*ARCS - TO SEND OR NOT TO SEND*
CAROL GORDON EKSTER asks: I wondered what your opinion is on how many books to send out yourself (as opposed to your publisher) to reviewers or people who might spread the word about your book. Each book costs the author plus the mailing, and I'm confused about how much promotion to do. Any insight you can give would be appreciated.
Thanks, Carol Gordon Ekster
Where Am I Sleeping Tonight?-A Story of Divorce
a children's book released by Boulden Publishing, fall, 2008
Angela says: Great question, Carol! First, try to find out from your publisher or publicist where ARCs are sent. Some will have standard outlets that always receive ARCs. As for your personal stack, you should only send to publications that you know want the book and will likely do a review. Don't expect every one to follow through. It simply is not feasible. Don't spend a ton of money send ARCs via FedEx, USPS overnight delivery, UPS or DHL. Send it media mail - unless specifically requested by the publication.
There is no guarantee faster delivery will get you a quick review turnaround. To save time and money, ask reviewers if they will accept a PDF ARC via email. Some will, some won't. Personally, I get a better reading experience from a hardcopy, but I do make exceptions - particularly for self-published/POD authors. You may consider using password protection for the PDF, and sending that information in a separate email. If you don't have the full Adobe program to covert Word to PDF, visit Adobe's Web site, where you can do that for a nominal fee.
JESSICA JAMES asks: I am getting ready to plan a blog tour and have a couple of bloggers I would like to contact. What is the proper etiquette for contacting them, and what should I offer them in return for their time and energy in hosting me?
Author of the award-winning Civil War novel,
Shades of Gray
Angela says : Jessica -Congratulations for your entry into the virtual realm! You will find most bloggers don't stand on ceremony - but that doesn't mean you should send less-than-stellar email queries.
At Pop Syndicate, I immediately delete all queries with rampant misspellings, poor punctuation and incoherent thoughts. I don't expect someone to be formal; just professional. If they don't care enough to send a well-written, but brief, MySpace message, chances are they won't follow through on their tours.
Keep your queries short and to the point. Use the host's name, if available. Tell them why your novel is a good fit for their blog and ask them to consider hosting you. Include your email, address, phone and Web site in the signature line. Do not send attachments of your book cover or excerpts until they are requested.
In return, tell the bloggers you will promote their site and your tour date to your fans on social networks, in newsletters, forums, listservs, groups and any other online venue you belong to. Some may ask you to do a permanent link to share on their site - I'll post your site if you post mine.
Consider these requests, but do not feel obligated. If you do several tours, your list will become too long and difficult to navigate, and will clutter your page.
Read more about planning virtual tours here.
Angela Wilson is an author, freelance author publicist and professional blogger and podcaster. She requests ARCs and manages the book blog for Pop Syndicate, where she hosts authors on virtual book tours. If you have a question about promotions, visit www.askangelawilson.com, or email her directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Your question may be used on that site and/or here.
Find Angela Wilson at :http://www.linkedin.com/in/angelawilson