What Goes Up….

So….

Based on my last post, one might think I was riding high in the saddle.  Not only did Pilgrimage get a stellar review but was also selected as Booknest‘s finalist in the 2017 SPFBO.  It’s quite an honor and I still keep waiting to wake up and realize it got thrown out and a more deserving book took its place.  No matter what else happens, I can savor the moment.

And then that happened.

(Muse:  Lemme guess:  someone peed in your pool?)

A little, yes.  Prompted by the good review I got in the contest, another reader picked it up and left a decently scorching review on Goodreads, pretty much finding fault with everything about the book.  I think theyu got bored and wrapped it up before saying my grandfather was a baboon, but it was a near-miss.

(Muse:  Hey.  Would you accept the argument that Stephen King is probably the most consistently-popular spec-fiction writer of the last forty years?)

Sure.

(Muse:  Based on Goodreads reviews, his best-rated book is The Stand.  It still has about 3% one and two star ratings.  The latest edition on Amazon has about 6% one and two star ratings.  No matter how good you are, bad reviews are gonna happen.)

I know.   Bad reviews happen.  It’s easy to know that intellectually.  It’s tougher on the heartstrings.  I didn’t curl into a fetal position or anything but the tone and content of that review was quite a contrast from the previous one, and did get a bit of a wince out of me.  If nothing else, it is a reminder that not every book is everything to all readers.

So….ego raised up, and then brought back down with a little reminder.

This book didn’t win over that reader.  Perhaps my next one will.  Only way to find out is to keep writing.

In the meantime, I again send heartfelt thanks to the folks who did enjoy it.

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First Review for Pilgrimage to Skara

Greetings.  Yes, it has been a long time, and real-life, as it likes to do, has been kicking my ass in about five different ways.

No matter.  Good news brings me back.  Back in May, I entered author Mark Lawrence’s 2017 contest Self-Published Fantasy Blog-Off (SPFBO).  Essentially, it’s three hundred books divided into ten thirty-book blocks, with one “best” book floating to the top of each block and the ten best going head-to-head.

Now, I didn’t (and still don’t) really expect to win this thing.  That’s a real challenge, to overcome 299 other entries and no matter how good you are, those are long odds.  I did hope to get a good review (thorough, not necessarily glowing) out of it and a little exposure.

I never expected the positive response I got.

Reviewing on behalf of Booknest.EU, Leona Henry (follow on twitter at @authorlrh) was very kind and indicated that she enjoyed Pilgrimage a great deal.  She did–rightly–point out that I am lousy at copy editing (she didn’t say me specifically, but it was me) and that a bunch of those errors are still in the book.  I agree and admit it’s a weakness.

Otherwise, she was quite complimentary and I am humbled.  Here is a link to the review.

So thank you to Ms. Henry, to Booknest, and to Mr. Lawrence for giving me this chance.

I look forward to where things go from here.  Regardless of whatever happens, this is a feather in the cap.

Cheers!

 

EDIT:  I originally put the 2016 SPFBO, not 2017.  I will chalk that up to my excitement.

Hat in the Ring

So….

I have done exactly what the title suggested.

A fellow author brought to my attention this contest, over on the blog by author Mark Lawrence.  I think it is a really neat idea, so what the hell, why not?  I entered Pilgrimage to Skara (still available on Amazon, for those you still looking for a fun, exciting read) and contrary to my normal procrastination mode, I made it in just under the wire.

I was assigned to Booknest.eu , which I was unaware of but looks like a really awesome review site.

Now, it is very possible that pilgrimage will get bounced before it even has a chance.  Someone might read it and go, “Eh, not my cup of tea,” and toss is aside.  But there’s that saying, “Nothing ventured, nothing gained.”  I see nothing but upside for this, so again, what the hell, why not?

I will let y’all know what happens.