Monday, 25 May 2015

The Great Self-Published Fantasy Blog-Off -- The Halfway Point


On June 1st we will be half-way through the first stage of The Self-Published Fantasy Blog-Off. Which feels like a good point for a state-of-the-nation catch-up.

By September 1st each of the ten bloggers/blog-sites will have chosen (and reviewed) their champion from the slush-pile of ~26 novels given to them. In phase 2 each blogger/site will read (and review if they like) the nine other champions and give each a mark out of 10. The book with the highest score will be our champion of champions from the whole selection of 267 novels. All ten bloggers will review the overall winner.

So far we've had:

Upward of 30 reviews, ranging from mini to fulsome.
At least 4 rapturous reviews.
Only 2 unfortunate author melt-downs.
36 blog posts from our bloggers and a good number of blog posts from observers and authors.
7 general blog pieces arising from the exercise.
9606 hits on the main blog page.
A bazillion tweets sporting the #SPFBO tag.
& 0 deaths!

So, how are they doing?

Officially 94 of the 267 novels have been cut (many with high praise). 18 more have been selected for full reads &/or promoted to local finals. Leaving 155 to be considered.

Unofficially the effort is closer to completion than these figures indicate.

Individual status reports:

1. Sarah Chorn of Bookworm Blues

Has considered 10 of 27 novels. A miracle considering her trials of pregnancy and ill-health. Help is available should the load prove too great.

2. Steve Diamond &co at the twice Hugo nominated Elitist Book Reviews

3 books left to consider. 

3. Mark Aplin &co of the award winning Fantasy-Faction

Has yet to start but feels confident that the sizeable team at Fantasy-Faction can meet the deadline.

4. Mihir Wanchoo of Fantasy Book Critic

Is down to six books to consider in more detail.

5. Lynn Williams of Lynn's Books

Is halfway through at the halfway point!

Has finished his degree work and will make the project his #1 priority over the summer. Shouldn't have a problem getting everything done before the deadline.

7. Bob Milne of Beauty in Ruins

Has considered 10 out of 26 and is confident of completing within the 6 months.

8. Ria of Bibliotropic

Is down to 6 books that need reading. Expects to make a big dent in this during June.

9. Tyson Mauermann of The Speculative Book Review

Has 8 titles left to decide on. Foresees no problem in completing before the deadline.

10. The guys at Fantasy Book Review

Are considering their last 6 titles.


  1. Thanks for the update, Mark. Because of this contest, I've met some really talented authors and read some great books. Thanks again for doing this.
    Have a great day,
    Shawn Wickersheim

  2. Meltdowns? Heh... I hadn't heard. Now I'm morbidly curious to know what happened...