Saturday, 15 May 2021

SPFBO 7 - the Self-Published Fantasy Blog-Off 2021 - PHASE 1

This page is for phase 1 of SPFBO 7  -  read more about the contest here.

This year the gender info is self-reported, with 12 authors choosing not to answer.

A list of most of the entries is on Goodreads thanks to Hiu Gregg.
From the list I discovered that:
40 entries ~13% have 100+ ratings on Goodreads.
 97 of the entries have 25+ ratings.
 0 of the books were published 10 or more years ago - the oldest is 9 years old.
 0 of the books have more than 1,000 pages. The longest is 986 pages.
 5 of the books have over a 1,000 ratings, the most ratings is 3,769.

Here's the traditional wordle made from the titles of this year's entries:
Fantasy Book Critic picks its final semi-finalist!
Lynn's Books review Book of Secrets.
Before We Go Blog reviews The Trials of the Core.
Ten titles cut on FanFiAddict.
Becky M reviews Path of Darkness.
Becky M reviews Defiant.
Stone Magus is reviewed on Lynn's Books.
Final round 1 cuts from Team Weatherwax.
Team Weatherwax give us a semi-finalist review.
3 more books cut by Becky M.
The Fantasy Inn review Red Harvest Moon.
Team Weatherwax give us a semi-finalist review.
More cuts from The Weatherwax Report.
A third semi-finalist is chosen on The Weatherwax Report.
Breakaway is reviewed on The Fantasy Inn
Berserker is reviewed on Lynn's Books.
Fantasy Book Critic choose a third semi-finalist.
Fantasy-Faction cut five in one blow.
The Gatekeeper's Staff is reviewed by The Weatherwax team.
More cuts on The Weatherwax Report.
The Weatherwax team review Thunder Heist.
Bitter Sky is reviewed on Booknest.
A 2nd semi-finalist for The Weatherwax Report.
More Weather, more Wax, more cuts.
Fool's Proof is reviewed on The Weatherwax Report.
Cuts from the Lynn's Books/Critiquing Chemist team.
Team Weatherwax review The Truth And Other Lies.
Becky M reviews Daughter Of No Worlds.
The Weatherwax Report delivers more cuts (wax off).
Fantasy Book Critic name a 2nd semi-finalist.
Saint Dorian And The Witch is reviewed on The Weatherwax Report.
Before We Go Blog chooses a semi-finalist.
The Weatherwax team review Ye Olde Robin Hood.
The Weatherwax Report chooses a semi-finalist.
First cuts on The Weatherwax Report.
The Weatherwax Report reviews Cold From The North.
Three books cut on Lynn's Books.
The Tryphon Odyssey is reviewed on Before We Go Blog.
Becky M reviews Casting in Stone.
Lynn's Books review One of Us.
Three books cut by Becky M.
A Time of Ashes is reviewed on Before We Go Blog.
Fantasy Book Critic culls some titles and picks a semifinalist!
Becky M reviews James: Witch-Hunter.
Lynn's Books reviews Deathborn.
Beware Greeks Bearing Gifts is reviewed on Before We Go Blog.
Graves Robbed, Heirlooms Returned is reviewed on Lynn's Books.
Before We Go Blog reviews I Kill Monsters.
The Lady of the Kingdoms is reviewed on Booknest.
Flesh Eater is reviewed on The Weatherwax Report.
Booknest reviews Birthright.
The Weatherwax Report reviews Kings & Daemons.
The Stars Within & Shimmerdark are reviewed on Booknest.
Booknest review The Mortal Blade.
Stranded is reviewed on Lynn's Books.
Booknest review Emergency Shift.
Ryswyck is reviewed and cut on Before We Go Blog.
We Men of Ash and Shadow is reviewed on The Weatherwax Report.
Before We Go Blog reviews Unstoppable Shadow.
Becky M reviews Oh Wretched Moon.
The Lords of the Summer Season is reviewed on The Weatherwax Report.
The Child of Chaos is reviewed on The Weatherwax Report.
Booknest review Blood Spells.
Bound Fairy is reviewed on Booknest.
The Weatherwax Report reviews The God Game.
A Dragon's Chains is reviewed on The Weatherwax Report.
The Wayward Wizard is reviewed on The Weatherwax Report.
The Weatherwax Report reviews The Other Magic.
Booknest review Flames of rebellion.
The Weatherwax Report reviews This Quest Is Bullshit.

