It’s finally arrived: the latest edition of Hilda’s adventures – Raggedsock – is now available all over the world and perhaps a few other places!
As you may expect by now, Hilda and William will be facing new strange people and this adventure takes them to a faraway land where they will face all kinds of new problems to deal with. Of course our witch isn’t the feeble kind so things should work out in the end. I think.
From the distant land of Nihon a visitor comes by Hilda’s and Wiliam’s door. An almost similar one visits someone else in Fairy land. This is bound to become the start of a new adventure for the wicked witch and her wizardly companion. A journey brings them to ice, monsters and people with axes and swords. After Raggedsock your life will not be the same any more!
Last week you were exposed to (or treated to) the cover of the latest Hilda adventure. It is now my pleasure to hand you the first chapter of the story. I really hope you will enjoy it! (And if the title of this chapter reminds you of an ancient Western series, that would not be coincidental.)
Yes, this means you. You should read this if you are into Hilda’s adventures. You may have heard already that last year November, during Nanowrimo, I wrote an entire new Hilda the Wicked Witch book. Volume 16. It’s about Hilda’s younger years. This book contains lots of pointers and references to the previous books about our favourite witch and it will be an eyeopener for everyone. I promise you that. At least I hope I’m doing that well. And suddenly I had an insanely funny idea.
While I rework the book (it’s still in an ugly state at the moment) I plan to make a list of hints and pointers to the other books. When the book comes out I want to hand three readers an opportunity to win a paper copy of the same book. How? It’s simple: read Hilda 16 (not yet of course, as it isn’t available) and count the number of hints you find that point to other books.
When we get near that time I’ll post more information about this idea on the blog, also on how to get your tally to me and the process I want to use on deciding on 3 winners. (See, I’m postponing that because that detail still needs to be figured out. )
Now to keep things honest and fair, I offer you the opportunity to send me e-mails in which you tell me that handing out free books is a very bad idea and that I should stop thinking about it. Or you can leave me a note here in the comments or on facebook, Twitter or Google+, telling me how much you like the idea.
A while ago I was in my car, driving home. I was thinking about life, the universe and everything (I know, I shouldn’t read The HitchHiker’s Guide to the Galaxy in my mind while driving) when I suddenly had the best idea for the next Wicked Witch book. And that’s not book 15 because that’s already written. It’s also not book 16, because that’s already written. It’s for book 17. Because that’s not written yet.
(I may not always make sense but I have my numbers in order. So far.) What happened, you may wonder. Or not.
As I was going along I was thinking about the e-mails I have received from some of you. (Yes, at times I get e-mails from Hilda-fans.) Without going into too much detail (as book 17 still has to be written) I thought that I should dedicate this book to the people in dire circumstances who find some joy and support in the adventures of the witch and the wizard. The hospitalised people, the people who are ill without having to spend time in hospital beds too often.
Their stories, some of them heart-wrenching, are so touching and incredible that this is something I feel I have to do. So Hilda book 17 will honour those people. To give them even more support from the witch and the wizard.
I sincerely hope that they are able to read this, that they hear about this in some way or another. You all are wonderful people and if there is anything I can do for you in my writing to make your life a little nicer then I will do that.
Paul, Hilda, William, Babs, Charisma, Obsi and Grim.
The madness is over. The 50.000 words (well, a bit more in my case) are written.
Nanowrimo 2014 is officially behind me.
I’ve ended this month with a story of 83815 words which in all honesty is a lot more than I had dared to hope for. And the story’s not done yet.
So, here’s the last run-down of things that have flown or crawled by in this story. You may recognise some of them once the book is out. (Which won’t be next month, I can promise you that. I first have to get Hilda 15 to a proper end.)
We learn more about the origins about walking huts;
swamp gas can smell like different things;
Hilda makes a prediction about her future without knowing it;
there’s something happening with oranges;
there’s also a real magic show;
and there is a form of disappointment. Magic isn’t all fun and laughter.
I hope you enjoyed this little walk along the path of this year’s Nanowrimo experience!
Welcome to the Nanowrimo report after 25 days of writing.
The word count for Hilda 16 is currently well over 75.000 words. The story is still going strong but it needs a lot of tender loving care because writing at this speed is demanding that the gods of Typos come over for frequent visits!
What’s been going on in there so far since the last update:
Some insight on how old magical people can become and how they do it;
still no idea how old Hilda actually is (and I’m not going to ask. Toads make even more typos than speeding writers);
The madness which many people around the world lovingly call Nanowrimo is on track since 20 days. My story is still progressing nicely and I had the most amazing moment of synchronicity that I could hope for. Or not even that.
I was writing part 15 of my Hilda series when Nanowrimo started. Because of that I started writing part 16 even when 15 isn’t done yet. In book 15 I had reached a point where Hilda was struggling with something traumatic of her past.
So there I was, writing that specific part in her past in part 16 (which is about her youth) and at one point I was writing in 15 AND 16 simultaneously so I could get the feelings and emotions of both experiences perfectly aligned. How special is that? Very special, yes indeed; I’m glad you agree with me.
Right then, what has been happening since the last update?
They lost a teacher.
Forbidden rooms aren’t that forbidden for our witch, even at a young age.
Did I mention that I know who Hilda’s first boyfriend was? Well, I do.
Miss Hepatia Strunk wears pink.
If you’ve read “Charisma the young witch” then you’ll find out where the ring came from. Otherwise you will have to read Charisma. 😉
The word count so far is 62.980 words so this is going to be a larger than usual Hilda book, it seems. I’m sorry.
Something amazing happens with respect to Baba Yaga’s parents.
That’s it for this update. I hope you’re bouncing off the walls to get your hands on this book. In that case: happy bouncing, because it’s not finished yet. 😉
The madness called Nanowrimo has been running for 10 days now. As usual I’m not very worried about reaching the goal of 50,000 words as my current word count for the project is at 37,228 words and I’m far from being done with the story. Not bad for ten days.
I am thoroughly enjoying this story and I’m certain you will also be entertained by all the things that happen in Hilda’s younger years. There are brooms to be flown and a school to be visited, to mention just a few things. Are there dragons, you ask? Well, do polar bears have white furs? Of course there are dragons!
What mentionables are there this time?
School. Yes, Hilda goes to school.
As I said: there is something like a dragon. Perhaps more of them.
We meet several teachers, some of which are not who or what they appear to be
There is music. Of sorts. You’ll learn about an instrument you probably never heard of. (I for one never did!)
How will the first flying lessons go? Do you have any idea?
If you read Hilda – Aiaia, you’ll know who’s coming to school too!