Oh My Stars

(This is part of the “Ask An Astrologer” series, where I occasionally try to demonstrate how getting a consultation can genuinely help and provide real guidance, using real-life examples. Want to find out for yourself? There’s a link to my e-mail at the bottom of this blog entry. Write me… and don’t be afraid to ask for my best rate, either).

BC writes:

“Can I please get a free sample reading? Thanks!”

First of all: thanks for writing! Looking at my Google Analytics each month shows people read my stuff… but actually being compelled to write me about it? that means something.

Have you ever gotten a free sample of something from the supermarket? You know: there’s someone there with a tray asking you if you’d like to try Sunny Leone’s new and improved pizza rolls (or whatever). Personally, I love that sort of thing. Go to the store on the right day and you can almost assemble a free meal out of that sort of thing. And of course Mama Leone wins too, because quite often you’ll end up buying a whole package of those pizza rolls. Frankly I’d love it if I could market my services that way. Unfortunately I can’t for a couple of very good reasons.

First of all: readings are not a uniform product cranked out by a factory. The reason the free samples at the supermarket work is because there’s a freezer full of  packages of Sunny Leone’s pizza rolls ready for people to buy and take home.

Just as no two people or to birth charts are exactly alike, neither are two readings. Doing a proper reading for someone is not simply a matter of grabbing the next package off the shelf. Doing a proper free reading sample for someone would be, if you’ll forgive the analogy, more like a surgeon who sits down and talks to you and does some tests and reads some X-rays and then wheels you into surgery with an anesthetist…  and then only takes out 10% of your tumor and asked if you’d like to pay to have the rest of it removed.

There are places and people on the internet that offer free readings. In my experience these invariably fall into one of two categories: a computer-generated report that has none of the skill and new ones that are proper reading from a proper astrologer would give you… or, frankly, a bunch of generic nonsense designed to either flatter or frighten you into sending money.

Here is an example of a free computer generated reading, based on my own birth chart:

Cancer Rising:
You appear gentle and soft, and you act rather reserved with others until you know them well and feel it is safe to be open with them. You have a strong need for emotional security and a sense of belonging, and are deeply attached to the past: your heritage, roots, family, cherished friends, familiar places, etc. Making radical changes or moves away from what is known and safe can be very painful and difficult for you. You tend to cling and hold on to people, memories, possessions of personal or sentimental significance. Having a home, a safe haven, is very important to you.

Sun in Sagittarius:
You are a gambler and an adventurer at heart, one who loves to take risks, to discover and explore new worlds, and to take the untried path rather than the safe, reliable one. You are an independent soul, freedom-loving, and often very restless. You need a lifestyle that provides opportunities for travel, movement, change, and meeting new people. A steady routine which offers much in the way of security but little in the way of space and freedom is odious to you.

Wow… both highly generic and completely contradictory! That’s some sort of an achievement, isn’t it? Certainly there are worse things though… like this sample of the other kind of free reading that I’ve just more or less made up based on the examples I’ve seen:

“I can see here that you have some questions about your life. The stars are saying you are in a conflicted time: some things are going well for you and some are a concern. BUT I MUST WARN YOU that you are about to be the victim of an affront or an outright attack from an unforeseen source. This will occur within the next month. Send me a payment now and we’ll look into that plus all the other UNFORESEEN PERILS that will face you very soon! Also: FREE WINNING LOTTERY NUMBERS with every reading!”

Well hello, Fraud.

So: as much as I’d like to provide you with a free sample reading, that just isn’t how it works. But if you’re interested in my services? Here are some testimonials. Get back to me if something like that works for you.

Questions about your birth chart, or astrology in general? Want to know more about my big discount on readings for new clients? Want a free month of my NEW Subscription Service? Write me for details!

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