One of the perks of being a book blogger is that it *automatically puts you in the running to receive an ARC, or advanced readers copy.
ARCs are “almost-complete” versions of books that publishers send to reviewers to promote the title and gain feedback. This practice isn’t only advantageous to the publishers as the book reviewers literally get FREE books to read (and review) ahead of everyone else. It’s certainly one way to set your book blog apart (although ARC reviews aren’t incredibly uncommon in the blogosphere).
Here’s where I retract my earlier wording. Being a book blogger doesn’t “automatically” put you in the running to receive an ARC. At least when you first start out, you have to put in the time and work to request the title from a publisher which can be done through multiple avenues.
While the idea of receiving a free book is certainly enticing, I still haven’t requested an ARC after three years of blogging for these reasons:
𝙄’𝙢 𝙣𝙤𝙩 𝙨𝙖𝙩𝙞𝙨𝙛𝙞𝙚𝙙 𝙬𝙞𝙩𝙝 𝙬𝙝𝙚𝙧𝙚 𝙢𝙮 𝙗𝙡𝙤𝙜 𝙞𝙨 𝙖𝙩 𝙘𝙪𝙧𝙧𝙚𝙣𝙩𝙡𝙮.
From what I understand, requesting an ARC is also like sending publishers an invitation to scroll through your blog. This is because they need to determine from your content if you’ll do the book justice in your review. Not only that, it seems that blog statistics affect your chances of receiving an ARC as publishers would rather send a review copy to a blogger who has a larger, active following.
I’m not ready to put my blog out there yet
(why does it sound like I’m trying to get into the dating scene and not just trying to get a review copy😂). I’ve only just been able to establish a consistent posting schedule after three years of blogging, and I’m still struggling to find my niche in terms of content. I also don’t think my stats are impressive enough to convince a publisher to send me a copy, so that’s also something I want to develop more first. Of course I’ll never know if unless I actually try to request an ARC, but I want to get my blog in order as much as possible before.
𝙄 𝙖𝙢 𝙩𝙝𝙚 𝙗𝙞𝙜𝙜𝙚𝙨𝙩 𝙢𝙤𝙤𝙙 𝙧𝙚𝙖𝙙𝙚𝙧.
I am always falling behind on my Goodreads reading goal of reading 50 books in 2019, or roughly one book per week. I can blame it on me being a slow reader (which I truly am), or I can attribute it to the fact the I am the biggest mood reader. 𝘐𝘧 𝘐 𝘥𝘰𝘯’𝘵 𝘧𝘦𝘦𝘭 𝘭𝘪𝘬𝘦 𝘳𝘦𝘢𝘥𝘪𝘯𝘨, 𝘐 𝘸𝘰𝘯’𝘵. This trait helps me finish stories I actually enjoy, but also means I never get to a looot of books.
Related: Are You A Speed Reader?
Before I request an ARC, I have to be certain that I won’t just let it collect dust
(or ✨eDust—digital ARCs are a thing too!). Sure, I shouldn’t force myself to read (~ reading is just a hobby blah blah blah and all that jazz~), but I would feel bad not reviewing an ARC after a publisher selected me to receive one.
I haven’t got to the point where I’m ready to commit myself to a book, ARC or not. I’m comfortable with my current reading patterns and don’t feel the need to change them for a free book or early review.
𝙃𝙤𝙬 𝙬𝙞𝙡𝙡 𝙄 𝙠𝙣𝙤𝙬 𝙄 𝙬𝙞𝙡𝙡 𝙡𝙞𝙠𝙚 𝙩𝙝𝙚 𝙗𝙤𝙤𝙠?
This ties into the previous point. As I’m such a big mood reader, I base a good 80% of my reading choices off of book reviews. Reading a raving book review from a book blogger I trust usually makes me want to read the book instantly. I guess that makes me an impressionable person, but I’m also rarely disappointed! So,
ʜᴏᴡ ᴡɪʟʟ ɪ ᴋɴᴏᴡ ᴛᴏ ʀᴇᴀᴅ ᴀ ʙᴏᴏᴋ ɪғ ɪ ᴅᴏɴ’ᴛ ᴋɴᴏᴡ ɪ ᴡɪʟʟ ʟɪᴋᴇ ᴛʜᴇ ʙᴏᴏᴋ ʙᴇᴄᴀᴜsᴇ ᴛʜᴇʀᴇ ᴀʀᴇɴ’ᴛ ʀᴇᴠɪᴇᴡs ғᴏʀ ᴀ ʙᴏᴏᴋ ᴛʜᴀᴛ ʜᴀsɴ’ᴛ ʙᴇᴇɴ ᴘᴜʙʟɪsʜᴇᴅ ʏᴇᴛ?
I guess that’s where I come in—I become the book blogger writing an early review so that other readers can gauge how much they will like a book and if they should pick it up. Yet, I’m not ready to fulfill that role since I’m not prepared to take a chance on a book I may or may not like.
(Oof, I hated how dramatic that sounded. But, it all boils down to me not wanting to change my reading habits 😬).
𝙄 𝙙𝙤𝙣’𝙩 𝙬𝙖𝙣𝙩 𝙢𝙤𝙧𝙚 𝙥𝙝𝙮𝙨𝙞𝙘𝙖𝙡 𝙗𝙤𝙤𝙠𝙨.
While I heard that it’s quite hard to receive a physical ARC, it’s actually not something I’m interested in
(not like I could even get one, got em!¿). I wrote a post called How To Be A Minimalist AND A Bookworm a while back, and in it I discussed how I want to downsize the items in my life, including books. Publishers send eARCs, so this really isn’t much of a reason not to request an ARC, but I thought that I would add it anyways.
I’m not sure if there’s an option when using bigger sites like NetGalley or Edelweiss where you can choose the type of format you would like to receive a book as. It seems silly that there wouldn’t, but please do share if you have a clue
(please save me the Google search 😅).