Advanced Readers Copy – Then & Now

Book bloggers who interact with authors and hang around Netgalley will know what an ARC is. For the rest of the world who´s always asked themselves what the abbreviation means… I´m here to help!

You´re welcome.

 

arc banner

 

And now you´re thinking: “WOW! Those book bloggers get free books from publishers / authors directly? That´s awesome!”

You´re right. It is AWESOME.

Us book blog folks can´t really complain when it comes to receiving books before they hit the bookshelves.

But receiving ARCs comes with a price. It´s not just about getting free, yet to be published, books.

 

Granted. The price we pay isn´t necessarily high. But it´s tiresome and even taxing over time. But sometimes reading those ARCs can be rewarding.

I think it´s fair to add that there is a difference between traditional published and self published ARCs. And then there´s Netgalley, which is a whole different level of giving out unpublished free copies to readers.

Traditional published advanced copies are usually reserved for journalists, celebrities, major blogs. Of course, any every-day-book-blogger can receive a traditional published ARC, as well. It just involves a little more work and luck.

Self published ARCs are much easier to get our hands on. We either wait for an open opportunity to add ourselves to a list or an author may ask us directly if we´re interested in reading an ARC.

Or, we hop over to Netgalley and include ourselves to a list there and then hope for the best.

Either way – ARCs come with a set of rules. These rules may vary but they core of rules is always the same.

  1. Do not forward the book to a third party
  2. Must leave a review ( either before or after or directly on publication date )
  3. Include publisher / authors name
  4. Meet the deadline
  5. Don´t publish a review with less than a 3 star rating. ( not a mandatory rule, but it still pops up once in a while )

 

So, basically you get to read for free if you promise not to let anyone else read the unpublished book and if you include the publisher / author in your review by thanking them for letting you read the free copy then everyone´s happy.

 

Many book bloggers will mention that the book they´ve read was an ARC in their reviews. Sometimes it´s even asked of us book bloggers to add a small recognition line in our reviews. That might look something like this:

 

I received an Avanced Readers Copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review”

 

A simple line, right? That can always be easily worked into a review before it´s published. That line might raise some questions to normal reader who´s only looking for his/her next read, though.

 

No matter how a book blogger receives an ARC the rules stay the same.

 

Don´t do shit you promised not to do! Do shit you promised you´d do!

 

 

The price we pay is truly small compared to what we´d normally spend after the ARC hits the bookshelves.

Are Advanced Readers Copies worth it?

I´d say yes and no. Yes, because it´s a fabulous way to get our hands on new books and ARCs are kind to our wallets.

No, because book bloggers tend to agree to read more ARCs than they´re able to fit into their schedule

.
Let´s do simple math that displays what I´m talking about:

2 ARCs a week = 8 ARCs a month = better have a calendar or else you´re screwed.

 

 

And then there´s that issue when you want to DNF the ARC. You have to contact the publisher or author and give details as to why you can´t continue to read.

Meeting a deadline is also sometimes exhausting.

Life is often not nice to us book bloggers. Sometimes we have to hop back to reality and can´t meet a deadline. You have to contact the publisher or author and explain why.

 

So, are ARCs truly worth it?

Sort of. Kind of. Depends on what type of person / book blogger you are.

 

ARCs Then & Now

Nowadays, 98% of all ARCs come in e-book format. Why? Because it´s much easier and quicker. There´s no hassle with printed ARCs and no shipping issues. ARCs flow from one device to another within seconds or a few hours. ARCs these days look like this:

 

arc 2
Taken from my unloved Kindle

 

Or, dare I share this little gem from Netgalley:

 

arc 3
Another shot from my unloved Kindle

 

A few years back, though, there were still publishers and authors who made a point of giving out printed advanced copies to readers.

 

arc
ARC taken from my personal bookshelf.

 

Weird, right? Hardly imaginable in the day of modern technology yet they existed. Printed ARCs were a thing and I miss them dearly.

 

 

These days, authors love to give out e-book arcs because they´re efficient. Low cost and no wasted effort.

And many authors have misunderstood the meaning of an ARC. The roots of ARCs.

