Today on my blog I am welcoming Lyra Wolf into the Indie Spotlight! There’s even a recipe for delicious a spiced honey cake at the end – so stay tuned…if you subscribe to Lyra’s newsletter you will receive a whole ebook of recipes based on food and drink from her Nine Worlds Rising books!
Lyra Wolf is a Swiss-American author of fantasy and mythic fiction. Raised in Indiana, home to a billion corn mazes, she now lives in Central Florida, home to a billion mosquitoes. She enjoys drinking espresso, wandering through old city streets, and being tragically drawn to 18th century rogues.
When Lyra isn’t fulfilling the wishes of her overly demanding Chihuahua, you can find her writing about other worlds and the complicated people who live there.
Lyra has earned a B.A. in History and M.A. in English.
Welcome to my blog, Lyra! Congratulations on the recent release of your second book, Chaos Rising, which I thoroughly enjoyed! What made you decide to publish your books independently?
Oof! I spent a year deciding if I wanted to stay independent or go trad. Seriously, I woke up in cold sweats during the night. Do not recommend.
I had to really zero in on what I wanted. What could trad offer me, vs what could I do myself?
In the end, the main deciding factor came when I realized this would be a six book series. If I went trad, I would have to sell my rights to them, which cool, that’s how publishing works, however…My concern was if the series didn’t perform as well as the publisher liked, they would cancel the series half way through and then, due to them owning the rights, I wouldn’t even be able to finish the stories of the characters I have grown to love.
I didn’t want to risk the loss of these characters, nor the ending I am working towards. It is integral to me that this series is completed and the story I envision is told all the way through.
Staying independent gives me the certainty that this series will be finished.
Well I am very glad you didn’t risk losing these characters as I am on tenterhooks to find out what comes next in the story for each of them!
What are the benefits of being an indie author?
I think this is the most popular answer always given this question, but it’s because it is the truth. For me, and many indie authors, the main benefit is control. I can source my own professional editor that believes in the story and is not going to try to twist it into something else. I can set my own pace and deadlines, which allow me to publish relatively quickly. I can find and contract amazingly skilled cover designers that will work with me on branding.
It’s really exhilarating to be able to have a say in all the layers of producing a book, from start to finish. Is exhilarating the right word? Maybe exhausting? No, no. It is exhilarating.
What challenges do indie authors face?
While having control is fantastic, it also has its own price, and that is being the wearer of many hats (some of them silly with bells on the ends), each needing big chunks of your time. As much as I want to be writing 100%, I have to split time between marketing, sourcing various professionals, social media, and building a brand. It can get really draining really quickly. But, that’s what all my bags of emergency chocolate I have stashed away in secret drawers are for.
Being an indie author is very much being a small business owner, with all its stressors and rewards.
What advice would you give to aspiring indie authors?
Be kind. Be supportive. Be your authentic self, because YOU is what sets you apart from everyone else. It’s very easy to get lost in the hustle, and start looking at the top of the mountain you are climbing, but you have to ground yourself and take it one step at a time.
There are so many wonderful writing communities throughout social media, especially on Facebook and Twitter. I’d encourage anyone to especially join the 20booksto50 Facebook group, as it’s filled with authors of all levels sharing what works and giving support.
What have you learned from being an indie author?
Perseverance and consistency is key! Being an indie author isn’t a sprint, but a marathon. I have to remind myself of this fact daily when I fall on my face onto the pavement.
And finally…What else can we look forward to seeing from you in 2021?
2021 is going to be a busy year for me with lots of exciting releases! Chaos Rising, book 2 of The Nine Worlds Rising series, just released April 9th, with book 3, That Good Mischief, slated for release late 2021.
In summer I will also be releasing a novella, titled Thunder, Blood and Goats.
Of course, there is also ANOTHER super secret project that will be releasing this year and… that’s all I can say about that. I cannot wait to share it with you all.
Thank you very much for joining me on my blog today, Lyra! I can’t wait to read That Good Mischief and find out more about the secret project!!
Truth and Other Lies (The Nine Worlds Rising, Book 1)
Nothing is trickier than the truth.
All Loki the trickster god of Asgard wants is a quiet, peaceful life where he’s free to needle Balder, occasionally stir up the inter-realm porridge pot, and get Thor to dress in women’s garments (for all the best reasons).
Getting beset by sudden, painful, and terribly inconvenient visions of blood, ash, and death are definitely not on his to-do list. But, because of some small, ridiculous remnant of caring that refuses to be extinguished, Loki feels he must save Asgard…and that means warning Odin, his least favorite god (next to Thor).
But getting the gods to believe the boy who cried Fenrir is harder than it looks, and time is running out, not just for Asgard, but also for a mortal woman named Sigyn who may just hold the key to Loki’s future.
