Book Blogger ARC Overload, Events, & Giveaway

January 22, 2015 blogging, giveaway, Reading 15

Bookshelf may 14


This is part of one book shelf in my house.  I was too embarrassed to take a full view of the top of that shelf, it’s loaded with @ 50 books stacked up, unread.  I’ve lost my mind.

Yesterday I read this blog post from Ashley at  Well written and hitting the nail on the head.  How much of an obligation do book bloggers have? Read the post, comment or chime in here because I’ve got a problem folks!

I begin with plans of reading less arcs and more from my shelves.  I received blogger letters from several publishers each month, offering a plethora of new books in paper arc or e galley form.  I try to be honest with what I want to read, what I believe I can read and will read.  The problem lies with the next step.  I read reviews, and peruse Edelweiss and Net Galley.  I’m pre-approved with several publishers on these sites.  I have no problem requesting e galleys or paper arcs if something jumps out at me as a book I’ve got to read.  Then there are the book events, where I may purchase a new book, or a book from an authors back list or something else that is new, shiny and pretty.  This folks is how I accumulated 22 new books for January publication. YES!! 22!!  Six of those were unsolicited or gifts.  Three were e galleys, two I requested one I had pre approval for.  Those I’ve read.  So those other 13 books…all accepted many months prior to January with intentions of reading.  Now sure I can read them next month, I only have ten books that publish next month I’ve planned to read.  This is called the back up problem.  Where do you stand on this issue? Does it happen to you? Do you receive more unsolicited books than requested?  Do e galleys have less urgent feeling because they aren’t as costly to produce?

For what it’s worth, I agree with Ashley, if I request an arc, I’m going to attempt to read it and give an honest review.  If it’s not for me, I don’t feel bad, I follow up with publisher/publicist or author and I move on.  Should I be dong more book spotlights? Sharing books I hope to read, giving a short summary and in that way contributing something to the marketing plan a publisher has for said book?  I have to admit, it feels better talking about this. Jen Hartling  of The Relentless Reader suggested a support group, “um Hi, I’m Anita, and I have a book problem”.  I just noticed her post today is about giving away ARCs….timing is everything folks.

So I attended a  book event last Friday. Deborah Johnson, author of The Secret of Magic spoke at Vero Beach Book Center.  The event was nicely attended, the audience had good questions and recollections of their own growing up in a changing racial environment.  I was able to have lunch with Deborah and Cynthia, the publicity person from VBBC, she’s also a very good friend.  We chatted books, grandchildren, traveling, raising our kids, food, wine and much more.  It was lovely.

I had Deborah sign a paperback copy of The Secret of Magic and I’m giving it away.  Please fill out the form for a chance to win. Open until 10pm EST Monday January 26, 2015. Winner will be chosen using Open to US residents only, all costs are my own.

15 Responses to “Book Blogger ARC Overload, Events, & Giveaway”

  1. BermudaOnion

    I don’t have that problem so I can’t relate at all. Ha ha ha. I crack myself up. I ALWAYS think I’ll have more time to read than I actually do so my shelves overflow as well. My problem with egalleys is I forget I have them. I’m going to make more of an effort with them this year – as a matter of fact I’m reading one right now. Thanks for feeding out addiction and hosting the giveaway!

  2. Jennifer @ The Relentless Reader

    Does it happen to me? YES. Where do I stand on the issue? I stand on a pile of books that I’ve meant to read. Ha ha 😉

    Seriously though, there’s no way to keep up with the latest and greatest. We all have the best of intentions and then real life says “hello, remember me??”

    I decided to stop the self-imposed pressure this year. It’s not easy. I have to say no more often and be realistic about my time and energy. It’s not easy…did I say that already? 😉

  3. Andi Miller (@estellasrevenge)

    I threw my hands up many years ago, but you already know that. lol I used to receive scads of unsolicited books, and I used to request a lot, too. But somehow, that part where I actually needed to review them, made them much less fun to read. I hope you don’t run into THAT problem!

    • Anita

      I have felt that way a few times, more when I formerly signed up for book tours, which I no longer do(um I one in February). I’m honest if a book doesn’t work, but most especially when I go out of my way to request a book I feel I should be reading/reviewing. The pressure is more self imposed.

  4. Ashley

    Here’s something that works really well for me:

    I only request an ARC or buy a book if I’m going to read it NOW. Then as soon as I get it, I read it. Then I move on and request or buy another one. That way I’m only dealing with one book at a time.

    It’s working really well for me. 🙂

    • Anita

      Thanks Ashley, I think that’s a good alternative. I can think of a book that releases next month that I want to read, wasn’t given access to and want to buy, but when will I read it. Best to wait until I have time. The book won’t go away. Why do I feel I have to own all the books? UGH.

