Every once in while , I see an email from a blogger or reviewer asking about how I get ARCS and review copies .
Firstly , an ARC is a copy of an unpublished book . ARC= Advance Reader/Reviewer copy . But you probably know that already . Now the question is back to , how do I get it ?
I will try to answer that question and explain all the ways to get ARCS as best as I can . Here I will discuss all the primary ways and some extra ways to get both ARCS and Review copies .
Let’s start with simple things ,
Who gets an ARC / Review copy :
As said above , ARCS are advance reader copies . These are copies of books that are printed before the book is officially released and hits the stores . And as the name itself says , these are meant for reviewers .
It doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to be a book blogger . Are you a regular reviewer on the amazon or goodreads ? Hola ! You’re on board with the other reviewers !
Where do I get them ?
No definite answer . There are a dozen ways to get them !
Review Programs :
Review Programs are where publishers offer their books for free in return for reviews . You have to apply and get approved before you are allowed to request copies . However , you can only choose from what the publisher is offering . There are different requirements for each program . Most of them only allow only one or two books at a time and require that you post the review before requesting more . They’re an amazing way for new bloggers to start getting books . You can see my Book Blogger Programs list and sign up for one or more of them .
Blog Tours :
Blog Tours are run by publicity companies and you’ve probably heard of them before . They offer publicity services to authors and one of these services include reviews from bloggers . You can join these companies and sign up for their virtual book tours to get review copies and ARCS .
I have a list of of these companies , if you need it .
Request a copy directly :
Do some research on the book and find the publisher’s email id . You can usually find it hidden in their website somewhere . If the publisher is the author itself , i.e , if the book was indie-published , get the email of the author . Tell them about why you think they should send you a copy.
ARCS are expensive . If you request one , you’re going to have to put the cost of the ARC and some more in the author’s / publisher’s pocket . You have to show them how you’ll do that in your email . Tell them of your traffic , unique visitors , followers , etc . Add a little about why you want the book ( been dying to read the second book in a series ? Tell them that ! ) because you gotta appear like you’re actually interested .
While requesting a book via email , be sure ask the right publicity . Don’t send a request to HP about an Avon book that you want , even though they’re just branches .
Here’s a list to get started with :
- HarperCollins + imprints
- Macmillan + imprints
- Random House + imprints
- Penguin + imprints
- Simon & Schuster + imprints
Good luck with getting approved !
Goodreads Firstreads :
I have been quite lucky with this one . You can review the books you receive or not , but from my experience , I’ll advice you to throw a review always if you want to keep your feet wet there . I did not receive a book even though I won it and boom ! I haven’t since . So whatever it is , just add a review . A simple one or two lines is enough to keep your luck up.
It’s a newsletter you can sign up for . They always have a book or two you can request on all their newsletters ( yes, all ! ) and most of them are print copies . I signed up for this since someone told me this was a great way to get ARCS . I have not requested any books because I was not able to .
This program is only for those who are US based . Although they offer a few to those from Canada , it’s not much and it’s just a waste of space in your inbox . As for as internationals go , don’t even waste your time signing up here .
The Unpopular methods :
Goodreads Groups :
Let me just make it clear that I find it really hard to believe that no one ever brings this up . Goodreads is more than just a shelf keeper . It is a book lover’s paradise ! If you poke around, you’ll find things no one told you about . For me , these groups were one such thing .
There are several groups on GR dedicated to connecting authors and readers . A lot of authors post in these groups about wanting reviewers and all you have to do is send a reply that you want to join in .And there you go . You get a review copy . No approvals by no one .
You can start here ,
Sign up to Macmillan’s newsletter and receive update about their books and ofcourse , get early reading copies . Not for internationals again *sighs*
Unbound worlds run giveaways for sci-fi books OFTEN . There’s a high chance you’ll win atleast a few . I’m not signing up though . My email id is flooded enough already .
Sign up to authors’ newsletters . You’ll be surprised many of them always offer for their readers to become ARC readers or VIP readers etc . Don’t sign for a lot of them though , you’ll get your inbox filled with too many than you can ever go through .
Following Publishers : Following publishers on twitter and other places is something you could consider doing since they hold a lot of giveaways . Thanks to Karen@BookerTalk for pointing that out .
Note for Bloggers :
I highly recommend that you put up a review policy even if your blog’s small . You’ll get a ton of emails with review requests even if you had just started . So the review policy will help you narrow the email down to what you want . And read a lot about book blogging and requesting ARCS directly . It is not easy to request them and you need to have some knowledge about the workings of a marketing house to know if you’ll get approved .
All the best with your blog !
Are there other ways to receive ARCS that I forgot ? If yes , tell me what they are in the comments below .