209 of 300 contestants are still in the running!

red = cut
+ indicates semi-finalist

Kerstin Espinosa Rosero
Burn Red Skies
Better Hero Army
A.J. Cerna & Derek Alan Siddoway
Djinn Tamer: Starter
A.F.E. Smith
Dawn Rising
Talulah J. Sullivan
Blood Indigo
A.R. Henle
The Museum of All Things Lost & Forgotten
S. Lynn Helton
Duplicity of Power
Carol A. Park
A World Broken
Jack Massa
The Mazes of Magic
Samuel Colbran
Raymond St. Elmo
As I Was on my Way to Strawberry Fair
Andrew Marc Rowe
C.M. Caplan
The Sword in the Street
Christopher Warman, Elan Marche
Seasons of Albadone
ML Spencer
Dragon Mage
Rohan M. Vider
Overworld, The Dragon Mage Sage
Melissa Wright
Seven Ways to Kill a King
T. Thorn Coyle
We Seek No Kings
Ryan Cahill
Of Blood and Fire
Matthew Travagline
Christopher Scott
Order of the Magi
Anthony Lowe
Mark Timmony
The Blood of the Spear
Chris A. Jackson
The Pirate's Scourge
Rune S. Nielsen
Doomsayer Prince
Alan Scott
Echoes of a Storm
Moud Adel
Twelve Jackals
Sean P. Valiente
The Lightning Knight
Alex Raizman
Andrew Hindle

Benedict Patrick +
Michael R Fletcher & Clayton W. Snyder +
M. L. Farb
A.M. Obst
Kevin Wright
Ryan D. Meier
Alli Temple
Joy Demers
A.J Rettger
Rachel Ford
Edward Hargreaves
Thomas J Devens
Zamil Akhtar +
Damien Shillingford
Joshua Kern
Cat Hellisen
Kenneth Buff
J.J. Egosi
Luke R. J. Maynard
E A McLaren
Brian D. Anderson & Steven Savile

Alex S. Bradshaw +
Olga Werby
Monica Enderle Pierce
Anthea Sharp
K.R.R. Lockhaven
Rob Donovan
Morgan Stang
A.K.M. Beach
Sascha Kersken


C. E. Page
David Nelson
M. Warren Askins
Orphan's Rite
Phillip Blackwater
Rising Shadows
Alyson Tait
Adam Digger Stolz
Squire George & The Dragon
Rosalind Tate
Christopher P. Walsh
As Fierce as Steel
Philip Dickens
M.A. Poole
Ghost Line
Joanna Maciejewska
By the Pact
Damon L. Wakes
Stephanie C. Marks
Sarah Lin
Blades Falling Softly
Mark Cushen
Little White Hands

Colleen Cowley
Raina Nightingale
Tristen Kozinski and Keegan Kozinski
The Darkness That Slept
Joe Coates
Out of the Dust
Jon Ford
The Ballad of the Songbird 
Ashley Capes
Bjørn Larssen
J.D.L. Rosell
The Throne of Ice and Ash 
Olivia Atwater
Ten Thousand Stitches
Dimitrios Gkirgkiris
Kova Killian
Claudia Blood
Tim Hardie
Hall of Bones
M. L. Roberts
David Schratz
The Crown of Death

Virginia McClain
Viljami L.
S. R. Cronin
She's the One Who Thinks Too Much
Kim Fedyk
Marian L Thorpe
Empire's Daughter
Alex Knowles
The Bright Lord
Ceril N Domace
D.L. Gardner
Rise of the Tobian Princess
Lena Alison Knight
Tim Stretton
Alicia Ellis
Brent Miller
Jacquelyn Benson
Lisa Cassidy
Heir to the Darkmage
Levi Jacobs
Daughter of Flood and Fury
Suzannah Rowntree
Marti Talbott
The Kings of the Seven Bells
Aaron S. Jones
Jeramy Goble
Eulogy for the Dawn
Alex Robins
The Broken Heart of Arelium
Tom Dumbrell
The Look of a King
Daniel Potter
Emergency Shift
Christopher Mitchell
Sarah Mensinga
Colin Adams
Eyes Last Seen Dying
L. D. Colter
While Gods Sleep
Lorain O'Neil
Stephen Rice
A Handful of Souls
Chris Behrsin
A Cat's Guide to Bonding with Dragons
Deborah Makarios
Restoration Day

