The Art of the ARC – How advanced reader copies can add buzz, publicity and reviews to your book before the official release
There is nothing better than the smell of a freshly cracked book spine – unless of course, that book is an advance reader copy (ARC). ARC’s are copies of a book that are given to certain people who are permitted to read it before its scheduled release date. They are typically given to bloggers, critics, and other online influencers to review and promote the work to a wider audience. For authors, sending out an ARC is a great way to gain buzz and publicity before the big release. Although this may open the door to potential negative criticism, this also gives authors the chance to make last-minute changes before releasing their book to the world. So how do you create an ARC for reviewers?
Making an ARC
An ARC does not need to be fancy, however, there are additional elements that need to be considered:
- Disclaimer – A complete cover is not necessary, but there should be a disclaimer stating that this copy of the book is an advance reader copy that is not for resale.
- Quick facts – Include a list that has information like: number of pages, price, release date, ISBN etc.
- Formatting – While this may not be your final copy of your book, you should still make sure it appears clean and professional. Reviewers may have several ARCs to review, and an aesthetically appealing file could boost your chances of getting read first.
When it comes to distribution, you can choose an electronic copy, such as a PDF, or a print copy. Digital distribution is inexpensive and easy to deliver, however, this also makes it easier to leak. Print is the traditional route, but it does take more effort and time to produce.