What was once an uncorrected proof read turned into a nearly finished – finished project ready to hit sales.

Let´s do a quick listing of things that made ARCs different from the past and now.

ARCs Back Then

  • Uncorrected proof reads
  • No final cover image
  • Story wasn´t final
  • Paperback format came as a naked product

 

Readers gave feedback on the proof read and THEN the whole book was combed through again before it would be published, 3 – 6 months later with a cover image.

ARCS NOW

  • handed out in exchange for an honest review
  • often final product
  • often comes with a finished cover image

 

In short: readers receive a copy for review purposes and then the book gets published within 1-3 months ( or less ).
So, the idea of an ARC has changed over the years. And then there´s the time issue. We live in a fast living world. If authors / publishers don´t get said book out yesterday then the genre might go out of style tomorrow.

There´s hardly any time to send out a paperback ARC across oceans to the opposite side of the world when the same thing can be sent via technology within a blink of an eye.

Makes sense, right?

It still doesn´t change the fact that I don´t like ARCs, no matter what form they come in.

They´re added work. The story has to sound freaking special before I accept an advanced copy.

Do you like to read Advanced Readers Copies? How often do you accept ARCs?

Let me hear your thoughts! I´m dying to discuss this topic with you.

 

Hope you all have a lovely day!

Much Love,

Morgana ❤ ❤

 

 

 

 

Instagram – Meet The New Book Box

1 year and 4 months.

Wow. That´s how long my Book Box on Instagram lasted. Pretty inpressive, if you ask me. I thought I´d give up much quicker. But I set a goal and I even reached beyond that goal. Now…

It´s time, though, to slowly send the old book box into retirement and let the new generation take over.

But before I introduce you to the new addition let´s take a moment to appreciate the old one.

book box

Old and beaten but still wonderful. When I started out taking pics with this box it still had 4 removable legs.

Now, the box has one leg missing ( it´s somewhere in the field in the next village ) and 2 legs broke off. The box now has one remaining leg.

I will miss using this box. Not so much the fact that it´s a real pain in the ass to carry it around ( because, it truly was a tad bulky and didn´t fit into any backpack or bag ). No. I´ll miss using this for creativity purposes.

The box will stay a part of my deco in the house.

As for the new kid on the block…

It´s much smaller. Much handier. It fits in all my bags and doesn´t take up half the space in my car trunk.

The box itself is smaller than a large paperback book. But don´t worry. I wasn´t planning on stuffing a book inside the box anyways.

Morgana´s Book Box on Instagram is getting a tiny make over with this little cute baby.

Tadaaaaa!!

book box 2

Isn´t it cute?

The little inscript on the lower left corner? IT WAS ALREADY THERE! * faint *

As if some higher power wanted me to put the first book box out of it´s misery. And besides, a million ideas flooded my brain when my eyes caught this little gem. A win / win for me 2x over.

Normally, I dislike replacing stuff with new things ( because if it´s not broke, there´s no need for a replacement). In this case, though… It was kind of necessary.

 

So, there ya have it. Be sure to stay tuned for more, new Instagram features  with and without the new book box.

If you haven´t already then just click here and say hi.

I´d love to chat.

Much love,

Morgana ❤

Mug Monday & Book Blog Goals

Mug

GreenGate: Latte cup, star, warm grey

Book Topic

Book blogger goals.

 

I remember I didn´t have any goals when I started to blog… 8 years ago.

It´s extremely hard for me to wrap my head around the fact that I´ve been book blogging for so long. Do you guys know what this really means? That I´ve been staring at my computer screen for close to a decade.

 

 

I´m not going to start handing out advice on how to blog because if we´re all honest here… book blogging is something unique. It´s personal. Everyone has different ideas on how to book blog.

Besides, I suck at giving any type of advice. Shall I ever share my wisdom with you then do yourselves a favor and ignore it. There´s a huge possibility that my advice might get someone into trouble. And I´m not ready to have fingers pointed at me nor am I up for having people in my garden ready to attack me with pitchforks.

