Wednesday, June 4, 2008

She's Watching the Mail for Returning ARCs

Prior to the release of novels, authors typically send out advance reader copies (ARCs) for marketing blurbs to put on the cover jacket and for professional review. My fantasy author, Sandy Lender, has been engaged in this practice for a couple weeks now, seeking out professional reviewers who a) read fantasy and b) will accept ARCs. It's surprising the fine line of time during which reviewers will accept a work for review. They want the book to be a published work, but they want it on their reading schedule while the book is "new". Considering the backlog some of these reviewers have, this means they should never read a "new" book. Be that as it may, she's having some success getting ARCs for Choices Meant for Kings out the door.

When the post office doesn't thwart her.

Here's why she's grumbling. She took one of these advance reader copies, beautifully spiral bound (which she spent a pretty penny to do, by the way), and mailed it from the post office to a reviewer in Canada who is anxiously awaiting its arrival. A day later, the package was returned. It needed a customs form. Considering Sandy had taken it to the post office for mailing, it seemed odd to her that the post office was returning it for something they should have "noticed" when she said, "this one is going to Canada; can I still send it by media mail, or is there some other way we have to use?"

So she hoofed it (her phrase, not mine) back to the post office yesterday to try again. The lady behind the counter gave her a form to fill out and did something Sandy did not expect. She didn't charge her to re-post the package. In fact, the lady printed a new postage label with the new date and affixed it to the package just below the original postage label. Sandy questioned this, but was told it would be fine.

Now Sandy's betting anyone who's willing to take the bet that this package gets returned again because the post office (read: government entity) will want more postage for having to touch the package a second time.

In the meantime, she's repeating her announcement that any professional reviewers willing to read the ARC for Choices Meant for Kings can contact her through this site. She still has a few left.

All my best,
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