CRAIG CONLEY (Prof. Oddfellow) is recognized by Encarta as “America’s most creative and diligent scholar of letters, words and punctuation.” He has been called a “language fanatic” by Page Six gossip columnist Cindy Adams, a “cult hero” by Publisher’s Weekly, a “monk for the modern age” by George Parker, and “a true Renaissance man of the modern era, diving headfirst into comprehensive, open-minded study of realms obscured or merely obscure” by Clint Marsh. An eccentric scholar, Conley’s ideas are often decades ahead of their time. He invented the concept of the “virtual pet” in 1980, fifteen years before the debut of the popular “Tamagotchi” in Japan. His virtual pet, actually a rare flower, still thrives and has reached an incomprehensible size. Conley’s website is OneLetterWords.com.
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A Turkish Delight of musings on languages, deflations of metaphysics, vauntings of arcana, and great visual humor.
Go Out in a Blaze of Glory

August 4, 2020 (permalink)

Two odd minutes that almost got us killed: the neighbor came at us with a baseball bat as we filmed at 4 a.m. during tropical storm Isaias.
#fire #playing with matches #matches #video
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July 31, 2020 (permalink)

We're delighted that our mystical spell for a wishing well (which debuted in Fiddler's Green magazine, no.4) inspired a magical presentation by renowned mentalist Mark Edward for his book of mysterious séance magic, Total Darkness.
#magic
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July 15, 2020 (permalink)

We're thrilled by this amazing reaction to our video about how to get published big time, without connections:
"You sir have awoken something in me that has been collecting dust for quite some time now. In a sense, an encounter with bad luck had me concluding that life was too busy for art. Thank you for shining a light far enough for me to find a source of my own. I shall repay the favor and pass it on with each chance that presents itself." --Joshua Batie
#creativity #writing #success #publishing
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June 17, 2020 (permalink)

Today is the anniversary of our journey through a shattered hall of mirrors, which we recorded on video.  
#mirror #prof. oddfellow #broken mirror #hall of mirrors
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June 14, 2020 (permalink)

We're delighted by this 5-star review of Seance Parlor Feng Shui:
***** Another masterpiece from the inimitable Professor Oddfellow!
This book is such a gem, every occult temple, Theosophical Parlour, ritual chamber, and seance room is incomplete without it! The detail and historical tidbittery in this is unparalleled by the most thorough of scholars, the Professor stands alone in his weird, unique field.  Buy this book! The spirits will thank you! —Holy Mountaineer
#occult #feng shui #seance
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May 20, 2020 (permalink)

We're honored by this review of Nostradamus Predicted Your Next Diet:
5 STARS.  If there's anything more wearying than listening to people prattle on about their diets it's listening to them do so while in the thrall of whoever the most famous nutritional guru of the moment happens to be. Such individuals (and there are legions of them) tend to rhapsodize endlessly about the salubrious effects of his or her prescribed culinary regimen as though every last detail were sacred prophesy guaranteed to insure a state of physiological utopia to all unswerving adherents. Or maybe that's just me being a crank. I'm worn out by trying to evaluate 'expert' advice on every area of life and struggling to ascertain how many, *if any*, of the often conflicting recommendations I should follow.  One might as well consult Nostradamus as to immerse oneself in the current iteration of The Received Wisdom  vis-à-vis proper nutrition ... which is precisely what Craig Conley has done.
Although Nostradamus was a trained and licensed physician, I don't believe this book is intended to promote dietary advice from the 1500s. Instead, what it suggests to me is that universally applicable menu plans are more fanciful than factual because they tend to break down in practice. Thinking adults are better off combining their own common sense with some general research and then adding a secret ingredient: whimsy. Dining should be pleasurable. Even when health and weight concerns are a priority, meals need to provide more than calibrated sustenance.  Planning and preparing them can actually be fun if we decide to take a Michel de Nostradamus/Craig Conley approach. 'Think outside the kitchen' and allow your inner chef to be inspired by history or mythology or perhaps a work of art.
A final comment regarding the illustration of Nostradamus Predicted Your Next Diet. Once again, Mr. Conley has outdone himself in providing a plethora of remarkable images to amplify and support his text. They alone are worth the price of the book, in my opinion. My favorite of them appears on the final page and it depicts a Charles Dana Gibson style lady, seemingly thrown into a swoon by the conundrum of how best to prepare her next meal. I can relate; can't we all? —Natasha K.
#prophecy #nutrition #dieting #nostradamus
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May 16, 2020 (permalink)

