NetGalley and Edelweiss are amazing tools for bloggers, authors, publishers, librarians, you name it. I love NetGalley especially (can’t seem to get any traction on Edelweiss, I’ve only been approved for two books in two years; any tips on this?), and I totally and completely value and respect the books I get approved for.
But sometimes, I get a little crazy and request books I really have no intention of reading.
Of course, when I press the request button, I’m totally on board with reading and reviewing whatever book it is RIGHT AWAY. But then it sits on my kindle for a few weeks, and I request other books I’m more interested in, or I have a particularly fruitful trip to the library, and voila, newest requests forgotten. Fortunately, I’m getting so much better about this. I’m really trying to only request books that I recognize or are sequels to books I’ve already read, so that the chance that I will actually read and review it in a timely manner is higher. So while my requesting is getting under control, that didn’t change the fact that I had a shelf full of books I wasn’t the least bit interested in reading from when I first started blogging. Over two years ago.
See, when you’re a baby book blogger, you have this mindset that you have to read and review EVERYTHING. You have to accept every Review Request that appears in your inbox (spoiler alert, YOU DON’T). And when you first set up that NetGalley account, you’re like FREE BOOKS I NEED ALL OF THEM. And maybe you do alright for a while, but then you start getting books from the Big 5, and books that you would buy in a heartbeat from B&N, sequels to awesome books that you love, ARC’s from Jennifer L. Armentrout, etc. And all those books you requested in the beginning just sort of fade away (but hey, they are definitely still taking up space on your to-read shelf, and bringing that Feedback Ratio WAY down).
So today, I wrote this nice, polite, apologetic paragraph to the publishers of a good portion of these forgotten books, about how I was so sorry that I hadn’t read such and such book, and that I didn’t have any immediate plans to read and review it. If I did end up getting to it, I will definitely forward my review and splash it across the internet. But right now, I just don’t have time to read it, and I want to be an honest blogger that publishers want to send their books to.
And now my feedback ratio is at 79% and I feel like I can actually read and review the books left on my shelf. I can get back to being a helpful part of the publishing process, rather than holding on to books I’m never going to read (but pretending that I’ll totally get to them). So, did I feel bad about letting these publishers and authors down? Of course. But now I can do my job better, and give them better results in the future.
Have any of you done a NetGalley Purge?