I’m Holly Lyne, but I write as H.B. Lyne. I write dark, urban fantasy and I’ve been an indie author for just over 5 years. I’m a cat-loving Ravenclaw, bullet journal enthusiast and total geek. I’m obsessed with fantasy, sci-fi and superheroes, throw in a hefty dose of horror to round out the geekery.
I was a big fan of fantasy as a young child. The Chronicles of Narnia, Enid Blyton’s Faraway Tree books and so on, were frequently read. During my pre-teens, I developed a love of Point Horror and devoured dozens of them (I still have some in a box somewhere -shh!).
I soon progressed onto adult horror, chiefly Stephen King. I was reading IT and The Stand by the time I was about 14. I could frequently be found lurking in the fantasy section of book shops and libraries and I also found my way into the mythology section, where I truly discovered Norse and Greek myths for the first time.
Writing has just always been part of my life. I was writing stories as a young child and I remember writing one that my best friend illustrated. It was about a friendly dragon!
I wrote screenplays in my teens and even went to uni to study Drama, Film and Television with the intention of being a screenwriter. But I ended up dropping out of that degree and changing course completely, doing a degree in Religious Studies instead. I was really interested in the stories that formed the basis of religions around the world, in particular, those myths in the ancient world that had so fascinated me years earlier.
It wasn’t until my mid-twenties that the writing bug really came back. I had got really into Harry Potter before book 5 came out and while impatiently waiting for it, I found the dark and murky world of online fanfiction!
After reading some rather enjoyable yarns and more than a little utter drivel, I decided to have a crack at it myself. I started writing serialised stories and found that they were quite popular. My readers were urging me to write something original and “knock on some doors”.
I didn’t listen immediately. Self-publishing wasn’t yet a thing and I was daunted by the prospect of querying agents and publishers.
My husbeast (my affectionate nickname for my husband) and I then joined a roleplaying group and made the most amazing friends. We were playing a campaign about werewolves and the five of us became incredibly invested in it. We would email each other in character in between sessions and I found myself writing lots of extra material about my character and her backstory.
That writing became the foundation for my first novel, Seeds of Autumn. Obviously, I had to make huge changes to the world in order to make it original, but I had a wonderful story and I wanted to share it. I discovered indie publishing and have never looked back!
That story became a four-novel series, plus a set of short stories and I have so much more to tell about that world and those characters. I drew heavily upon Norse and Greek mythology, as well as elements of Celtic and even Japanese myths as well. There are powerful gods at play in my world and my shapeshifters call themselves the Chosen of Artemis.
My new book, In The Blood is set in the same world but a different city and centres on new characters. It’s set about 15 years after the events of my first series.
Initially, this book was going to be entirely separate. It wasn’t even going to have shapeshifters in it. It was about a psychic girl and vampires. But I wrestled with the plot, trying to join together two ideas and it finally clicked that it needed to be set in the same world; a world that I already knew inside out. Those two plot strands suddenly came together and made total sense.
Now I have this grand plan for a parallel series and cross overs!
I am a huge fan of big, immersive worlds. Especially those that have generated massive fandoms. It won’t come as much surprise to know that I am inspired greatly by J.K. Rowling and that I am a dedicated Harry Potter fan!
But in contrast, I’m also really influenced by Stephen King. I love the darkness he explores, the shades of humanity that make us all uncomfortable. He leans into the supernatural while still making his books feel absolutely real. It’s a rare skill.
I would also love to be as prolific and as popular as him one day! #goals
If you’d like to get to know me better, you can connect with me on social media and of course, listen to the podcast to hear Angeline and myself chatting about all things worldbuilding every two weeks.