  5. Catherine

    Oh boy, Anita, do I know what you’re talking about. I’m not as established as you are so I don’t have pre-approval but I’ve been around long enough that some of the publishers send me unsolicited ARCs. Generally, I’m all right with that- if they know me and my reading, but I really dislike the ones who send a book that is releasing the next day. Excuse me, but I have a schedule like they do so it’s rude.

    Somehow I’ve ended up with the same overload you have- Jan, Feb, and Mar each have over 15 books sitting on my shelves. Quite honestly, I’m going to be brutal. If it’s unsolicited, I’ll start it but will DNF quickly if it’s not working. If I asked for it I’ll give it more time.

  6. Stacie (@sincerelystacie)

    I have one shelf for ARC/Review books. Well, that shelf is 2 rows deep and stacks are facing all different ways. *sigh* For me, life happens and I fully intend to review them and then I end up subbing for 2 weeks straight or a family thing comes up and I get behind on a couple review dates and then I still have other ones looming and etc etc. I am doing much better so far this month and only committing to what I totally know I can do no matter what crisis occurs. I am only accepting books that I can’t stand to NOT read. I am busy enough now that I am not accepting the constant requests in my email from authors through amazon or whatever other means they found me. I also write a post each month that features all the books that came my way in that previous month so even if I don’t get them reviewed right away, they are being featured and promoted in that way. There is no perfect answer, but know your book shelf is not the only one that is sagging…..

  7. River City Reading

    Just kind of extending what Ashley suggested, I’ve noticed that I tend to read my library books right away because I know they need to be returned by a specific time. Maybe instead of requesting a book from NetGalley/Edelweiss, you could add yourself to the hold list at the library. Then when it comes in, if you really want to read it you can, if not…no loss.

  8. Literate Housewife

    This is something I’ve struggled with for at least four of my eight years blogging. This past fall I almost closed down my blog because of it. Instead, because I do love talking about books, I’ve stopped accepting review copies completely (except audiobooks, but these are few and far between anyway). I haven’t gone on NetGalley, I haven’t gone on Edelweiss, and I haven’t read a single edition of Shelf Awareness since sometime in November. I’ve updated my review policy to indicate that I no longer accept pitches, so I delete all pitch emails unread, including publisher lists. I avoid those temptations entirely. It felt weird at first, but I cannot tell you how freeing it is to be able to read my way through Harry Potter without feeling an ounce of guilt. I didn’t start blogging to read new releases, yet that is what my entire reading life began revolving around. It feels good to step away from that. I also find myself enjoying more conversations with people because they’ve actually read what I’ve read.

    I’ll read a new release that catches my fancy and I think I’ll follow Shannon’s advice and check them out from the library. It feels good to be free, but it took me four years to get here. I wish you the best of luck. I’ve been in your shoes and I support you in whatever you decide to do.

  9. Becca Lostinbooks

    Me? Have a problem? I have no idea what you’re implying. Ahem.

    Yeah, yeah, okay I have a TOTAL problem. I feel guilty about it, too. Total blogger guilt. But I do the best I can and I put in my policy – dude, I am forever late with reviews. That way, no one can get mad. 🙂

  10. whatsheread

    Hahahahahahahahahahahaha! I am not laughing AT you, sweetie! I am laughing at myself. You received 22 books in January? I am embarrassed to say that I received more than that. My current TBR list tops out at over 700 books. These aren’t just books I want to read. That is over 700 books for which I have electronic or print copies in my house. I have more e-galleys to read in January, February and March than there are days in the month. Do I let it stress me out? Not anymore. I’ll get to them all eventually, right?

    Hello, my name is Michelle, and I have a major book collecting problem.

  11. Kim (Sophisticated Dorkiness)

    I don’t really worry about this anymore. I try to be judicious in what I request, but if I ask for more than I can read or end up not interested in a book after it arrives, I don’t worry. If publishers aren’t happy with the ROI in sending books to me, they can always stop — I’ll still have plenty of things to read 🙂

  12. Trish

    When I started to realize that I didn’t really care to read what I was receiving (mostly requested on Shelf Awareness), I stopped opening the emails and stopped requesting. Yes, sometimes I get a bit envious of all the new books that other bloggers are getting, but it’s not worth the pressure or the stress. So I let it go! And I still have some of those ARCs, unread on my shelf, from YEARS ago. I only read 3-4 books in a month, so 22 books is literally half my year. I started feeling like I was stealing time from other parts of my life in order to squeeze in more reading (this was before I had Elle and had more time). So, just let it go! Maybe stop browsing egalleys? It’s hard at first, especially with everyone else reading ALL the new books, but it’s not worth losing reading time over worrying. 😉

    I didn’t read Ashley’s post, but I don’t think that you have any obligation for the books you have received. Maybe start noting that you will accept the book for consideration? And maybe a spotlight will help provide a happy medium between saying nothing about the book and writing a full blown post?

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