We're delighted by this review of our book on Feeding & Caring For Sheet Ghosts:
"This is a very good handbook for the care of sheet ghosts. About a 94% accuracy, with the mistakes being trivial at best. 9/10 would recommend." —Clinical-Manners
#sheet ghost
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May 4, 2020 (permalink)

Thanks to Tigre Gordito for tweeting: "Professor Oddfellow's work of cataloging mysterious things drawn and written in the past moves me so much.  oneletterwords.com/weblog/"
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We're honored by this review of our Secrets of Chicken Whispering over at Amazon:
5 STARS ARE NOT ENOUGH.  I cherish this book.  It's wonderful -- quite literally, 'full of wonders'.  Although it purports to reveal the secrets of 'chicken whispering' and does, it goes a great deal further than that.  Those fortunate enough to have gallinaceous companions will gain much from a thoughtful reading.  So will anyone else who seeks to enhance their kinship with other living creatures, humans included. The deepest and most precious secret to achieving that end is the development of an empathic connection, a process which Mr. Conley details in a manner both concise and poetic. I wish I could give him at least ten stars in return for the joy his work has given me.  Like all great authors, he is a heart whisperer. —Natasha K.
#chicken
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April 7, 2020 (permalink)

It had been three years since we last donned our Third Eye sunglasses during a full moon to scout for fireballs in the night sky.  In the first photo, the strange triangle of blue lights is the moon reflecting on the sunglasses lenses.  The second photo is from 2017.
#prof. oddfellow #night photography #fireball
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"[At the] centre of the dark vault of heaven this glittered," from It Is Never Too Late to Mend by Charles Reade, 1856.
#vintage illustration #constellation #night sky #stars #starry night
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April 4, 2020 (permalink)

We're honored by this 5-star review of The Egyptian Secrets in Your Name:
Egyptian ideograms, our Latin alphabet, and essential secrets of the self
While reading The Egyptian Secrets In Your Name, I began to realize that the secrets in letters of my name, as in every other symbol set I encounter, are to be found within me. They remain occult only to the extent that they're unexplored and the best way to reveal the personal meaning communicated by any symbol is to make a conscious decision to allow the unconscious to operate freely. Even the most 'common' name becomes unique when you view the letters as images, allowing your own intuition to connect with their latent significance.

Our intuition speaks to us through a kind of psychic poetry. Each individual is an author in this regard.  As Craig Conely demonstrates using the method he's devised, an ancient symbology can be as relevant to us today as it was to to those for whom it was designed. A person's name is a private stanza of truth about the essential self.  This book helped me to see mine, showing me how to look for Egyptian ideograms evoked by our Latin alphabet and engage with their energy. —Natasha at Amazon
The quest to decode the individual letters in a name goes way, way back.  Our research triggered a realization that every name encodes an ancient Egypitan poem.  As the original publication of our findings is freshly out of print, and as it was originally intended exclusively for professional magicians and mentalists, we were inspired to offer a revised and expanded edition containing twice the number of example readings, so that anyone can perform the technique for friends.  No memory or guesswork is required.  You’ll understand the hidden Egyptian meaning of your name instantly, and you’ll be able to dramatically interpret friends’ names.  You don’t have to be a poet or expert on symbolism to shine with our technique.  You’ll simply say aloud what you secretly know the letters to mean.  Here are the details.

