SPFBO 6: Finalist Review Black Stone Heart

Black Stone Heart


A Wind from the Wilderness by Suzannah Rowntree – SPFBO #6 Finals Review

A Wind from the Wilderness

SPFBO #6 Finals Review

Fantasy-Themed Cookbooks

Fantasy-Themed Cookbooks

Multi-Book Review


Sigil Independent – Announcement & Freebies!

Fantasy-Faction is happy to host the announcement of a new self-publishers’ guild with aims to help self-pub authors with things most often reserved for those who are traditional published. Sigil Independent it launching today! After you’ve finished here, make sure you say hi to them in their /r/fantasy AMA March 1st. Good luck authors! – Jennie Ivins

Before we get started, I’d like you to consider your personal library. We’ll assume if you’re perusing this site you probably have a good vein of fantasy running through it, but please consider all the genres in your collection. And yes, that includes both digital and dead-tree editions.

If you would, please estimate how many books you own.

50? 100? 500?

Now consider that in the United States alone, there are on average of 800 books published or re-issued per day. That’s from just one country.

With such an overwhelming glut of books inundating us on a daily basis, the selection process in which we whittle down those 300,000 books a year to fill one of those coveted spots in our collection suddenly becomes critical. There’s just not enough hours in a day, let alone lifetime, to get through all those books. So how does one get the right book into the right reader’s hands?

What’s more, how does one author stand out amongst the crowd?

Doorway through the Library by Reinhardi

For traditional published authors the answer is a little easier since their publisher (hopefully) handles audience outreach. What’s more, audiences are usually more receptive since the publisher acts as a seal of approval, assuring readers this author is worthwhile simply for having been selected in the first place. This opens a lot of doors the self-publishers find decidedly shut in their faces.

Self-publishers carry with them the albatross of being a self-published author. Many times they are is assumed to not have been picked by a publisher because their work is considered substandard. There have been recent inroads in quashing this notion, Mark Lawrence’s Self-Published Fantasy Blog Off is dispelling some of the self-published stigma and demonstrating the quality out there. Sigil Independent hopes to build on this success.

It’s probably worth noting that both winners from the first two years of SPFBO signed with traditional publishers, while many other finalists received offers. And if you’ve followed SPFBO for the last three years, you’ll see some familiar faces if you visit our website, including inaugural winner and runner up Michael McClung and Ben Galley, Phil Tucker and Dyrk Ashton from year two, and current finalists Rob Hayes and Alec Hutson.

Sigil Independent - Book Covers

But back to our original question: Even if a reader is open to self-published authors, how does one match a reader up with the book s/he is looking for?

Sigil Sampler (cover)We at Sigil Independent aim to answer that question by going the old school Choose-Your-Own-Adventure route: Just answer a few questions over the course of a short fantasy story and you’ll be matched up with a sampling from one of our amazing stable of authors we’re sure you’ll enjoy. The approach is decidedly low-tech, but we at Sigil were raised on CYOA novels and can’t ignore the fun factor.

That’s the readers taken care of, but what can Sigil Independent do for self-published authors?

Our mission is to help bridge the gulf in perception of what it means to be a traditionally or self-published author, by emulating traditional publishers in everything but taking a chunk of author’s income. Because, although all Sigil authors are in the business of selling books, Sigil Independent isn’t a business. Instead, we’re a guild of likeminded self-published fantasy authors pooling our resources and expertise, which means no money changes hands. We may employ several traditional publishing best practices, but the guild is decidedly hands off when it comes to each member’s profits.

So please pick up a copy of our 500+ page sampler, hit up our site for more freebies, and stop by to say hello on Facebook and Twitter @sigilindie. And definitely make sure to check in on us at our AMA on /r/fantasy March 1st!


One Comment

  1. Avatar Swiff Justice says:

    Great group of authors on this site, and I’m excited to watch it grow. One thing that wasn’t mentioned – there’s an opportunity on the site to sign up as an ARC reader, so if you’re into getting books early and writing reviews, this is a total no-brainer.

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