Well, what a bloody year it's been! Not exactly a traditional opener to a Christmas message, I know, but then 2020 hasn't exactly been the most traditional of years.
I hope everyone is doing as well as can be in the current circumstances, and are able to enjoy the season safely. It may not be shaping up to be a very merry Christmas at the moment, but with the Yuletide season we mark the longest nights in the depths of winter, and celebrate the coming of brighter days. So, too, I hope we can look to the year ahead, make it through this dark period, and can celebrate a brighter future to come.
In the meanwhile, to celebrate this Yule, I've written a short poem-y story: The Night Before Yuletide (Or: A Visit from Saint Tentacles). It's available to read now over on the Short Stories page, and features a piece of digital art by Jon Kaneko-James.
I had a lot of fun writing this silly short, and I hope it helps to bring some mirth this midwinter.
The Night Before Yuletide
(Or: A Visit from St. Tentacles)
Twas the night before Yuletide, when all through the halls
Not a spirit was stirring, not even the ghouls;
Sam Hain lay on his sofa with a mug of mulled wine,
Its heady aroma mingling with Christmas tree pine;
He was wrapped all snug in his robe of soft flannel,
While thinking of the creature he'd fought in Southall...
Also, the first Sam Hain Christmas story, A Krampus Carol, is currently free on Kindle until the 25th December. If you fancy more festive joy juxtaposed with otherworldly horrors, A Krampus Carol is available here.
Wishing you all a merry midwinter, a blessed Yule, and a happy and healthy Christmas. However you are able to celebrate the season, I hope you have as great a time as possible. May thy festivities be joyous (and safe), thy wine be mulled, and thy chimneys be free of tentacles.
Blessed Yule, one and all!
Embrace the magic that this long night bears,
And breathe deep the chill of midwinter airs.
Though this year is proving more than tough, we've still seen it through;
Even the darkest days, with light we manage to imbue.
May the turning of the Wheel this Solstice bring you hope and good fortune,
And the returning sun shine upon you as new light starts to burgeon.