Tuesday, January 24, 2017


by Legami
Every now and then, I get book-related questions, through email or through the blog’s contact form, from different sorts of visitors – authors, fellow reader, students with paperwork, surveyor, and trolls. I’m not sure how many of them are actually my blog followers, but I do appreciate their effort in bothering to contact me (trolls included). I admit to having varied ways of neglecting them; oftentimes, it took me weeks before I can sort the interesting from the insignificant. Most interesting at times, it’s the trolls who have more significant questions, if you can believe that.

I was asked a few months back if I was ever declined by a publisher in Netgalley. I assumed that the question came from a fellow site user, who is pretty new at it, and have been recently declined. However, since my querier did not leave any contact information, I decided to answer this question here. And hopefully, this will help others, out there, who experienced the same.

The truth.

The answer is a resounding YES, I have. I was declined 56 times, the last one, in fact, was last January 14 of this year. Now, that was almost as many times I was approved. The general reason I got for being declined was that the publisher already hit their galley limit.  It probably meant that I sent my request too close to the publishing date, or a number of requests already came through before mine. However, there were three incidents wherein publishers declined me because they were dissatisfied with my profile information. They cited several reasons as to why. Some of these rejections even came from publishers who approved my previous requests. Some were even sequels to books I have reviewed for them before.

Keep at it.

Was I disappointed? Yes. Was I discouraged? No.  I just keep on requesting for other books I like. I continue updating my profile, because, of course, changes happen. And I keep reading and blogging.  And, then I get pre-approval from publishers. Not just for one particular book, but for all their new releases. To show them my appreciation, I request and review books from their racks every month. I can be a grateful bitch if I want to. 

There were times, too, when the author or a publicist will directly email their galley, or send download links, which is generous, of course. 

I am not trying to boast here. I am simply telling you, guys, good things also happen to hardworking and honest reviewers/bloggers.

Not just a reader.

Every time I get declined, I’d tell myself that it was not my loss; it was theirs because mine was another recommendation they will never have. What some publishers failed to see was that not all reviewers from Netgalley are just professional readers. Most of us are “book lovers”, we are born to read books. Readers like me will not just submit feedback for the galley, we will actually buy a printed copy if we liked it, take pictures of them, and put them on display or post them on social media. 
There are two motives for reading a book;
one, that you enjoy it;
the other,that you can boast about it.
~Bertrand Russell

Crazy as this may sound, but I even buy the audiobook when it becomes available. I became a completist of authors, because of some great galley proofs I’ve read.

My advice to my fellow NetGalley users, keep going to the site, keep requesting for books that appeal to you, and keep recommending; because you are there not for the rating, not for the pride of badges, but FOR THE LOVE OF BOOKS. For a bit of more cohesive advice on how to improve your approval rate, though, you may want to read Savy's post.


And this last bit is for the publicists who use “Review Opportunity” on their email heading:  Whose opportunity are you referring? May I suggest Barb Drozdowich’s Book Blogger Survey for references before emailing book reviewers?

Good day, everyone. Thanks for keeping with my ramblings.


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