On ARC insecurity

I’m going to talk about something that might be slightly controversial in the book blogging community. But I have always made a point of being honest here about my blogging experience and my struggles and I want to keep on going.

Today, I got denied for digital ARCs again. I got denied plenty of times for digital ARCs, but still. Even if I get approved as well sometimes, well… Getting rejected HURTS.

In my three years of blogging, I received one physical ARC from a publisher, where other people got tons already. They haven’t been blogging for years, they are even international, at times. Yet they are LUCKY.

Let me make things clear, first and foremost: I am not here to blame these lucky bloggers. Am I jealous? A little bit, obviously, because I am human. Am I happy for them? Obviously, they got more chances than I do, I guess and it’s great for them if they get to read these books they are excited before their release and hype them up to the whole blogging community.

Let me make things clear on another point: I am NOT blogging for ARCs. I would have given up for so long if I were blogging for that.

I have something I want to call ARC insecurity.

Here is the thing. ARCs are not making my whole blogging experience. They are not what I’m blogging for, or why I am writing every single post, trying to grow my blog or / and want to come back to blogging every single time. But these little books, whether they are digital or physical, make me feel like I am actually good at what I do. When a publisher grants me a wish, it feels like they trust me to promote their books. It feels like my blog is successful enough to be given this opportunity. I feel grateful and happy and like my blog is worth it.

I know there have been tons of debate and you will be aware of it all, if you are on Twitter. I do not wish to get back into it all, the whole international bloggers issues, but… I have to say that, getting denied these opportunities because of geography hurts, as well. I am aware that sometimes we international bloggers can’t get ARCs, because of rights issues, shipping costs prices and so on. I don’t wish to get back into this. I DO wish that we could have more opportunities. I do wish we weren’t as invisible as we are right now. We work. HARD. I am working over 12 hours per week on my blog. And I am working full-time. It’s a hobby and I love it, and it doesn’t feel like work. But getting approved to promote something I love makes me feel successful. Like I am doing something RIGHT. I don’t know. Maybe I am doing something wrong. Maybe I’m just not worthy enough.

I know I am lucky to be able to buy books, since I am working, even if I am not able to buy them at all times. I don’t have the opportunity of a library or bookshops where I can get new releases. I don’t buy hardcovers (except if it’s John Green….), which means I wait a whole lot of time to buy and read some books I am impatient to get to. In that way, being able to get ARCs are an amazing opportunity, one that allows me to shout out about the books I want, the books I am 99,9% sure I will love.

I feel like I am not worth it.

ARCs are not the heart of the blogging community. I know that. But when, all over your twitter timeline and on blogs, you are seeing people getting and reviewing these books that only release in 2018, you can’t help it but get a little bit envious. It’s not about the “getting books for free” thing. It’s about the “getting the opportunity to read and shout about this book I know I will love already” thing. While seeing that, having to wait on the sidelines is HARD.

So, yeah. I am really insecure when it comes to ARCs. I know I could do a great job with it all. I know there are so many books I am dying to read, but will have to wait months and months to get to, for the time when I can finally buy them. By the time I read them, they won’t be the heart of the talk around the blogosphere. I’m always late to the hype, but that’s part of the reason why.

Sometimes, I wish ARCs weren’t a thing. Sometimes, I wish I could be given the same opportunities as others, even if I am living in baguettes country. Sometimes, I’m just sad. Maybe I am a bit bitter as well, but I am trying to get over it. Not getting ARCs is one of my biggest insecurities as a blogger, because it makes me feel like I am not doing a good enough of a job, or just like I plain SUCK.

There, I said it.

I don’t know if I will regret publishing this post. I hope no one will read this in a wrong way. People getting TONS of ARCs, people getting some ARCs, physical, digital, whatever. You’re lucky and don’t take these opportunities for granted. Promote the books, cry about getting these great books and blog your heart out. As for me. I’ll just keep on blogging my heart out, be thankful for the little opportunities I have every once in a while and swallow this insecurity until it dies down, someday. I guess I’m a worthy blogger. I hope I’m doing a good job. At least I’m trying the best I can to share the love.

How do you feel about ARCs? Do you feel rejected, sometimes, or is it just me? Do you feel “successful”, or like you are doing something good whenever you get approved for an ARC?

Overall, how do you feel about ARCs? Let me know your thoughts in comments!

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Book blogger, travel blogger, writer. πŸ“š |🌍 | πŸ’ž Writing & Communications Graduate. French. Living on love, wanderlust and ya books.

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