In his youth, Snell enjoyed a series of scholarships. They brought him to Cambridge, where his writings on Austin Osman Spare and magical theory brought him into contact with the young chaos magic movement in the 1970s. He had been interested in the occult before, but this comparatively rigorous and modern style of it, largely shaped by fellow scientist Peter Carroll, drew his special attention.
Since 1972 he has written and published several books noted for their impact on late 20th-century magic and humor. The ones most often referred to may be SSOTBME - An Essay on Magic (1974) and Thundersqueak (1978). Words Made Flesh (1987) is written from a more philosophical point of view and notable for its original outline of the "information model" theory of magic that our universe could be a virtual reality—as later explored in The Matrix. It is an example of the author's ongoing studies in the relationship between magic and rationalism.
- SSOTMBE: An Essay on Magic, Its Foundations, Development and Place in Modern Life
- SSOTMBE Revised: An Essay on Magic. Mouse That Spins, 2002. ISBN 0904311082
- Thundersqueak, with Liz Angerford and Ambrose Lee. Mouse That Spins. ISBN 0904311120 (3rd rev. ed., 2003)
- Words Made Flesh, Mouse That Spins. ISBN 0904311112 (2nd rev. ed., 2003)
- BLAST Your Way to Megabuck$ with my SECRET Sex-Power Formula. Mouse That Spins. ISBN 0904311139 (2nd rev. ed., 2003)
- BLAST... has been published in German as Zaster-Blaster, Zapp Dir den Weg zum GiGaGeld mit meiner GEHEIMEN SEX-KRAFT-FORMEL.
- The Good, the Bad the Funny, with Adamai Philotunus. Mouse That Spins, 2002. ISBN 0904311104
- What I Did in My Holidays: Essays on Black Magic, Satanism, Devil Worship and Other Niceties. Mandrake Press Ltd, 1999. ISBN 1869928520
- Uncle Ramsey's Little Book of Demons: The Positive Advantages of the Personification of Life's Problems. Aeon Books, 2005. ISBN 1904658091
- Hellgate Chronicles
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