Glen Dahlgren
Ryan Howse +
G.S Michaelson
D.K. Holmberg +
R.P. Lauer
Jimi Rodriguez
Kate Danley
Sara Jolene
Keith Deininger
JP Valentine
Ernesto San Giacomo
Jed Herne
Lyra Wolf
Robert Vane
Michael Raship
Derrick Smythe
Eva Sandor
Antoine Bandele +
Alesha Escobar
HL Tinsley +
D.W. Ross
Travis M. Riddle +
Paul Freeman
Paul J Bennett
A.L. Knorr
Craig Askham
Larema Dixon
Peter Blaisdell
Reeshi Ray
Marcus Lee +

T L Greylock / Bryce O'Connor
Shadows of Ivory
Liza Street
Blood Bounty
Jason A. Holt
The Klindrel Invasion
C. A. Lyness
U. G. Gutman
Winds of Strife
Rebecca Mickley
Ghosts of the Nightmare Gods
Olga Gibbs
Cait Reynolds
KE Wills
Faye in the City: With Her Dog Puffy
S. Kaeth
V.L. Kinnaman
Sasha of the Feral Sons: Adolescence
D. Wolfsbane
The Ninth Scripture: The Hunt
Chris Reign
Dive: Endless Skies
Emmanuel Akeyo
Tears of the old Gods
Val Neil
Dark Apprentice
Toby Bennett
The Spear of Akvaloon
Drew Montgomery
The Burial
Scott Kaelen
The Nameless And The Fallen 
Amy Maltman
A Journey Unveiled
Rebecca Bapaye
Legacy of Flame
Tim Marquitz
War God Rising
Israel Barbuzano
The Last of the Wicked
Scarlett Gale
His Secret Illuminations
Anela Deen
In the Jaded Grove
Douglas Lumsden
A Troll Walks Into A Bar
T.R. Preston
Wenworld: The World Inside the Crystal
Daniel T. Jackson
A.E. Bennett
Gathering of the Four
Michael E. Thom
The Vanguards of Scion
Willow Woods
Where I Belong

Michael S. Jackson
Ringlander: The Path and the Way
Jen McIntosh
Blood of Ravens
Ryan Kirk
Last Sword in the West
Matthew Davis
Red Sky Blues
Farida Mestek
Almendra's Quest
G. P. Gabriel
A Change of Blood
Alex H. Singh
Lamp of Light
By The Skies
D. A. Holley
Spirit of Shadow
Dezarea Dunn
Shannon Pemrick
Prophecy of Convergence
K R Gangi
Billy Ketch Allen
Good Blood
Eve Koguce
Neglected Merge
Thiago d'Evecque
Burning Promise
Phil Williams
Kept From Cages
J. D. Evans
Reign & Ruin
Jordan Rivet
Curse Painter
Anat Eliraz
Jewels of Smoky Quartz
Ellie Raine
Willow of Ashes
Anton Le Roy
Coyote Chronicles
Miles Hurt
J.R. Traas
The Rave (The Aelfraver Trilogy Book 1)
Michael R. Miller
Ascendant (Songs of Chaos #1
Nicolas Lietzau
Dreams of the Dying
Niamh Schmid and Rebecca Schmid
The Exiled: Of Shade and Shadow
Edward Nile
Old Bolts
Chandler Groover
Finnian's Fiddle
Meredith Hart
The Flame and The Blade
Jason J. Nugent
Sword of the Moon King

Allegra Pescatore & E. Sands
NACL: Eye of the Storm
Todd Herzman
Natalie J. Holden
The Outworlder
M J McBride 
Nor Do the Stars Shine There
Matthew Samuels
Small Places
R. E. Fury
Lost in a Dream
Heide Goody and Iain Grant
The Only Wizard in Town
Hûw Steer
Nicholas Jean-Pierre
W. V. Fitz-Simon
Waking the Witch
C.D. Gallant-King
J. R. Snyder
A Season of Ravens
James Pyne
kim alexander
The Sand Prince
Mikkel Høst
Up Against Mooneye
Jeffrey L. Kohanek
G.A. Everett
Phillip Murrell
T.M. Baumgartner
Shift Happens
Karim Soliman
Army of the Cursed
Christopher Matson
Jace Kang
Quantum Cultivation
Shane Scott
Rick Dietrich
Randall P. Girdner
The Wizard of New York City
L. L. MacRae +
A. F. Stewart
Past Legends 
Neil Beynon
The Scarred God
Leonard & Ann Marie Wilson
Lethal Red Riding Hood

