Fiona Horne Book Extract: Why ‘50 Does Not Suck’ For Famous Witch

Aussie witch book extract

You may know her as the singer for 90’s Aussie electro-rock band Def FX who went on to author several best-selling books on modern witchcraft.

But that’s only a fraction of Fiona Horne’s many talents, as the High Priestess of reinvention reveals in her tell-all new memoir, The Naked Witch.

In the fascinating read, the former radio and TV personality talks about her friendships with Marilyn Manson, Gene Simmons and a torrid, but brief affair with Tom Jones, who inspired her to move to Los Angeles.

Fiona Horne new book about life

When Hollywood didn’t pan out, the now 51-year-old took another radical turn, moving to the Caribbean island of St Croix where now teaches yoga, fire-dances, and flies rescue dogs and medical supplies wherever needed.

“I don’t feel like I’m getting older, I’m just getting better at living,” Fiona said in a recent interview about swapping the broomstick for a cockpit.

To celebrate the release of her inspiring new autobiography, here is an exclusive edited extract from our favourite chapter, 50 Does Not Suck

‘Fifty really doesn’t suck. Well, it doesn’t have to – it depends how you live it. I am a sober, yoga-practising, mindful-thinking, useful contributor to the planet … Well, that’s what I aim to be, one day at a time.

This makes me happy. My body is healthy and is fun to inhabit. My mind is mostly peaceful. I know how to look ‘younger’: I smile – an instant, natural facelift.

In our society 50 once demarcated the time when a woman is no longer sexually desirable. Now we continue to live longer, as a species, and there are catchphrases like ‘50 is the new 30’ being flung about with relish.

Fiona the witch in concert
Fiona was a firm favourite with Aussie concert-goers in the 90’s. Pic credit: Tony Mott.

It all relates back to our desirability – our ‘mate worthiness’. I can go through spiralling descents into insecurity and emotional exhaustion over the five years since Jeff … if I allow myself to focus only on the fact that I have had no meaningful, lasting connection with a man – only brief, painful ones.

What is the starlight shining in this dark sky of contemplation? When an interaction becomes toxic I recognise the danger signs and get out fast, rather than stick around and try to change (aka ‘fix’) the man to what I think he could/should be. Or, more ominously, try to change myself to fit what he thinks I should be.

This is very good. I have come a long way. I can feel grateful rather than resentful.

I only have myself to blame for the hell inside my head (if it happens to be raging).

I’m sharing this with you in the hope that it will encourage you not to give up if you share a similar struggle. Recognise destructive thoughts and impulses to sabotage yourself and gracefully let them go. And when it all gets too hard, stop obsessing about yourself and do something to help others. It breaks the self-destruct cycle every time.

Recently I had a difficult month of constant depression. It was like I had been injected with a drug called ‘Grief and Despair’, but I kept going. Getting out of bed, teaching yoga, fire dancing, being a positive ray of light to everyone I crossed paths with, ‘faking happiness’ until I hopefully felt it for real.

One evening I was massively weary and contemplating the endless onslaught of shit inflicted on me, and conjured by me … and suddenly, like in the early AA days, I had a ‘God Shot’ and a voice in my head spoke to me.

It said, ‘Fiona, I cannot protect you from all the shitty people and awful things in the world, but I promise you, when you are going through hard stuff I am going to put Angels around you and they will help you.’

And suddenly my perspective shifted and I realised that during all these terrible times there had been amazing, wonderful people helping me through.

I could feel grateful for all the rotten shit going on because it gave me an opportunity to connect with beautiful, helpful people and be grateful for all the happier turns of events when they eventually came – because they always do if you let them.

It’s true – Angels are always around you if you take the time to look up and notice them. Sometimes the hardest thing to do is to be humble enough to accept help.

So, as I get not older, but better at living, I again think about a life partner. It would be a distraction. A ‘love of my life’ would take up all my time. How would I have a full-time job and have time to organise charity flights, youth outreach, etc. etc. etc?

If I was in love with a guy I would just want to lie on the couch and cuddle and eat yummy food and have sex.

Haha! Maybe one day. Maybe never. I’m grateful that I’ve learned that wonderful, fulfilling, peaceful love comes from many sources – including myself. I can be my own significant ‘other’.

If a ‘perfect match’, ‘life partner’, ‘husband’ or ‘soul mate’ are mere concepts marketed to us to make marriage appealing and to make women conveniently malleable to fit into conventional Western society, then, as a closet anarchist, I am prepared to never have ‘it’ happen!

I am open to multiple experiences with different humans, learning and growing for a time together and then moving on.

I’ve turned away from the contrived notions of ‘my best years are behind me’ and ‘wine is the solution’ (I cringe when I see framed pictures of that saying displayed in trendy gift stores).

I have learned to live a more youthful, adventurous life than ever.

It was very liberating and enlightening to let go of most of my personal possessions and strip away everything I own down to three bags, when I moved to the islands.

At 50 I am letting my life be an enlightened, conscious practice in acceptance of personal happiness. I think that’s better than the way I lived before.

There’s nothing special about me – I’m not extra strong.

I’m not extra gifted. One thing I am, is persistent. I just can’t give up.

I encourage you to never give up. Every single step you take in a better direction adds up to big, positive changes over time. And you arrive at the best version of yourself.’

  • Fiona Horne shares her incredible life story in the new book The Naked Witch (Rockpool Publishing $29.99), now available at all good book stores and online at