Earlier you would find booknerds with broken backs and an unending stack of their to-be-read books that they carry with them, which would ultimately result in their death. As if that wasn’t enough there is an added weight of ARCs that we run after like crazy and then promptly stash on our TBR piles.
Am I the only one who thinks that ARCs or Advanced Reading Copies are overrated?
Don’t start yelling or throwing tomatoes at me just yet! Let’s have a healthy discussion on ARCs and their worth.
So where did this trend of ARCs start from?
ARCs are usually up for requesting or sent to bloggers, reviewers and influencers since authors need pre-release reviews and publicity so that a hype can be created around their book and when it releases the initial sales will be high and they can get a general idea of whether their book is going to soar or drown.
And yes, this is important, I’m not denying that. It’s VERY important.
Bloggers and reviewers should request for ARCs and read as well review them but recently this has taken a different turn. Everyone has started to hoard these ARCs like a Sniffler hoards everything that shines. It doesn’t matter what genre it falls under, whether the blurb seems nice or whether it caters to their age-group or not- they just keep requesting ARCs. Don’t feel embarrassed to admit, everyone has been there.
Oh I’ve seen some hype around this book or author so let’s request the ARC!
Not being careful while requesting ARCs is one of the major reasons why you end up not finishing it, not really liking the genre and all together declaring the book as boring or poorly written. Don’t you see that this is just the opposite of what authors wanted? And just because you didn’t ensure by reading the summary, looking up the genre and age group that the book at least seemed to fit your interests. Great, now that poor book has a negative hype around it.
Not to mention that when people are collecting ARCs like crazy they end up having too many of them. Some of them may not be read well after their publishing date and what is the point of requesting an ARC when you’re not reading it before it’s available out in the world? Not only can you now simply buy the book but also you weren’t of any help to the lovely author who wrote it and lovingly sent it to you.
And that is if you even end up reading it. So many people end up never really getting back to all the ARCs they have and they just rust in their bookshelves or kindles. This means denying other readers the opportunity to read a wonderful story.
There is a whole new set of problems if we start talking about print ARCs. People are paying mad prices to get hold of ARCs, they’re taking the ‘I’ll sell me soul for that book’ phrase literally! I never get this concept of spending so much money when you could just wait for a while until the book comes out and buy it at a reasonable price with other people.
But no, having ARCs seems to grant people a high status and the more ARCs one has the higher their status, this is at least what I have seen many people to believe. Print ARCs seem to be the most in demand and somehow seems to grant the owners an exclusive priviledge.
I am so very against this policy of hoarding ARCs because not only are those books not being read but you’re denying other people the opportunity to read it.
When I first joined the bookish community this was a totally alien concept to me. Being a go-with-the-flow kind of person I decided to start requesting ARCs too. I got an insane amount of rejections from Netgalley which was pretty disheartening so I stopped requesting ARCs and threw myself into blog tours, which by the way are so much more fun! Most of them were for books that had already been published but I did do a couple tours for ARCs too and honestly, there was absolutely no difference in both kinds of tours. I got the same joy reading ARCs and other books.
And then suddenly my requests started getting accepted. I was absolutely delighted but reigned myself in because even then I was sure about one thing- I didn’t want to read just any genre for the sake of having ARCs. And then life got busy and I was soon struggling to read my backlist books, new releases and the ARCs too. The ARCs started getting sidelined simply because I no longer had an interest in them. The thrill tends to wear off once your request gets accepted, until and unless you are really invested into it, and on the rare occasion that I really wanted to read an ARC I never got the time.
And I feel absolutely horrible about that so I’ve simply stopped requesting ARCs. I am not going to ask for an ARC until I am a 100% positive that I will drop every other book to read it.
I guess what I am trying to say is that people should only request for ARCs they actually have an interest in reading and just stop hoarding them. You aren’t better than some other blogger just because you have an insane amount of ARCs. You don’t have to give in to the pressure and start requesting ARCs just because others are. You do you!