Okay, friends, this is a much overdue decision… It’s time to go on another ARC ban.
You might be thinking, “Destiny, didn’t you just post a few months ago about how you weren’t focusing on review copies anymore?” And yes, that’s true, but I’ve realized in the time since then that I have to find a balance.
While I do want to ensure I’m giving myself plenty of space for mood reading and backlist titles and re-reads, I also want to start working on my ARCs a bit more, because I can’t keep ignoring my ARC release schedule while continually downloading more and more titles.
So, I’m re-instating my ARC ban, with a few set-in-stone rules this time:
1. I have to read more than I haul every month.
Seriously, this is the rule from this list that I absolutely cannot allow myself to budge on. If I keep hauling more than I’m reading every month, I’ll never get anywhere near catching up. Even if I only read one more title than I haul in any given month, at least it’ll be forward progress!
The way I’m going about this is keeping a running tally sitting right here on my desk, with a space to mark how many ARCs I’ve hauled that month so far, and how many I’ve completed. I won’t allow myself to haul anything unless my “completed” number is already higher than my “hauled” number. For example, as I’m writing this (on May 4th), I’ve hauled 5 ARCs and read 3 — I can’t haul any other review copies until I read 3 more ARCs.
2. If a book wasn’t already a highly anticipated release, I have to wait 7 days to request/download it.
No more randomly scrolling Edelweiss and Netgalley and clicking “request” and “download” left and right. If I see a title I’m interested in, I’ll write it down on my little desk-list, date it, and then 7 days later, I can re-evaluate it and see if I still really want to read it! I’m doing this because I tend to request things on a whim and then realize 3 days later that I wasn’t all that interested in it, so I really think this will reduce the number of titles I even want to haul.
3. If I want to haul an indie book, I have to check KU first!
Look, friends… reading so many indie books is a blessing and a curse, because I can’t even describe how many books I’ve gotten from Netgalley, only for them to show up on Kindle Unlimited when they release, and then I’m sitting there going, “I have an overdue ARC on my shelves and I could’ve just waited and read the finished version, with no obligation to review it by a certain date???” This is especially ridiculous because then I end up borrowing it on KU anyways so that the author gets paid for me reading it, so it makes the whole Netgalley “middle man” super pointless. From now on, whenever it’s an indie book, I’ll check Amazon and see if the listing shows that it’ll be on KU, or if the author’s other books are typically on KU, and then I’ll just save it in a wishlist for later and wait! (Unless it’s one of my favorite indie authors, of course)
4. Finally, it’s time to pick up State of the ARC again!
I know I stopped doing State of the ARC posts a couple of months back because I thought they were adding to my stress too much, but honestly, I’ve really missed them! Plus, not keeping up with the number of ARCs I have vs. how many I read in a given month has made it much harder to practice self-control, because I don’t have those awful numbers glaring at me at the end of every month. ? So I’m excited to say I’ll be re-joining that post meme in a few weeks!
That’s it — those are the rules for my new ARC ban! I hope I’ll be able to really stick to it and make some good forward progress. Let me know if you’re on an ARC ban, or if you have been on one, and what you did! (Or if you want to join me on this one!)
— destiny ♥
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