 

 

I might not have had book blogging goals from the get – go but I did develop some goals after a few weeks.

 

Keep in mind: In 2010, there wasn´t as many book blogs as there are today. Back then, it was easier not to feel the pressure some book bloggers are feeling these days. Social media was much more fun to handle and Goodreads wasn´t a vicious playground. And not many authors had annoying PAs who dealt with everything. It was easier to get in touch with authors, self published AND traditional published, alike.

There were a few huge book blogs I followed and I even picked one of those blogs to be a “role model” for me ( which turned out to be a bad idea. Lol ).

 

Back to the goals…

 

I didn´t have many goals back in the beginning of my book blog career. There were less than a handful of things I wanted to achieve as a book blogger.

To help you understand the next part a little better I´m going to give you a little book blog background info from myself.

 

Morgana´s Book Blog Résumé

  • 2010 – 2015,  blogged @ the Divas Book Blog with my 2 besties
  • 2015 – 2016, left Divas Book Blog,  guest reviewed for other Book Blogs
  • 2016 –          , Solo Book Blogger under new name and new blog

 

Of course, there´s more to that résumé but that´s for another time. We´re concentrating on goals today. So, what exactly were my goals?

 

Note: I might have had goals but I never, not even in my wildest dreams, believed any of the 2 goals would ever be reached. I mean, I´m me. I don´t belong to the luckiest bunch in the world. Yet, I had hope ( even if those hopes were too far out of my reach ).

 

My first goal: Receiving a signed paperback copy from an author. I´m not talking about the signed copies we usually have to pay for these days. I´m talking about the books that have been given freely from the heart with a small personal note. A smaller goal but still not easy to achieve ( unless you go to a book signing event or pay for an author´s signature ).

My second goal: To have my name / blog name / tagline from one of my reviews on a book cover. To be fair, I had no idea how that was going to happen. All I knew was that I wanted one book with something from myself on it. This wasn´t a realistic goal of mine.

 

You know how you sometimes say that you could die a happy man / woman if something you´ve dreamt of ever happened?

That´s what I always said.

“If my name ever gets printed on a book then I´ll retire and die happy.” 

Well, I reached my first goal quicker than I thought I ever would.

 

signed books

 

 

That, in the pic above, means the world to me. My first bookish goal. Through hard work ( many hours networking, book blogging, spreading the word, etc ) I received my personalized signed paperbacks.

I couldn´t have been more happy.

Until this happened….

 

wp sleeve
Pic #1: Dangerous To Know & Love ( romance ). Pic #2: The Devil´s Eyes               ( paranormal romance ).

 

This was a faint – worthy moment for me. My words. On the backside of a paperback book. I truly thought my blogging goals couldn´t be topped.

I was wrong.

 

sleeve cover
The Frost of Springtime ( Historical romance )

 

The best moment of my book blogging career. I made it on a book cover. The front.

I´m not a crier but when that day… when the book arrived… I was bawling my eyes out.

 

 

Now that I´ve long reached my bookish goals… do I have anything else I´d like to achieve as a book blogger?

This may sound ungrateful but, no. I´m happy as I could ever be. As of now, I don´t have any book blogger goals. But who knows what the future might bring, right?

 

This post isn´t about parading my achievements and tooting my own horn. This post is for everyone who has a book blogger goal ( or any goal, for that matter ).

THIS TYPE OF ADVICE YOU CAN TAKE FROM ME.

No matter how big or small, how insignificant or meaningful your goals are… Never forget that you are able to achieve those goals.

 

If your goal is to become a successful blogger – you can do it!

If your goal is to be unique – be unique!

If you want to host a book signing event – no one is stopping you!

With a little love, sweat, energy and time… you can reach your goals.

 

Look at me… If I can get my name on a book cover then you certainly have the power to achieve whatever it is you have your mind set on.

 

Speaking of name… Don´t be confused if you´ve read Julia on the signed books in pic #1. I go by both, Morgana and Julia. ( first and middle name )

 

Dream small. Dream big. No matter what you do, make those dreams come true!

Do you have any blog goals? Have you reached them yet? Share your thoughts and secrets! I would love to discuss your goals with you.

