Ready to take the next step in your book blogging or booktube journey? Want to know how to get book ARCs to review? It may be surprisingly easier than you would expect!
How to Get Book ARCs
We know that ARCs are great, but how do you start getting them? Figuring this out is the step on your journey. And there are actually many different ways to get ARCs from publishers. These are some of the best ways you can start getting ARCs to review.
What is a Book ARC?
First, if you don’t know we need to answer the question “what is a book ARC?” Simply put, ARC stands for Advanced Reader Copy.
These copies are typically NOT the finished copies of the books. They tend to be very close to done, but still may be in final edits and revisions. So it is likely you will see some typos or a few small things that can be changed prior to the release of the book.
ARCs are sent out to book reviewers before the book releases in order to drum up hype for the launch. Reviewers will read and review these books, giving them a presence in the online bookish world.
Sometimes these ARCs are physical copies, and others are eBook copies. Either way, ARCs are sent to readers in advance of a book’s release in order to get more reviews and sell more finished copies.
Get eARCs from NetGalley
So now that you know exactly what an ARC is, we can talk about how you can start getting them. The first way that most book reviewers start getting ARCs is through a website called NetGalley.
NetGalley is a site where publishers submit eARCs that are available for review. Users will request these books. And when you are accepted for a copy, it will be sent to you in a digital format. While there are a few options, the most popular one seems to be the Kindle version of the books.
On NetGalley, users have ratios. This is made up of the number of books they have reviewed and the number of books they currently have out for review. You will want to keep your percentage as high as possible. That means it is best to read and review the books as soon as you can.
Of course, you start out with no percentage, so what do you do to get it up? Well, NetGalley has some books that are marked as “read now”. This means you don’t need to request them. All you have to do is download and read it. This is a great way to start getting your numbers up so you can request more of your desired titles.
I know, most readers seem to really want physical ARCs, but eARCs are still great to have. Not only are they easier to come by, they also don’t take up room on your shelves, and you won’t feel as bad if you end up not loving the ARC you received.
How to Request and Get Physical Book ARCs
So what if you want physical ARCs? Well, you can start requesting them right from the publishers! Most large publishing houses offer physical arcs upon request. And most of them have forms on their websites where you can fill out your information and see if you get accepted.
These programs don’t accept everyone since they get so many requests every single day. But don’t feel discouraged if you don’t get accepted, just come back and try again later. Also, don’t feel like you need to have a massive online following either. I personally started getting physical ARCs from publishers and have a relatively small book blog and booktube channel. Size doesn’t really matter, especially in this niche. The real thing that matters is having an engaged audience that lines up with who publishers think are most likely to read a particular book.
Keep in mind, that though publishers are more likely to send physical ARCs, they do also send eARCs, usually through NetGalley. So make sure you have that NetGalley account.
Where to Request ARCs from Publishers
Ready to start requesting ARCs? Here is a list of all the publisher programs you can apply to!
- RandomHouse Influencer Program
- Penguin Books Influencer Program
- MacMillian Influencer Program
- Harper Influencer Program
- Fierce Reads Influencer Program
- Celadon Influencer Program
- Flat Iron
- Libro.fm Audiobook Influencer
Of course, there are more out there if you look. But these book influencer programs are a great place to start.
Emailing Publishers Directly
Another thing you can do is to email the publishers directly to request a specific book you want to review. This is going to take much more effort on your part but can be the start of a business relationship with you and that publisher.
I highly recommend really searching for the correct press or media email to contact. This will NOT be the general contact email. If you email your ARC request to those, then you will likely get lost in the shuffle.
Spend time googling things like “tor influencer program” or “Orbit ARC requests” in order to nail down exactly who you need to talk to. When you do send that email, make sure you are kind and professional. Let them know why you want this particular ARC and how THEY can benefit from sending it to you.
Yes, how THEY can benefit. This is a business transaction after all and they aren’t sending you books because you are friends. let them know that your audience is highly engaged and the majority of them read YA fantasy ( or whatever it is you are requesting). They need to see the benefit of working with you and that you are professional.
Emailing Authors Directly
I have seen a few places say to email authors directly for ARCS. And I completely disagree with this one ( for the most part).
Authors who are traditionally published likely have very little to NO control over who gets an ARC and who doesn’t. I have learned this from doing author interviews, so I promise you aren’t going to get them to send you books.
Now, the only time this may be okay is if it is a self-published author. Though, tread lightly. These authors may put out a call that they are looking for ARC readers, in that case totally throw your name in the ring. But honestly, I wouldn’t just email self-published authors out of the blue and ask for a book. With as much time and money as they put into their career, It honestly would be better if you just purchased a finished copy to support them.
There are many ways to start getting ARCs to review. These are just a few, but a great way to get started on your journey. Have any tips for getting ARCS? Leave them in the comments to help your fellow book reviewers!