The Fellowship of the Egg.

I should have realised this would happen. Click found an egg. Not a chocolate one, a real one.

I can hardly castigate him since I didn’t actually specify ‘chocolate’ when I sent him out with Senga and Caligula. What with all the hysterics, I forgot about that part. Apparently his species lays eggs and he thought I was sending him on a child-stealing mission. It took some time to convince him that we don’t work that way here. I had to show him Certain (Ahem) Websites and also explain that we have special child-catchers called ‘social workers’ who take care of that sort of thing so the rest of us don’t have to.

Besides, I already have to keep a constant watch on the murderous tendencies of my own offspring. I really don’t have time to watch anyone else’s.

Anyway, home he came, dragging this egg. Oh, I recognised it at once. It’s nesting season for the Rarely-Glimpsed Slimy Swamp Things and they aren’t the friendliest of creatures at the best of times. It is indeed fortunate that they are so rarely glimpsed although the rarity of the sightings might owe more to the fact that few who see them survive.

A Slimy Swamp Thing egg is an extraordinarily dangerous thing to have in the house. There is the possibility of its parents tracking it by its pungent odour and worse, there is the possibility it might hatch.

Fortunately, Caligula has eaten it.

I am the eggman.

It’s egg-hunting time again. I had to explain to Click how this works. I hide eggs and he, Caligula and Senga can go and look for them. They can keep any they find.

The game is fun for me because I get to stay indoors while they wander the swamp looking for eggs I haven’t hidden. If I put real eggs out there, they might find them and the game would end. As it is I can look forward to hours of peace and quiet.

They can begin at first light. I will be having a lie-in. The fog that’s building up should add to the excitement.

With any luck, none of them will find their way back for a week.

Samurai weeding.

It’s spring, and the whipweed is especially lively this year. I can’t even step outside without the crack of chlorophyll ringing in my ears and whacking across my face. It wouldn’t be so bad if it wasn’t for the barbed stings.

So I have ordered the Samurai Weeding Tool. Layered steel with a razor edge. That should sort out the whipweed. And those people who keep coming around to demand tacks. They come around every year and I always tell them I don’t have and don’t want any, but they keep coming back.

This time I’d better be sure to get to the post box before little Caligula does. He likes toys.

Book release day.

It’s official. Jessica’s Trap is now released upon the world. So now, to Senga’s relief, I can stop talking about it and start talking about the next ones.

Samuel’s Girl is just about ready to send. Well, it’s probably been ready to send for over a year but I’m fussy. Norman’s House is first-draft-complete and part-rewritten with more tension. Victor’s Will is almost first-draft-complete. Demdike’s Return is sketched, as is The Apocalypse Show, but that last one cannot go out for a long time. It’s the end of something.

Ghosthunters, which is, paradoxically, the only one with nothing paranormal in it, is plodding along. I might use a different name for that one. It’s very different to anything else in the pipeline.

Aside from proper publishing, there are the self-published stories and more of those are planned. There is the short story book on Lulu (in the sidebar) which someone suggested might be good on Kindle. First I want to put the published Blackthorn family tales along with some unpublished ones, and perhaps a few more, into a book of their own. I like the Blackthorns. We get along very well indeed. Here’s a sample. And another. These won’t be in the self-published book because they are in existing anthologies and I see no point in competing with myself. I might not win, and how embarrassing would that be? No matter. The Blackthorns are always busy so there’s no shortage of new material.

The Alien Queen Mother once suggested I compile those Alienskin articles on horror-writing into a book. I’ve never done it. Perhaps I should. There are four years’ worth of them, assuming I still have them all, and they might be useful to someone. Then there is the Chronicle of Dume which I have yet to compose. A host of half-finished, nearly-finished and merely outlined short stories that would make another book or maybe two. Oh, and of course, that children’s book, Mirror-man, which might still work if I can reduce the death rate to less than three per chapter. Apparently modern children have gone soft and now object to wanton destruction and mayhem. Fortunately my own son, Caligula, is of old stock. That’s why I won’t be sending him to school. They’ll only send him back.

Now that I think of it, I have noticed a sharp decline in the rat population here and Caligula has been very busy making little crucifixes. I must remember to quiz him about this.

Ah, I hear the little half-man, half-waste-disposal-unit howling. I’d better see what he wants.

I expect Underbed Monster has escaped again. If only Caligula wouldn’t torment him so much he might stay where he’s supposed to be.

Circular linking.

If you click on the image of Jessica’s trap at the side, it will send you here. Take care with that, because if you click too often and too fast, your computer will enter an eternal loop and suck all the matter out of spacetime. Which will be a tad inconvenient for someone trying to sell a book, so please, don’t do it.

The reason that link sends you here is because I can’t work out how to put multiple links into the image. Oh, I can link you to the American Amazon or to the UK one or to other ones, to Barnes and Noble, to the publisher’s site for the PDF version or to the Kindle version.

Or I can just say ‘Look for Jessica’s Trap by H.K. Hillman on those sites’ and it’s easier for all of us.

Well, it’s certainly easier for me.

Just… whatever you do, don’t keep clicking that link. You might break the universe and if you do that, everyone will point at you and be very cross. There’s one consolation.

They won’t be cross with you for very long at all.