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[GUEST POST] Yolanda Sfetsos on Inspiration: Crowley, the Goetia & Demonology

Wife. Mother. Writer. Bibliophile. Dreamer. Animal lover. Intrigued by the supernatural. Horror freak. Zombie enthusiast. Movie & music fan. Slave to her muse. Yolanda Sfetsos lives in Sydney, Australia with her awesome husband, lovely daughter, and cheeky cat. Her latest book, Hell of a Ride, is now available for pre-order from Samhain Publishing. You can visit Yolanda on her website, Goodreads, and on
Twitter as @yolandasfetsos.

Inspiration: Crowley, the Goetia & Demonology

by Yolanda Sfetsos

Hi there! It’s nice to stop by the SF Signal again. Thanks for having me over today.

My name is Yolanda Sfetsos and my latest urban fantasy book will be released late this month. This is actually a Sierra Fox series spin-off novel, and focuses on a character called Lavie Grye. It’s a fun and dangerous road trip story that takes one hellish turn after another while the main characters drive down the east coast of Australia. A demon hunter and an actual demonic prince have strapped themselves into a vintage 1963 VW Kombi to chase down a duke from the Ars Goetia.

When this story started to take shape I did a lot of research and found myself delving into the translated section, which was done by Aleister Crowley and named The Book of the Goetia of Solomon the King. Every demon mentioned in my novel is based on one of the 72 mentioned in this book. I gave them their appropriate powers and even appearances, though I did change several things to fit my story. I even went as far as choosing one of the alternate names mentioned, and even featured Crowley himself.

I spent a lot of time reading about this dark individual, as well as the many demons he catalogued. Crowley was as wicked as he was fascinating. He was an occultist, a ceremonial magician, a delusional individual who believed himself to be a prophet. I’d heard his name being dropped in supernatural stories before, but it didn’t prepare me for what I found out about his bizarre real life.

The hours I spent reading Crowley’s book were informative and made my imagination run so wild that these creatures actually provided a new dimension to this story—one that reveals just how deep Lavie’s connection to demonology happens to be. Not only does she have a vast knowledge of the supernatural, but by actually summoning demonic spirits she learns a hell of a lot more than she could have learned just by studying texts. There’s a price to pay for this and sometimes it comes in the way of making enemies. But ultimately, many of them become a lot more than just teachers. Making demonic friends is risky and can make her vulnerable.

I’ve always been fascinated by demonology and have read countless articles and texts about it. I find the subject intriguing, and incredibly inspiring. Through Lavie, I found a whole new level of awesome research that I have no doubt will help in future story ideas.

Hell of a Ride is many things: a road trip book, a study of evil, a love story, the search for self-acceptance, and realizing one’s own potential when the stakes are high.

I really enjoyed the time that I spent researching, writing and revising this book. I hope you do too.

Thanks for reading,


It only takes one spark to start a bushfire…and no one sparks like a demon.

Elsewhere, Book 1

Lavie Grye has everyone fooled into believing she’s over the untimely death of her aunt. Truth is, she’s stuck in struggle town, dealing with bottled up grief by kicking some demonic butt. But when a hot, tempting demon named Saul comes knocking for help, she can’t turn him down.

There’s a high-ranking demonic duke loose on the eastern side of Australia, literally scorching his sigil into the land. Unless he’s stopped, he’ll destroy the world’s intricate network of ley lines.

Lavie and Saul head out on a road trip to the next city Saul thinks the three-headed demon and his crazy conjurer partner will be targeting: Melbourne. Along the way, Lavie discovers the danger burns a path all the way back to a well-hidden family secret. And, with Saul’s help, begins to learn how to be comfortable in her own skin.

That is, if they can defeat the threat, ensure no more safe havens are destroyed-and manage to evade the killing shadows of Saul’s past.

Warning: This book features a feisty demon hunter and a demonically sexy prince, embarking on one hell of a road trip. Buckle your seatbelt-jumping the fire line can get dicey.

About John DeNardo (13013 Articles)
John DeNardo is the Managing Editor at SF Signal and a columnist at Kirkus Reviews. He also likes bagels. So there.
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