Hello, Fans of Speculative Fiction!
Well, it has begun...the opportunity to read the 30+ contenders for a spot on Marcher Lord Press' spring release list is up at www.wherethemapends.proboards.com. If you're so inclined to help choose the book Marcher Lord Press puts into print, you'll have to create a free account, and then at the top of the forums, you'll be able to access the Marcher Lord Select boards. Be warned, you must vote for three entries, so the contest won't be heavily weighted by folks who just drop in to vote for somebody they know and really don't invest in the process.
There's a pretty wide range of offerings in the fray, for sure. I, as an author, am permitted to vote, and how hard is it to choose the two books I will vote for along side my own!? Having a part in choosing one's own competition is daunting, to say the least.
It has been interesting to watch the guidelines of the contest unfold, as Jeff Gerke, the mastermind behind it all, tries to figure out how to mitigate human nature, basically. How to keep the contest form becoming solely about who can drag the largest number of their acquaintances over to the forum and force their click on the right entry, or how to head off any sneaky ways people might find ways to cheat. (I'll admit, some of those strategies have cropped up in the back of my own mind, and boy are they hard to ignore! I just keep reminding myself that in the long run, any paltry effort I might make to pad my vote count will probably fall far short of boosting my numbers above the other competitors, especially if my work doesn't speak for itself. All I'll succeed in doing is setting myself up for a bad reputation. So not worth it!)
But no matter what happens, the next couple of weeks are bound to be exciting! My prayer is that my blurbs on the forum right now speak for themselves and carry me into the next phase of the contest, where you readers will get a better feel for the actual writing in my novel.
So, if you think The Sword of the Patron deserves to have a beautiful cover and a spot on the bookshelves of the wide world, do go to the forums at WheretheMapEnds.com and cast your vote accordingly. No matter what happens, I keep reminding myself that the Lord has carried me this far, and He has planned how it will all turn out. I pray I have the strength of character to manage whatever outcome He deems proper.