Much love and warm hugs,

Morgana ❤

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mug Monday & Involuntary Blog Break

Book – Split by J.B. Salsbury

Mug – Ikea. Black.

Today´s Topic- Involuntary Blog Break Due To Life

 

Welcome to today´s Mug Monday feature!

I´ve got some good news and some bad news. I think I´ll start with the bad news and get that out of my way before gushing over the good news.

The Bad News

I´m forced to go on a blog break. It´s not my fault. I didn´t ask for this. But… I can´t see any other way than to let my laptop collect dust for a short period of time.

That means I won´t be responding to comments unless I can find a moment to sneak away from the event. Pre – scheduled posts will pop up but I won´t actually have time to get back with you wonderful bunch.

Why? Well, it´s because of the good news.

The Good News

My brother, Mason, is getting married this Saturday. Yes. I´ve just revealed another small tidbit from my personal life. I have a brother. One of 3. It´s the youngest who decided it was time to tie the knot.

mason
Mason- Brother and soon to be groom with me, the small evil-looking one on the right. 

The little turd who once ran around pretending to be a Power Ranger and  is finally settling down.

And guess what? I am the best man ( or, best sister) !

I admit- I thought he´d pick one of his tree hugging friends. When he called ( which he never does ) and announced the good news I was actually stoked and immediately agreed without thinking what my job would entail.

Turns out that my job as the best man has me being a part-time wedding planner and therapist for the groom to be.

And since last year he´s come up with new jobs for me to deal with as `best man`.

As of now I´m in charge of:

  • giving a speech ( I´ve got 4 more days to whip one up and 4 days to overcome my fear of speaking in front of a crowd )
  • organize a few games to play at the wedding ( again, I have to speak to more than 5 people. It´s going to be HORRIFIC )
  • talking to the DJ  ( I can deal with the DJ )
  • and entertaining family for a week at my house ( because my brother has confused my house with a hotel  ( It´s going to get really crowded in my house )

Besides dressing the husbutt, the girls and myself, going to the hairdressers and getting my nails done ( which I also never do because they always break off ) and catering the guests at my house I have absolutely no time to get some reading or blog stuff done.

My schedule is packed.

Have I mentioned that weddings can be stressful? I haven´t? Well, they are.

That is why I must bid you all a temporary farewell.

Should you notice me commenting on blog posts from others or replying to comments on my pre-  scheduled reviews then know that I´ve managed to find a bathroom far from anyone and locked myself in there.

If I don´t respond or give any other signal that I´m still alive…. don´t worry. I´ll be back on track my next week´s Mug Monday feature.

 

My deepest apologies for the luke warm Mug Monday  feature.

mug monday m

I have tin foil in my hair and the fumes from the hair color aren´t really allowing me to be overly creative today.

The ebook `Split` is supposed to be a romance but I haven´t spotted one yet. The mug is from Ikea and it´s black. Again, my deepest apologies for the bla feature. Blame my brother ( because that always works. LOL )

 

Okay. That´s it. I have 6 more minutes until I have to wash this stuff out of my hair and then I gotta get to that best man´s speech I´m dreading.

I hope you have a lovely day!

Share the book love!

Many hugs,

Morgana xoxo

 

 

 

Mug Monday & Special Thanks

Mug

A gift

Bookish Topic

Blog Appreciation

Happy Mug Monday!

Last week was a week filled with wonderful moments and gruelling challenges. It´s been a week filled with things I´ve learned.

I´ve learned that….

  • I´d rather throw another party for 7 year olds again than for 11 year olds.
  • All 7 year olds are deaf.
  • Sympathy crying is still a thing with 1st graders.
  • Noah ( a birthday guest from my 7-year-old daughter) likes to show his one-eyed snake.
  • My husband can scream like a girl in panic when Noah reaches for his one-eyed snake.
  • My husband can´t handle Noah declaring his love for our 7 year old daughter.
  • Too many helicopter parents in my garden are more stressful than 7 and 11 year olds.
  • I´m the only person who can bake a cake that´s burnt on the outside and raw on the inside… TWICE! ( I suck at baking)
  • Never gift my oldest daughter a book because she will abandon her party guests and hide for almost an hour to read. We found her in her bathroom. ( Nice move, Mirjam)

I survived 2 kids birthday parties. I survived Noah. I can´t speak for my husband, though. All in all… I call that a success.

