OFFICIAL BIO

Maia Toll is the best selling author of the Indie Award and Nautilus Award winning book The Illustrated Herbiary. While published in 2018, the seeds for The Illustrated Herbiary and the other books in the Wild Wisdom Series (The Illustrated Bestiary, October 2019 and The Illustrated Crystallary, September 2020) were planted years earlier when Maia apprenticed with a traditional healer in Ireland where she spent extensive time studying the growing cycles of plants, the alchemy of medicine making, and the psychology of working with humans and illness. These experiences reawakened an interest in natural philosophy and mysticism which had been a large part of Maia’s academic studies at The University of Michigan and New York University.

Translating the lessons of the natural world for the modern seeker led Maia to open a small shop called Herbiary in 2006. Herbiary now has locations in both Asheville, NC and Philadelphia, PA (and online!). Maia has been featured in a PBS special, had a recipe published in The New York Times, gotten photographed by National Geographic Traveler, and been called “a real life Professor Sprout from Harry Potter” by Forbes magazine. She has taught Botanical Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, West Chester University, and Pennsylvania Hospital. She regularly teaches at conferences and festivals where she encourages people to use patterns and metaphors from the natural world to help them understand and grow within their own lives. Maia lives in Asheville, North Carolina, with her life and business partner and their two ridiculously spoiled dogs.

Press & Promotional Information: click here.

For information on new releases and appearances, click here to sign up for Maia’s newsletter.

 

CONTACTS

Interview or speaking inquiries, team@maiatoll.com ↠

Wild Wisdom Series book media, publicity@storey.com ↠

Represented by: Laura Lee Mattingly at Present Perfect Lit ↠

Find Maia on Instagram and GoodReads.

F.A.Q.

How did you end up an apprentice to a traditional medicine woman in Ireland?

Listen to this episode of the Peaceful Power Podcast to hear how I chose Ireland and found my teacher, Gina McGarry.

What was your inspiration behind the Wild Wisdom series?

The first book, The Illustrated Herbiary, grew out of a memoir I was working on about my time apprenticed to a traditional healer in Ireland. Each chapter of that memoir draft started with a whimsical herb description. People were smitten with them! So I put the memoir aside for a time and focused on those gem-like descriptions. That was the start. As the herbal gems turned into a book, I became interested in expanding to explore all three of the ancient medicine kingdoms— animal, vegetable, mineral— which are all so important in modern magic and mysticism.

What advice would you give people just beginning their journey into the magical and mystical?

Trust yourself. While the work appears to be outward facing, ultimately, it’s inward facing. In order to be a clear channel for energy, you have to keep clearing your own energies, including your feelings and thoughts. Which essentially makes walking a witchy path quite similar to working with a Jungian therapist. When you get to know yourself and your own inner-worlds of thought and emotion intimately, you’ll begin to trust yourself and your own intuition.

How did Kate O'Hara come to illustrate the Wild Wisdom Series?

Ha! That’s a favorite question. People figure Kate and I are fast friends, but the truth is, we’ve never even talked on the phone! I chose Kate from three artists proposed for the series by my publishing house. Kate worked with the art director while I worked with my editor. For the first book, it was a large game of whisper down the lane: me, to my editor, to the art director, to Kate, and back again. Now, the art director contacts me directly, but there’s still that intermediary between me and Kate.

At first I thought this whole set-up was a bit weird. I kept waiting for the moment when someone would propose that we all hop on Zoom. But overtime I’ve come to appreciate it. Kate reads my words and interprets them however she interprets them. This adds another layer of meaning and interpretation… then the reader comes in and adds their thoughts and overtones… The end result is a layering which adds depth and richness. 

Learn more about Kate O’Hara here.

CONTACTS

Interview or speaking inquiries, team@maiatoll.com ↠

Wild Wisdom Series book media, publicity@storey.com ↠

Represented by: Laura Lee Mattingly at Present Perfect Lit ↠

Find Maia on Instagram and GoodReads.

OFFICIAL BIO

Maia Toll is the best selling author of the Indie Award and Nautilus Award winning book The Illustrated Herbiary. While published in 2018, the seeds for The Illustrated Herbiary and the other books in the Wild Wisdom Series (The Illustrated Bestiary, October 2019 and The Illustrated Crystallary, September 2020) were planted years earlier when Maia apprenticed with a traditional healer in Ireland where she spent extensive time studying the growing cycles of plants, the alchemy of medicine making, and the psychology of working with humans and illness. These experiences reawakened an interest in natural philosophy and mysticism which had been a large part of Maia’s academic studies at The University of Michigan and New York University.

Translating the lessons of the natural world for the modern seeker led Maia to open a small shop called Herbiary in 2006. Herbiary now has locations in both Asheville, NC and Philadelphia, PA (and online!). Maia has been featured in a PBS special, had a recipe published in The New York Times, gotten photographed by National Geographic Traveler, and been called “a real life Professor Sprout from Harry Potter” by Forbes magazine. She has taught Botanical Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, West Chester University, and Pennsylvania Hospital. She regularly teaches at conferences and festivals where she encourages people to use patterns and metaphors from the natural world to help them understand and grow within their own lives. Maia lives in Asheville, North Carolina, with her life and business partner and their two ridiculously spoiled dogs.

F.A.Q.

How did you end up an apprentice to a traditional medicine woman in Ireland?

Listen to this episode of the Peaceful Power Podcast to hear how I chose Ireland and found my teacher, Gina McGarry.

What was your inspiration behind the Wild Wisdom series?

The first book, The Illustrated Herbiary, grew out of a memoir I was working on about my time apprenticed to a traditional healer in Ireland. Each chapter of that memoir draft started with a whimsical herb description. People were smitten with them! So I put the memoir aside for a time and focused on those gem-like descriptions. That was the start. As the herbal gems turned into a book, I became interested in expanding to explore all three of the ancient medicine kingdoms— animal, vegetable, mineral— which are all so important in modern magic and mysticism.

What advice would you give people just beginning their journey into the magical and mystical?

Trust yourself. While the work appears to be outward facing, ultimately, it’s inward facing. In order to be a clear channel for energy, you have to keep clearing your own energies, including your feelings and thoughts. Which essentially makes walking a witchy path quite similar to working with a Jungian therapist. When you get to know yourself and your own inner-worlds of thought and emotion intimately, you’ll begin to trust yourself and your own intuition.

How did Kate O'Hara come to illustrate the Wild Wisdom Series?

Ha! That’s a favorite question. People figure Kate and I are fast friends, but the truth is, we’ve never even talked on the phone! I chose Kate from three artists proposed for the series by my publishing house. Kate worked with the art director while I worked with my editor. For the first book, it was a large game of whisper down the lane: me, to my editor, to the art director, to Kate, and back again. Now, the art director contacts me directly, but there’s still that intermediary between me and Kate.

At first I thought this whole set-up was a bit weird. I kept waiting for the moment when someone would propose that we all hop on Zoom. But overtime I’ve come to appreciate it. Kate reads my words and interprets them however she interprets them. This adds another layer of meaning and interpretation… then the reader comes in and adds their thoughts and overtones… The end result is a layering which adds depth and richness. 

Learn more about Kate O’Hara here.

Press & Promotional Information: click here.

For information on new releases and appearances, click here to sign up for Maia’s newsletter.

NEWSLETTER

Find out about new books, events, and program announcements first. We don’t share your info and we’ll only contact you with big news.



NEWSLETTER

Find out about new books, events, and program announcements first. We don’t share your info and we’ll only contact you with big news.