Loki is about to find out the hard way that the only thing crueler than truth are the lies behind it all.
Buy Truth and Other Lies here:
Chaos Rising (The Nine Worlds Rising, Book 2)
Let’s start Ragnarok, they said. It’ll be fun, they said.
Nothing pisses off a trickster god more than being imprisoned for five hundred years and not being able to annoy Thor. There are other reasons, secrets, and promises behind Loki’s rage, but that’s for Loki to know and the gods to find out—preferably painfully.
When the chance to start Ragnarok presents itself, Loki feels the apocalypse is as good a way as any to burn Asgard to the ground. And, it is, until the gods reveal their own teensy, tiny little surprise for Loki.
Suddenly, Loki has every reason in the worlds to stop them from ending. But this is Ragnarok, and one does not simply stop the apocalypse.
Chaos is all well and good, so long as Loki is in charge of it. Except chaos isn’t about to start taking orders from anyone, not even the god of pot-stirring himself, and it has a universe to destroy…
Buy Chaos Rising here:
That Good Mischief (The Nine Worlds Rising, Book 3)
Temporary cover – cover reveal coming soon!!
A lover’s quarrel is one thing, but your lover turning into a thousand-foot fire giant?
It wasn’t supposed to be like this.
Loki and Sigyn had gone full Midgardian, settling down in California, with Loki going off to toil for their daily bread. So what if his nine-to-five is actually working as a knife-for-hire? Ocean views aren’t cheap, and neither are engagement rings.
When Sigyn collapses, Loki senses a darkness growing within her, and he knows only one god who may be able to stop it before it possesses her completely. However, asking for help from the man you swore to never see again carries its own price.
Even with Ragnarok on the table again (and, again, not Loki’s fault…really), it’s the least of Loki’s problems, especially when buried secrets start surfacing.
Lies are unraveling, the truth is spinning, and consequences are flying faster than Loki can run and he might lose Sigyn forever.
Either to the darkness, or to his own lies.
Pre-order That Good Mischief here:
Lies, Knives, and Apples (Free stand-alone novella for newsletter subscribers!)
Never cross a trickster when death is on the line..
For Loki and Odin, it was supposed to be a typical night out for a couple of Norse gods with the regular drinking, carousing, and contests to see who could eat the most whole roast cows in a row—in other words, the usual.
But when a group of Jotnar attack—totally throwing a spear in their plans, Odin is mortally wounded, and only one of Idunn’s golden apples can save his life.
There’s just one problem…Idunn is missing, and everyone is pointing the finger at Loki (who really resents that he’s always the first god they suspect, even though they usually are right).
Between getting his back thrown out (literally, Thor rips out his spine in a tantrum) and Odin sliding closer to death with every second, Loki has his hands full…of knives.
It’s a game of triple-crossing a double-cross, which should be child’s play for the trickster god. But with the fate of Asgard and the man he loves hanging in the balance, even Loki’s luck may run out…
I have a love affair with food, and because of that, I mention food as often as I can in my work. One food that makes an appearance quite a bit are honey cakes…either being eaten, or thrown during fights with Jotnar in your cousin’s fortress during a wedding gone wrong.
ANYWAY, here is the recipe I created myself for a Spiced Honey Cake, just the way Loki would make it if, you know, he baked instead of just stabbing everyone.
Spiced Honey Cake
Because there is always an occasion for cake, even if the occasion is murdering your enemies.
1 cup flour, whole wheat1 cup flour, all purpose1/2 tsp baking soda1 tsp cinnamon 1/4 tsp clove1/4 tsp nutmeg1/2 tsp salt3/4 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature1 cup honey1 tsp vanilla extract4 large eggs1/4 cup sour cream (can sub with yogurt)1/4 cup chopped walnuts (optional)
Pre-heat oven to 325F.
Grease a 9-in round cake pan.
In a bowl, place flours, baking soda, cinnamon, clove, nutmeg, and salt. Whisk together. Set aside.
In a separate bowl, place butter, honey, vanilla, and eggs. Mix well. Stir in flour mixture, sour cream, and (if desired) walnuts.
Once mixture is well combined, pour batter into the prepared cake pan.
Bake for 45-55 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Let cool 20 minutes in pan on wire rack. Invert cake onto serving plate. Allow cake to cool before serving.
If desired, can be dusted with powdered sugar or topped with fresh fruit.
Who’s next on Indie Spotlight?
Jonathan Nevair is a science fiction writer and, as Dr. Jonathan Wallis, an art historian and Professor of Art History at Moore College of Art & Design, Philadelphia. After two decades of academic teaching and publishing, he finally got up the nerve to write fiction. Jonathan grew up on Long Island, NY but now resides in southeast Pennsylvania with his wife and rambunctious mountain feist, Cricket.