How to Request ARCs from Publishers, Tips to Succeed & Basic Etiquette – A Guide
How to Request ARCs from Publishers, Tips to Succeed & Basic Etiquette – A Guide
Hello friends! How are you all? So a while ago I tweeted some ‘How to request ARCs’ tips, and it got a great response. It seemed to have answered a lot of questions people have, but also showed me that people had many other questions too! So I thought it would be good to write a guide on how to do it.
I’ve been meaning to do a post on this for a long time, and I know I’m by no means the first to do a post like this, but I’d be remiss if I didn’t. So here it goes!
Before I get into the how, let’s cover the what. Here’s my simple tweet on what ARCs are, and I’ll elaborate.
What are ARCS?
✶ Advanced Reader Copies
✶ also known as galleys or proofs
✶ uncorrected copies of books sent out for review purposes
✶ they come in electronic & physical forms
✶ you can request eARCs on sites like @Netgally or Edelweiss
— Jenn ✨ ⋆ (@JennieLy) March 28, 2019
What are ARCs and Why Does Everyone Want Them?
ARCs are Advance Reader Copies. They’re sometimes known as Galleys or Proofs. They are usually uncorrected copies and even sometimes manuscripts. This is why they ask you not to quote them as they can have content that differs from the final published version. Usually the changes are minor but sometimes not.
Publishers send these out to reviewers, booksellers, other authors – basically people prominently placed to spread the word about a book. Make no mistake – they are marketing materials. They don’t send them out to be nice, they do it to create a buzz for a book. Sometimes they even send out final copies for review. These are different to ARCs, being that they are the exact same as the finished book you’ll see in stores.
Some publishers send out eARCs. These are usually protected PDFs and can be read on your kindle. You can also use sites like Netgalley and Edelweiss. eARCs are listed on these sites where you can request them. I’ll go into more detail about this below.
How to Request ARCs
Here’s the tweet of basic tips that I did in March. I’ll be going into more details on each of these tips.
How to request ARCS
✶ find the relevant person's email
✶ compile your blog & social stats (avg. monthly views, followers, engagement)
✶ any relevant reviews they might like
✶ add your address to the end
✶ send it all in an email & say why you want the book
✶ you can do it!
— Jenn ✨ ⋆ (@JennieLy) March 25, 2019
A lot of people were asking whether they should bother to send requests, either because they were new or because they felt their stats were low.
Hear me when I say, what’s the harm in asking?
Yes, they obviously prefer people with good stats etc but that shouldn’t put you off. When I first started requesting was in August in 2017. I had 43 blog followers and about 1k Twitter followers? Was I always successful? HELL NO. I also didn’t include my stats or anything as I had no idea what I was doing.
My first contact in the publishing industry was actually Jamie who was working for Quirk Books, that was the first ‘official’ book I was sent.
This is what I sent along with a very basic email when I had 120 followers.
This is another example email, again not a brilliant one.
I spoke to the person who manages the twitter account of ******* and they said I should email my improved stats to you:
I’ve also got my goodreads up to 255.
My engagement on my blog has increased, my latest book review receiving 23 likes and 9 comments.
I would really love to be on your blogger list.
This got me added to the list, and was a really rubbish email! What I’m saying is – there really is no harm in asking. You never know.
But I will say, before requesting arcs review your own books. I know it feels daunting when you see people reviewing all these upcoming books or newly released books, but publishers really appreciate a backlist book review. These books are just as good and still need a push. What I’m saying is, you don’t need to spend money to get new books to review. You can even use the library!
It also will get you on the publisher’s radar, and have examples of your work that you can send them when you request. You can even send these backlist reviews to the publishers if you want, no harm in that either.
Finding the relevant person’s email to contact about ARCs
Okay so people found this quite a broad tip. I can’t do all the legwork for you but I will give you some pointers. First, I won’t share emails. I don’t know if there are any ‘rules’ against this, but I don’t want to risk it.
Use Google. It is your friend. Try searching things like ‘[publisher] contact information’ adding the words blogger, press, PR, review request etc in there. A lot of people do list these emails in their blogs too so check that out.
Here are some examples of the pages that you need to be looking for:
Use Twitter and Instagram
Google is your friend, Twitter and Instagram are your BEST FRIENDS. I mainly use Twitter myself but I know that Instagram offers the same resources.