That was the stressful part.

The wonderful part was when I hopped on to the computer Sunday evening and saw the little surprises left in my notification box on WordPress. Tucked between all the lovely comments and replies was this:

love post

This. I was totally flashed when I saw this. What a wonderful shout – out from another book blogger! I expected the fan – fiction mob wanting to kill me with their death threats but I didn´t expect anything this heartwarming.

Thank you, Debby  @alwaysbooking 

You´re a doll for taking your time to check out my blog / posts and for wanting to spread the word. These shout – outs don´t happen often so I am grateful for the support and love. ❤ ❤
People! Go and check out Debby´s blog. Her “About Me” is a da bomb!

It then occurred to me that Debby wasn´t the only one supporting me. Other blogs have been doing the same with their comments, retweets, likes and shares lately.

A big fat THANK YOU goes out to:

5171 Miles Book Blog 5171

For some time now, these 2 ladies have been supportive in more than one way. Ashley and Sabrina have wonderful minds and kind hearts and you can feel that kindness and lots of love on their blog. No matter what social media we bump into each other… we have fun. Do check out their AMAZING Instagram feed! ❤

 

Books, Vertigo & Tea books vertigo

Danielle is a power woman on so many levels. Not only does she write fabulous blog posts ( I love her style ), she also leaves so much positivity and encouragement in comments. ❤ Whatever you´re looking for- Danielle has it on her blog. She´s a tea and book enthusiast.  ❤ Go and show this woman some love because she deserves it all. ❤

 

Of All The Books In All The Libraries   

of allSuziey´s blog is what it´s supposed to be. A place for all her thoughts regarding books ( and maybe a non bookish topic ). AND I LOVE THAT about her blog. She´s a wonderful blogger with a sharp mind and great style. Suziey has been nothing but wonderful and supportive and for that I thank her dearly. Follow her! Pronto!

 

TheWebWeaverstheweb

Hands down – This blog is lit. Arachnid Weaver and Spinette Spyder have created something out of this world cool! Love their style. Love their posts. Love everything they put out there. If you´re looking for entertainment and humor then you need to follow this blog immediately. Check out their posts. I´ve sat a few nights crying from laughing so hard.

 

The Cozy Pagescozy pagres

I just recently discovered this lovely blog and can say that I´m sticking to it like glue now. Nina has a colorful collection of blog content and she´s just such a joy to chat with. I´m looking forward to see what else she has in store for me / everyone else! Now it´s your turn to give this woman some love.

 

As for all the other blogs who have been super supportive –  I haven´t forgotten you. My body and mind haven´t fully recovered from last week´s birthday escapade. I hope I´m forgiven…

Still, before I set off into the land of blissful snores I want to leave an even bigger THANK YOU to the people who have had my back and supported me.

Even the silent ninjas who appreciate from the dark corners of the book world… THANK YOU for… staring / stalking.

It´s time for the Mug Monday presentation.

Are y´all ready? I hope you are. Just don´t get your hopes up because my lack of creativity has suffered a bit ( let´s blame that on Noah a.k.a the One – Eyed – Snake hunter)

mug o

There you have it. The mug is gray and the book, `To Kill A Kingdom` by Alexandra Christo, was just the right book to read after my mentally challenging week. Review will be up this Thursday. ❤

But what I can do is leave my favorite quote from `To Kill A Kingdom`…

“Technically, I’m a murderer, but I like to think that’s one of my better qualities.”

Doesn´t that sound awesome? It does. Sirens, humans, mermaids and…. pirates!

Okay. That´s enough. I need to stop right here before I end up spoiling the whole story.

 

Book bloggers,

I love you. I appreciate you. I think we should marry soon.

 

Yours truly,

Morgana ❤ ❤