Easter Eggs are awesome, right? I’m not talking about the holiday, the chocolate bunnies, or even those gross peeps that some people like to eat (seriously, what are they made of, gooey styrofoam laced with sugar crystals?) No, I’m referring to the mysterious “Easter Eggs” that artists of all types hide in their work. 

While I believe artists have always done this, I think this practice really blew up with video game programmers. Game developers would hide entire secret levels, crazy pictures, tokens or items in their software for gamers to find. It’s kind of a game of hide and seek. Sometimes these items were intended to pay tribute to some pioneer in the developer’s field, or to pay homage to someone or something they respected. Disney artists have done this in their movies for years.

If you like popular fiction, you might have already read, or at least be familiar with the novel, Ready Player One. It’s a great book, and it almost entirely revolves around this theme.

Those of you who follow me might know that I’m a Utah Jazz fan (NBA Basketball team.) Back in 2011, my wife and I were at the game after which the team’s legendary coach of 20 plus years, Coach Sloan, decided to retire after a scuffle with one of the players. We could tell something was wrong as we listened to the radio post cast. In our experience, Coach Sloan had never waited so long to meet with the media after the game. Once I digested the crummy news, I decided I wanted to honor him in some way, so I applied his name to one of the characters in a story I was writing at the time for The Crimson Pact Anthology. Since then, I’ve been slipping the names of Jazz players in my stories. It’s become a fun “Easter Egg” for me as an author. 

How do other authors you read do this? Share in the comments below.

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Justin Swapp

Justin was born with an active imagination on a U.S. naval base in Spain, but has spent most of his life in the shadows of the Rocky Mountains of Utah. He is bilingual, and has lived all over the world. He has four children; two boys, and two girls, and an enduring wife. He doesn't have any pets that he's aware of, but his children have been known to hide things under his bed.

In his free time Justin loves to read, write, and play games. He enjoys his close friends, and loves to make people laugh. To learn more about Justin, or his work, you can visit him at www.justinswapp.com

Justin is the author of The Magic Shop. He has also been published in several anthologies, including The Crimson Pact (Volumes 1, 2, and 5), The Memory Eater, and Short Sips: Coffee House Flash Fiction Collection 2.
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