See who people thank on twitter when they get sent books and follow them or even reach out to them.
How can you actively look for these without waiting for them to appear organically?
- Use the twitter search function – It’s like google but for Twitter! You could try and search a blogger’s username and the word ‘thanks’ and see if they’ve tweeted any thanks for the books posts.
- #BookPost/#BookMail hashtags. People often tag their thank tweets with these hashtags. Check them out.
These contacts usually tweet when they have books up for review, and you’ll see a lot of people asking for them. Go ahead, ask. Be super enthusiastic. NO HARM IN TRYING.
People also share the pictures on Instagram and usually tag the publicists, so check them out there.
Two amazing publicists that you should try to get onto the lists of(if you don’t know what lists are I will cover that down below)
Also, there’s no harm in messaging the publisher directly. They’re generally quite good at getting back to you, though don’t be disheartened if they don’t.
What to put in your Review Requests
I know this is the bit that people find daunting. Honestly, it doesn’t have to be!
Here’s a basic template and is kind of what I do:
(You should definitely change this up and not copy it word for word!)
I’m hoping you can help me. I would love to review [book title here]. [Other book by author] was my favourite book of 2017 and I’ve linked below my review of it and I’ve also featured the book on my Instagram feed a few times.
[link to relevant review or posts here]
My stats are:
Twitter: [username, followers, engagement]
Instagram: [username, followers, engagement]
Blog: [URL, followers, Average Monthly Views, Average likes/comments per post]
Goodreads : [username and followers]
I can’t describe how much I love this book so it would honestly mean the world to me if I could receive a review copy of the next one.
If you do think you’d like to send me one, my address is
If you’re not the right person to contact, would you mind pointing me in the right direction? I was also wondering if you had a blogger list I could be added to?
Thanks for considering!
All the best,
[Name, links to blog, social etc]
There you have it. If you think some of your stats I’ve listed are a bit low, you can always not include them. Tailor it to suit you!
If you haven’t got a specific book in mind, you can always just ask to be added to their list instead.
And yes, include your address. No, it doesn’t seem pushy or forward, they genuinely really appreciate it. Check out the tweet below where Ellen says just that. So go for it!
This! It's so much easier to add your address to the initial message so I can get a book out there and then. Back and forth emails take too much time! Also include blog stats/links if we haven't worked together before 📚
— Ellen (@eggnoggy91) March 25, 2019
What to put in your Netgalley Bio
This is what I have in my bio – and it seems to work for me!
I write about books on my Twitter account which has [followers here] currently.
I post reviews on my blog which has over [Followers] and gets an [average unique views] per month. I also share to Goodreads where I have [number of friends/followers]. These reviews post automatically to my Bloglovin, Twitter and Facebook.
My bookstagram is .
Any other relevant info here.
What are Blogger Lists?
Blogger lists are just that, lists of bloggers that publishers/publicists send out emails to when they have books up for review. They also may send unsolicited copies to those on their lists too (but don’t be disheartened if this doesn’t happen).
Book Blogger Etiquette
These aren’t hard and fast rules and are mainly my opinion, but honestly I advise you to stick to this.
- Don’t put a book you’ve just been sent straight up for trade. Honestly, don’t. It’s not cool, it frustrates other bloggers and also will annoy the publishers who are sending you the books.
- Don’t whine when you don’t get sent a book, or complain that you ‘never get sent books’. I can’t tell you how many people have messaged me to say they’ve never been sent an ARC, and how do they get on lists, and when I ask them if they’ve ever contacted a publisher they say no. This doesn’t just happen to people. You have to make an effort, and whining about it isn’t endearing you to anyone.
- Don’t tag authors in negative reviews. JUST DON’T.
- Send your reviews to the publishers after writing them. I’ll admit, I ALWAYS FORGET TO DO THIS.
- Crosspost your reviews to other platforms like Amazon, Goodreads etc. This is super important!
- DON’T SELL ARCS. And definitely don’t buy them either!
- Don’t request ARCs just because they’re hyped up if you’re not interested in that book. This is a hard one. When you first start to get sent arcs etc you end up getting super excited and requesting them all. Try not to do this, you’ll regret it once the pressure gets to you!
Thank you for reading and I hope you found it useful! I’ve had people contact me since the tweets to tell me that they got arcs they requested so please do give it a try. Remember, DON’T BE SCARED.
Have you requested arcs before?
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