I learned something new the other day, and thought I'd share it with you!
We are talking about ARC’s and Galleys, and no I don’t mean Noah’s ark, or kitchens.
ARC is really an acronym for two very similar things. The first is an Author Review Copy and the second, Advanced Reader Copy.
Essentially they are the same thing. Both are the almost, almost finished, completed—what-it’s-going-to look-like on the shelves of books stores or in the hands of reviewer’s—book. This is typically the last chance an Author, or the publisher has to make any last minute changes, usually on the simple side. They are bound, covered, printed books that come out just before the book itself is released. An Advance Reader Copy is the same thing, typically it’s the book sent out before the big release date to reviewers and what not, maybe a few are sent to the Author themselves for giveaways, contests or to add to their growing bookshelves. Of course these two types of ARC’s are also used for a lot of behind the scenes things like giving to various publishing people for various reasons, that I really know nothing about J
Either way, they are typically not sold and are not to be resold, though some ARC’s of some famous authors have been known to fetch quite a high price. Wouldn’t it be cool to own, or read a book before anyone else?
But before the ARC’s typically comes the Galley, again it’s not a kitchen, not even close. A galley is a book, usually not even nicely bound (but can be) after it’s been proofread and typeset. This is usually given again, to the author for final approval, publishing people and reviewers. These too can be given away for contests, or handed out at conventions. Typically not sold, and never land on your store shelf. These are the almost completed book, but again with a galley there is lots of room for change, and not always do they reflect the book that is released shortly after. Entire scenes can be changed, words taken out or added in, usually the only thing that’s set is the font and size of the print but even that can be changed.
Like the ARC, Galleys can land in the hands of readers, can make special additions to bookshelves and when an author is truly famous can be put up for auction and get a hefty price.
Could you image owning a galley of Harry Potter, or Twilight, or even a classic like To Kill a Mockingbird? To know you have something not ever else has adds to the allure, and the desire to want. They can include things that are not in the later versions of the book, secret deleted scenes that only you, and a hand full of other people have ever read. How cool would that be.
So, I guess it’s up to you, and your personally taste, there are some readers out there desperate to get their hands on these “special edition” books and some would rather lay in wait for the final, completed, perfectly bound and set book that every Jane can buy at the store.
The question is, how bad to you want to read that book?
But sadly, now with the internet being so easily accessible, and e-readers so handy, these forms of books might become a lost art form. The greener way to hand out books for review, final editing and the like is going digital. However it might never go completely out of style because I’m sorry, nothing compares to seeing a book, in your hands. One that you can hold up to your nose and smell the freshly printed pages, feel the glossy or embossed cover against your finger tips, or is as easy on the eyes, even with a pair of spectacles. Though, I suppose this article isn’t a question whether or not real books are as good as e-books, that’s for another day.