I get a few people message me about how to get book ARCs from publishers and thought this would make a great topic for a blog post. For those that are newer, book ARCs are Advanced Reader Copies of books that are yet to be published. They are given out for marketing promotions and reviews to build up some momentum for the book release. Depending on where you are from they can also be called proof copies.
So how do you get ARCs? Well the good news is that you can get free ARC’s from Netgalley . It’s an online platform a range of publishers use to give out ebook copies of books in exchange for honest reviews. This is a great way to start off because it helps build a profile for you. When I started I only posted on Netgalley and Goodreads because I hadn’t started a bookstagram by that point. This helped me so much. It got me in the habit of committing to a review in a certain time frame. I ended up starting my bookstagram and added in reviews there too. There are a range of sites you can check out on google but Netgalley is the only one I have personally tried and had success with. One thing to keep in mind is how many books you request to review. I went a bit crazy and requested a few and before I knew it I had 9 books to do a review for in a month. It was a long month. On your account you have a Feedback ratio and will only be approved when you stay above a certain %. This keeps you committed to the books you request. If you ask for books and don’t do reviews, your requests won’t be accepted by publishers.
There are Facebook groups that are dedicated for finding reviewers for new authors such as YA Book Stop . I have only done this once and you deal with the author directly. You can also look into the Goodreads groups. The key thing to remember is keep your word. If you commit to a review, you need to post it.
Some people prefer physical ARCs but there is no magic way to get these. I built up my bookstagram account and once I hit 3,500 I started emailing publishers introducing myself. I listed previous books they published that I enjoyed and my favourite genres. I included upcoming releases I was interested in and my favourite authors. I let them know in return for ARC copies I would provide a review as well as a feature on my bookstagram account. I included the links to my relevant social media platforms for them to review. Some I heard back from and not from others. You can find publisher’s emails on the contact us page on their websites.
You only really get one chance to introduce yourself so I would wait until you have a strong following on whatever platform you are using the most. Followers is not the only deciding factor. You are more likely to get physical ARCs if you have strong engagement on your platform. Some people have asked for how many followers they need, but I can’t tell you that. I would think anything over 1,000 would be a great start. I settled on 3,500 as I thought it would increase my chances more.
What is your experience with ARCs?