began to be spelled with a K by those witches, Wiccans, pagans, etc who wanted to differentiate their spiritual work from the illusionary stage magic of David Copperfield, Chris Angel, etc. The spells, poppets, potions, and more created by modern witches are not meant to be created as an entertainment and nor are they simple parlor games. Most witches take their work very seriously as part of their religious practice and to suppose that their work was akin to sawing a girl in half for the applause of a crowd would be a very offensive mistake.

I will say that not every witch does this just as not every magickal practitioner calls themselves a witch. It all comes down to a matter of preference. Some say magic is spelled m-a-g-i-c and people should know better by context what sort of magic the speaker or writer is talking about – whether practical witchcraft magic or illusion or fictional. I respect that and agree, people SHOULD be able to tell by the context what sort of magic the writer is talking about but, sadly, assuming that people will know the difference usually, like the saying goes, makes an ass out of someone. I’ve learned this the hard way with a lot of terminology I use – and still have some people thinking that by saying I practice magick or calling myself a witch that really I’m just obsessed with Harry Potter or play games like Magic the Gathering or D&D (note- there is nothing wrong with any of these things…I really like Harry Potter). I’ve learned to be choosy with my words because of this.

I adopted this method of spelling magick when I began my professional career as a witch and tarot reader. As part of my profession, I read tarot at events and am usually not the only reader available. Sadly, there are times when another reader in attendance is there only as a form of amusement – they have no idea how to read the cards and don’t really claim to. Their fortunes are jokes the go along with giggles behind cheap gypsy costumes in exchange for token fees. It is part of my job to ensure that Seer & Sundry, as a brand, is not confused with the cheap, false entertainment. So, I made a conscious decision to do what I can to separate myself from the farce, and spelling magick the way that I do is part of that decision.

That being said, it is still very annoying that my writing platforms don’t acknowledge magick as a word properly spelled so I tend to spend most hours writing ignoring red squiggly lines as best I can.