Discussion: What do you do with your ARCs when you finish them?

So I wasn't actually planning on posting this yet. It was actually gonna be planned for in a few weeks, but I decided to move it up after a renewed interest in the topic this past week.

So if there's anything most of us can agree on in the bookish community its this, don't sell ARCs! I think the one thing that drives most of us nuts is seeing an ARC being sold online, or in a bookstore. This week as I was at one of the locations of my local used bookstore (it has 3 locations around town) I was browsing the Young Adult section as I usually do and low and behold I found this sitting on the shelf to be bought:



This wasn't the only ARC on the shelves either. I found at least one more among the books. Now I'm the person who will buy the ARC off the shelf if it's one I'm interested in just so it won't be on the shelf to be sold anymore or be bought by someone who will then sell it again.

This really really bugs me! So let me explain how my local used bookstore works. They get most of their books/games/etc, through trade in. As in people bring in things they want to get rid of to get trade credit to buy new things. What bugs me is someone knowingly brought this and the other ARC in and made money for themselves off it. Its just wrong. I'm a little less grumpy if say a library is selling an ARC and the money is going towards the library and all it does. But getting money for yourself from an ARC bothers me.

What do you do with ARCs then? These are great things either I've done myself or others do regarding ARCs that don't involve making money off them.

1. Keep Some
Ok, I'm not saying you HAVE to keep them, but some people do keep a few. For example, that background I used, is actually a picture of all my ARCs currently. Out of that I do have a few I'm not parting with. Shatter Me is one of them. It was my first ever physical ARC. I won it in a giveaway from Harper and its special to me. But you know, it's normal for people to keep at least a few I think.

2. Give Them Away
Now, I mean this is a number of ways. You could host a giveaway on your blog/site/whatever you use. I've done this with some ARCs. But, you could also give them to close friends or family. I've done this. In 2012 I won a box of 10 ARCs of Hemlock by Kathleen Peacock. I kept one to read and review. I then gave 2 to friends. Sent a few to other blogger friends who wanted to read and review it. And then gave the rest away for my blogoversary. I kid you not, seeing how happy someone is after winning a giveaway is so much better than making money off an ARC!

3. Trade Them
Nowadays, there's these handy dandy twitter hashtags named #booksfortrade & #arcsfortrade. Lots of people trading books. Now, I haven't used this yet. Mostly because I've heard about some drama with certain people not holding up to their end (like they agree on a trade but then one person sends and the other doesn't). Or the fact some people only want certain books, even if what they have isn't a good trade for said books. One day I might try it, but not yet. I am more willing to trade within smaller groups of bloggers though. That's what I used to do and had no issues with.

4. Donate Them
I haven't done this. I don't think there's a lot of good places in my area I can donate ARCs without seeing them back on a shelf. But I know in other places, people have had luck donating them to places such as shelters.

What do you do with ARCs you no longer want/need? Do you have any other ideas?

12 comments

  1. Not knowing what to do with them after reading is one reason I don't accept physical ARC books. I'm happier to have the eBook where I can just delete and be done. It's not the same as reading a paper book of course, but much easier for me!

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    1. Agreed! I only get a small number of physical ARCs. Most I win but a few I do request. I tend to overwhelmingly read more eBook ARCs as well. I think I determined a few days ago that 90% of my ARCs were in ebook form. I usually just give the few I do get away, mostly to other bloggers.

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  2. I've received a few paperback ARC's and I've giving them away in a giveaway on the blog, but for the most part my ARC's are eCopies and well those you just keep or remove off your devices. I haven't given them too my library that is the other option I do have. I don't mind seeing my library get the money, but to have it in a bookstore for sale, nope..

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    1. Same. I usually just give the few I get away on the blog. I love letting other bloggers get the chance to win and read it! Yeah. 90% of my ARCs are eBooks. I find it much easier to get advanced copies on NetGalley anyways compared to requesting a physical copy. I try to save requesting physical ARCs for books I REALLY want to have in my hands to read. I don't know if my library takes ARCs. I've never seen any at my library before. And definitely! I'd be ok if the library gets the money cuz I know they offer a lot for the community besides books. But knowing people are just making a profit for themselves from the bookstore off ARCs. Nope. Does not sit well with me.

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  3. I had heard that we can't even give them away...so I just put them in recycling, which is not much better...as I guess someone could dumpster dive and then sell them...sigh.

    I do prefer the e-book ARCs. I just send them to the Cloud when I'm done. Delete them? I didn't know that was a possibility. Hmm.

    Great post.

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    1. Really? Hmm. I had a publisher tell me I could give an ARC away before that I got from them. Maybe certain publishers aren't huge fans on giving them away while others don't mind? OMG. Me and my fiance used to live in an apartment complex where half the residents seriously went dumpster diving with no shame. I was horrified. I got incredibly picky with what I put in the dumpster when we saw that going on.

      I too prefer the eBook versions. Its just easier for me to request and read those compared to requesting physical books. Lol. I didn't know about deleting them either. They just kinda sit there. Which is fine if I wanna reread them then. Lol. I'm sure its probably easy to delete them but I just haven't looked to hard into how to do it.

      Thanks! :)

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  4. I usually leave mine in a local Little Free Library. So far I haven't seen any return to the local UBS.

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    1. That's super cool! I've yet to see any Little Free Library's pop up near me. But if I did ever find one, it would definitely be another option I'd consider!

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  5. I'm having a hard time reading ebooks lately so I rather go with physical ARCs. I like to donate them to my local library Great post :)

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    1. That's a great idea. I've never tried it since I've never seen or heard of my library having some. Maybe next time I go in I'll have to ask if they take them. Thanks! :)

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  6. I've donated some of my ARCs to my local library, and I've also left some at the train station, where they have a book exchange. I've done #BooksForTrade a few times too but not often. And, of course, giveaways on my blog!

    Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction

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    1. Yes! My favorite way is giveaways! I love letting someone who wants to read that book win it! It always makes people so happy! I've yet to find any type of book exchange around my area. I should look into whether my library takes ARCs. I've never thought about asking since I've never seen any hint of them having any.

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