#egyptian #occult #name reading
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April 3, 2020 (permalink)

Quimby’s Bookstore in New York had to close as a “non-essential” business during the virus scare (wait—since when is literature non-essential?), but the owner managed to set up a pop-up shop at the Crest Hardware and Urban Garden Center.  We spotted A Field Guide to Identifying Unicorns by SoundHow to Believe in Your Elf, and How to Be Your Own Cat, all next to Anne Rice’s The Witching Hour on the top left shelf.  Books are essential hardware and gardening tools!
#quimby's #bookstore
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March 26, 2020 (permalink)

We're honored that Rolf Maurer called our Dictionary of One-Letter Words "magisterial."  In celebration, we made this illustration of a crown opening like a seed, its uppermost gem growing like a branch.  There are implanted shoots, like an ornate N and V, which might grow together to form an M.  Is the M for "magisterial"?  It's not for us to analyze our own work.
#crown #one-letter words
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March 24, 2020 (permalink)

We're delighted by this review of our How to Be Your Own Cat:
"Superb! I have been initiated into the feline mysteries. I hear my name called and let it wash over me, pause, and recede like waves crashing against the cliffs.  Unmovable.  10/10 would buy again." —Will at Amazon
Whoever you are, Will, and whatever name you don't answer to, enjoy your nine lives!
[Image from Old Peter's Russian Tales by Arthur Ransome, 1916.)
#vintage illustration #cat
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March 23, 2020 (permalink)

We're honored that Vegas magician Creed talked up our Field Guide to Identifying Unicorns by Sound and our Magic Words: A Dictionary.  We actually once attended a secret fire ceremony deep in the Nevada desert with Creed and, no kidding, we witnessed him reach out and seize one of the zillion stars in the Milky Way.  (You sure can see a stunning number of stars from way beyond the lights of Vegas.  Surely the Universe won't begrudge Creed's snatching one.  It was a moment we'll never forget.)
#magic #prof. oddfellow
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March 21, 2020 (permalink)

In the style of Yahoo!answers, "Does it mean anything if a guy remembers that you collaborated on a book?"  Yes—it means a lot!  We were delighted to receive a Jinx mascot pin in the mail, from a friend with whom we wrote a guide to the most remarkable magazine in stage magic's history: The JINX Companion.  Thanks for making our day, Gordon!
#cat
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March 18, 2020 (permalink)

We're honored by this 5-star review of our book entitled Astragalomancy: A Loaded Guide: Intriguing Readings of 21 Discrete Dice Throws:
"I enjoyed 'Astragalomancy' very much. To me, it's a classic template for approaching divination. Craig Conley chose a tool (a pair of dice) that's easy to obtain and use, and he devised an elegantly simple system for employing it to precipitate intuitive insights. This system is informed by Mr. Conley's vast historical and metaphysical knowledge base, his epistemological point of view, and his expectations for the process, but as with every occult methodology properly applied, it will change in the hands of each individual practitioner. Anyone should be able to use the tool and the system to access their own intuitive faculties -- provided they are willing to relax and trust those faculties. To 'divine successfully is to transcend conscious thought and arrive at a personally relevant interpretations. 'Astragalomancy' illustrates, both figuratively and literally, how that can be done." —Natasha
#divination #dice
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March 3, 2020 (permalink)

We're greatly honored to have inspired the Clan of Xymox music video "She" with our own video involving neon-lit face masks in an Urbex environment.  We've previously explored Clan of Xymox's astonishing lyrics here.  Don't miss the cute surprise ending to the "She" video.
#mask #music video #clan of xymox
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February 26, 2020 (permalink)

We're delighted by this 5-star review of pencil witch of The Pencil Witch:

"When the power of a focused, analytical mind combines with a resolute, independent spirit and a kind heart, the results are virtually guaranteed to be magical. 'The Pencil Witch' is a case in point.  I started reading this literally and figuratively charming book with the understanding that it would be a simple grimoire of practical magic, which it is. From the very first pages it's also a lot more.  Professor Oddfellow took me on a metaphorical exploration of metaphysical principles, but with such whimsy that I was never consciously aware of being educated even as I was entertained.  The individual concepts covered are ingenious and fascinating in and of themselves, but what I loved most about the book was the way it's prompted me to revisit my understanding of the relationship between mind and matter. The Pencil Witch has given rise to a series of lively discussions about metaphysics inside my brainFive stars." —Natasha, on Amazon

#witchcraft #occult #grimoire
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