Richard Nell
Dark Sea's End
Dave Dobson
The Outcast Crown
C.M. Lackner
Krista Jain
A Rokian's Curse
Jane Glatt
K.S. Marsden
David Stephenson
Casey White
Survival's Edge
Matt Larkin
The Gifts of Pandora
Tim Beeden
A B Endacott
Deliverance of the Blessed
Morgan Smith
Anthony Mitchell
Tomas K. Grizzly
Eternal Defenders
Alec Hutson
The Shadows of Dust
Mark Wells
College of Shadows
Bruce Pedersen
Bharat Krishnan
Privilege: A Trilogy
Kate Ramsey
V.A. Lewis
Bound and Broken (Melas Book 1)
Vista McDowall
The Lantern-Lit City
Gleneley Liesl Stander
Aaron Hodges
Avril Sabine
Eli Steele
Beneath a Brass Sky
Melissa Stone
Children of the Dragon
Krystle Matar
Legacy of the Brightwash
Carissa Broadbent
Rita A. Rubin
Lee H. Haywood
Fractured Throne - Part One

Ben Galley
The Forever King
P.L. Stuart 
A Drowned Kingdom
Rob J. Hayes
Along the Razor's Edge
John Ross Elliott
Mage Family
Dennis Liggio
Clayton Snyder +
S.D. Howarth
Devin Downing
The Dividing
Todd Maternowski
Old Cold Cannibal
S A Haycock
Brad Carsten
E.S. Barrison
The Mist Keeper's Apprentice
M. Sheehan
SkyView: Lord of The Wills
A.J. Austin
The Inner Lands: Something Stirs
W.J. Donovan
Journal of Resurrection
E.L. Haines
Stranger Back Home
Fowler Brown
Death by Miracle
Gareth Lush
A. A. Woods
J. C. Duncan
A Song Of Steel
Krista D. Ball
The Demons We See
Evan L. Grove
To the North
Rachel Rener
The Girl Who Talks to Ashes
The Deathless Ones
Michael E. Thies
Alex Mead
L.D. Inman
Ru Pringle
Roland J O'Leary
The Hand of Fire
Jeffrey Hall
Sword of the Scarred


  1. Just curious - has the gender ratio changed over the years SPFBO has been running?

    1. You can check them via the homepage - in the earlier ones they were guesses based on names - but I think it's been fairly stable in a 2/3rds 1/3 ratio.

  2. Excellent! First time submitter here, very excited. Thanks again for all this hard work Mark - and to all the bloggers! Sincerely, Hatboy, aka. Edpool on Twitter, aka. Andrew "Bad Cow" Hindle ... too many nicknames.

  3. Beware Greeks Bearing Gifts by Gareth Lush seems to appear twice in 4 and 10

  4. Hi there, Mark!
    I’m a first time submitter and I think I’ve erred with my mobi and ePub files upon upload. Can I update with a more readable, coherent file before the June 1st competition start? I’d really like to put my best foot forward in terms of presentation.
    Kind regards and thank you for the solid work in assembling these bloggers for this fantastic opportunity.

  5. First time submitter and delighted/terrified to be involved. A massive thank you to you Mark for creating this opportunity and to the bloggers for taking the time to consider our work.

  6. Curious, how are the blogs selected?

  7. Hi there, Mark! Looks like I missed the boat on this round. How can I find out when the next competition begins, and entries are being submitted?

  8. Soulbound by Bethany Adams was in 2017's SPFBO.

  9. Virginia McClain's entry also has AJ Rettger in the author column. Group six has a blank. Is it supposed to be AJ Rettger's book?

    1. I think it's just a copy/paste error as A.J. Rettger has their book in group 2 and the blank in group 6 has been filled with a different author.

  10. Was I ever in the running, or 1 of the first lucky 15 out?

    1. A bizarre question, particularly since you don't identify yourself...

  11. Apologies - I have spotted my contribution: 15 down - Before we go Blog. I had a minor panic attack, I want to die with honor with the 300 (299); just to be in the game is fab, thanks.