Oh Well (bye #SPFBO-elicia)

Well, that went about as well as can be expected (although I did hope to make it past the first round of goddamn cuts … however, I’m learning from my experience on the judging panel for #SPSFC that even getting to the point where the judges will read your book is a bit of a struggle, and this is really pretty much exactly what I expected to happen).

Time to give up on depression- and anxiety- and impostor-syndrome-exacerbating fantasy contests until I can bring something more devastating (and ideally less wordy) to bear on the poor #SPFBO judges.

Should’ve listened to myself in April. I was pretty smart in April.

No but seriously, this was all I could have expected from a competition and at least it’s not dependent on clicks and votes and bullshit, it’s actual storytelling merit. I honestly can’t complain. At least someone read my words, and the finding was pretty much exactly what my Amazon reviews of pretty much all my books have led me to believe would be the case: half the readers were like “blargh, this is unintelligible gibberish, 2 stars!” and the other half were right.

I kid, I kid. Of course I’m disappointed, but enough with the stupid competition. In the meantime, I have science-fiction to read and review! Or I will soon, anyway. And this has given me a great insight into how to handle the inevitable fact that only three books can make it through to the semi-finals from each team. And only one book can win. And how to (and how not to) handle announcing the subsequent cuts.

No, I am not learning to be any more gracious with rejection, but on the other hand bite me.

Okay, see, maybe a little more graceful.

Look, the contest was over for me the second they didn’t pick Gabriel’s cover as the best one. That was objectively a mistake on their part and it completely undermines my respect for their opinions and in the process soothes the burn of their rejection.

I jest, but it is the thing I am closest to upset about in this whole huge waste of time and emotional capital. I already knew Bad Cow was going to be a tough sell.

So, *long wet sloppy fart* on that. Moving on.


About Hatboy

I’m not often driven to introspection or reflection, but the question does come up sometimes. The big question. So big, there’s just no containing it within the puny boundaries of a single set of punctuationary bookends. Who are these mysterious and unsung heroes of obscurity and shadow? What is their origin story? Do they have a prequel trilogy? What are their secret identities? What are their public identities, for that matter? What are their powers? Their abilities? Their haunted pasts and troubled futures? Their modus operandi? Where do they live anyway, and when? What do they do for a living? Do they really have these fantastical adventures, or is it a dazzlingly intellectual and overwrought metaphor? Or is it perhaps a smug and post-modern sort of metaphor? Is it a plain stupid metaphor, hedged around with thick wads of plausible deniability, a soap bubble of illusory plot dependent upon readers who don’t dare question it for fear of looking foolish? A flight of fancy, having dozed off in front of the television during an episode of something suitably spaceship-oriented? Do they have a quest, a handler, a mission statement, a department-level development objective in five stages? I am Hatboy. https://hatboy.blog/2013/12/17/metalude-who-are-creepy-and-hatboy/
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12 Responses to Oh Well (bye #SPFBO-elicia)

  1. Hey, half and half is good. And the rejection is rather poorly written so that’s a win.

    • Hatboy says:

      I honestly felt a bit sorry for them when I sent Bad Cow in for the contest. It’s a lot.

      Especially now I have an inside view of the discussions that go around and some of the stuff that gets submitted, I know they did the best they could be expected to, and I should be grateful.

      I’ll just … go ahead and be grateful to the judges who compared my writing to Good Omens, and cut the other half. Fair’s fair since that’s what they did to me, right?

  2. Hatboy says:

    I guess I was hoping to get some more visibility and reviews out of it, but meh.

    In fact, I thought one of the judging requirements was that reviews went up on Amazon and Goodreads and they haven’t done that yet. Maybe it’s just the superior #SPSFC judges who are expected to do that.

  3. aaronthepatriot says:

    “Half thought it was the writing was clever and compared it to the dry wit of Good Omens, others thought it was trying too hard or missed its mark with many of its jokes. And while the writing and plot are better than others we’ve read in our batch, the split in tastes means we will be saying goodbye to Bad Cow.”

    Well, that second sentence is promising, you tryhard you! Man, I’m sorry about this but it’s a rough world out there. Compliments while they crush your dreams is familiar to me from my singing days. Hang in there, man, your writing IS better than most others, count on it.

    “Why…would I lie???”

    • Hatboy says:

      Thanks bro. I know it. And like I tweeted, a divided audience is fine for readership and ratings because it evens out at 3+ stars usually. But in a Highlander-style battle royale, it’s not going to be a thing.

  4. BigFan says:

    Hi Andrew,
    A lurker for sometime,I saw this post and couldn’t go without posting something.
    I absolutely love your Books and have bought everything you have published. I thought you had quite a large readership and it was just your self depreciating humor that implied otherwise.
    Hoping that you will not stop with this phase and keep on going to the next phases. However if it does not provide you with a return for the hours you put in to write i can understand but will be really sad
    Not a native English speaker but a big SF reader and came across your books by chance and once i finished EEJIT was hooked straight away
    Whatever happens thank you for giving me so much enjoyment by sharing your incredible imagination by your books

    • Hatboy says:

      Well now I find myself at a loss for words.

      Thank you, mysterious stranger, and I’m so glad you’re enjoying the stories! I can only assure you, the show will go on.

      Two more collections of stories to put together and then Phase Two is officially behind us. You’ve given me new energy, thank you for speaking up at such a perfect time.

      In the meantime, starting next week I hope to have lots of reviews hitting the blog for some fun sci-fi for you to check out while you wait for my next!

      • BigFan says:

        Excellent News!!

        As i said before i honestly don’t understand why your books are not more popular i am not a critic but have read a lot of SF & Fantasy books and you are up there with the best for me. Only reason i can think of is that as a independent publisher the books are not given enough publicity.

    • Toon says:

      Good on you BigFan!

  5. Pingback: The Sphere: A Journey In Time: A (practice) Review | Hatboy's Hatstand

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