I have an exciting (to me at least) update about the Self-Published Fantasy Blog off contest, and it concerns my humble entry, The Exercise Of Vital Powers. To my surprise, #SPFBO judge Kaitlin aka “Kitty G” read my debut novel this week during her trip to Worldcon in Finland, and even more surprising than that was discovering that she really liked it. Yesterday she posted an initial review on Goodreads, awarding my book a 4.5 stars rating and it’s fair to say it has made my year. Knowing that my story struck a chord with a reader who has no vested interest in kissing my behind has gone a long way to making me feel a little less like an imposter.

You can read Kaitlin’s review HERE, and I believe a full review is still forthcoming. While I’m obviously very happy at the moment, I still don’t believe I have any chance of actually winning, but I don’t care. I think I’ve just acquired my first true fan, and subsequent to the posting of the review, a handful of other readers added The Exercise Of Vital Powers to their to-read shelves, which is more than a dared hope for.

Just to round up where we are at at this stage of the contest, according to Mark Lawrence’s blog 92 of 300 entries have been eliminated from the competition so far. At the moment The Exercise Of Vital Powers is not one of those 92 books so, for the time being at least, I can still say that my novel is (in theory) a contender for SPFBO 2017.

If you are interested in keeping up to date with the progress of the competition click THIS LINK to visit the relevant post on Mark Lawrence’s blog.


I am still running a reader poll asking, What Initially Attracts You To A Book By An Unknown Author? Please take a moment to cast your vote; you have until next Wednesday when the poll closes.