Monday, February 4, 2019

Q & A #1 | ADVANCE READER COPIES AND HOW TO GET THEM

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Every now and then, I get questions from readers regarding about book blogging. I am not sure if I am the best source of any book blogging information, really, but I’ll try to answer them as best I could. As a reader, you have to take everything with a grain of salt, of course. I compiled those questions and narrowed them down to these series of Q & As.

Part 1 is the foremost among these questions is ‘How to get an ARC or Advance Reader/Reviewer Copy’.

Answer: There are different ways how, and they all require different levels of commitment on your part as a book reviewer. Not every suggestion below is based on my personal experience, you have to try them yourself. Take it or leave it, sort of.



WHO GETS AN ARC?

This is something we have to cover first to answer the main question, because not everyone simply gets a copy. To get an ARC you have to be a librarian, bookseller, educator, reviewer, blogger or in the media. ARC providers or publishers will ask librarians, booksellers, educators, and media entities to provide their organization and proof of affiliation. As a reviewer or blogger, providers or publishers will ask your main platform, site url, how long have you been blogging, and how many unique pageviews you get per month on average. You may want to sign in with Google Analytics to provide you with such information. And if you are cross-posting to other sites, you have to provide them that url, as well.


WHERE TO GET AN ARC?

Netgalley 
Sign up. Fill up all the information needed. They have a help desk on how to make everything in your reviewing and reading life easier. Make sure to list all your preferred genres and favorite publishers. It helps when requesting for a copy. Different publishers have different rules on approving requests and posting reviews, read them.

Edelweiss
Sign up. Like Netgalley, you have to fill up all the necessary information and your preferences. Review copies are divided into those you can ‘Download’ or ‘Request’. You will be asked for a strong reason for requesting a copy every time.

Goodreads
There are groups that offer ARC. I am not a member to any of these groups and most of them are private groups too. So, you have to experience this yourself and find out if it suits you.
Goodreads also offers giveaways. It’s legit! I’ve won a couple of times and they sent me printed copies.

First to Read
Penguin Random House offers this program to US residents only. And I really wish PRH Canada offers it too.

Penguin Teen
These are for Young Adult, Middle Grade, and Picture Books. You need to fill out their Blogger Request Form. Again, this is only available for US residents.

Blog Tours
Being on social platforms, look out for blog tours. Most Blog Tours are run by publicity companies (there are plenty, believe me) and they offer services to authors, which include reviews from bloggers. You sign up for their virtual book tours to get review copies.

Newsletters
Most publisher websites offer newsletters for their followers, opt to sign up. They [almost] always host giveaways. At the very least, you will know which books are hot on the shelves and which are most expected.
Publishers also offer their imprints’ emails. Although, most of them do not approve individual costumer request.

The Book Blogger List 
Let authors, publicist, and publishers find you instead. If you are diligent in keeping up your blog, they will keep you on their list.

Book Sirens
As the website says, it is the easiest way to be a reviewer. If you are reviewing for free [like me], you have to be aware that this site [same with Netgalley and Edelweiss] is free for reviewers but not for authors. You have to read thoroughly before signing up.


Quick reminders for new bloggers, though. (1) I highly recommend that you put up a Review Policy, no matter how small your site is or irregular your reviews are. Review request will frequent sooner or later. Your Review Policy will help you narrow down to what you really want to read or host and when to best accommodate them. (2) Review copies costs both authors and publishers. And digital galley proofs are limited. Decline offers if you cannot accommodate them as soon as possible. If your request is approved, be kind enough to provide them with a review, even a short one. If you really can’t provide one, give them an honest reason why. (3) The truth is rejection will happen more than you expect it, keep requesting anyway. Here's my rant on how I handle rejection.

I hope part one of this Q & A series provided you with some answers. Part two will try to answer why I decline or do not respond to some review requests. I’ll be brutally honest, PROMISE!

My resources is limited, if you can add more ways to get ARCs, please comment below.


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