Sunday, January 14, 2007

Take My ARCs, Please

My very kind editor just sent me a box of ARC copies of my May release, Night Lost. After I send the ones I've promised to Mom, friends and reviewers who have requested copies, I'll still have ten copies leftover.

I feel like trying something different this time -- how about you all decide what happens to them?

In comments to this post, let me know what you think should be done with one Night Lost ARC (besides give it to you or something anatomically unlikely.) Post your suggestion by midnight EST on Monday, January 15th. I'll draw five names from everyone who participates, and send the winners a signed ARC of Night Lost. I will also use each of the winners' suggestions to distribute the remaining five ARCs. Giveaway open to everyone on the planet, even if you've won something here at PBW in the past.


  1. Auction one off and use the funds raised as a donation to one of the breast cancer foundations. ^_^


  2. I think Alison Kent had that one, but there's no reason not to copy a good idea. :) Ask people to name someone whom they think should get a copy and why.

  3. Donate it to a hospital ward. :)

  4. Leave it somewhere prominant, like a cafe or big-store toilet with a card inside asking the finder to enjoy it and send their thoughts on it to your e-mail address.

  5. Donate them to a women's shelter.

  6. Anonymous8:30 AM

    I'll second PJ's idea. I already know that your backlist books sell well on eBay, so an ARC, that would definitely sell well. Especially if it was signed by the author.

    In line with the donation idea? A nursing home/convolscent center, cancer treatment center, women's shelter, or an adult literacy program.

    Just a few thoughts,

  7. Send it out into the big wide world, using book crossing.

    (okay, that's just a variation on leatherdykeuk's idea, but it comes with a link!)

  8. Anonymous9:25 AM

    Send one to a soldier.
    There's not a lot of books at war, and I can't think of anyone who needs escape from reality more than the people who are seeing the worst of it every day.
    There's (of course) a web site set up ( that you can check out; I've got several friends and family members involved in exchange packages - if you want a more personal touch I can pass on their names. But you probably don't have to go as far as six degrees of separation to find someone that knows someone overseas right now.

  9. Anonymous9:34 AM

    buffysquirrel stole my idea. ;p Bookcrossing was the first thing i thought of.

    But the auction off on ebay for charity sounds like a wonderful idea.

    So does sending it across seas to a soldier

  10. Send the whole lot to the Red Cross in Denver. They're likely to be snowed in for the rest of the winter, and the RC can distribute them to warming centers.

  11. Anonymous9:47 AM

    This is a toughie.

    I've been trying to think of something original and clever, but have to admit I suck at things like this. Guess I'm too much of a linear thinker.

    My first thought was to donate it to a hospital I'm sure there are people out there who it would really cheer up to have an ARC of their book.

    Sending a copy to a soldier is a good idea as well.

    I like the idea that it would go to someone who it would really make their month that they received it.

    LesleyW - I will continue to try and think of something clever and original. :)

  12. Anonymous10:11 AM

    Our library has a bunch of ARCs. Pretty cool! Gives us plenty of time to buzz about them to our friends before the real release so they'll buy them!

    (Although I vote for the soldier, woman's shelter, and hospital ward. Bookcrossing is fun, too. :-) )

  13. Register it with (if you can) and set it free in the wild.

  14. Anonymous10:41 AM

    Wow, these are all really good ideas. I hope you have enough copies to do one of each.

    Hrm, this idea is lame compared to those, but how about leaving a copy at your doctor's office next time you go in? It would be much better reading than old magazines.

  15. I'm in favour of donating the book (or the proceeds from its sale). Bookcrossing is a great idea too.

    If you've got any other books lying around the house you would like to give away, you could cobble the whole lot together and organise a book giveaway at your local library.

    If you want to do something more whacky, put it in a time capsule along with a little note addressed to some future far-off descendant of yours. They would be thrilled to find it.

  16. Anonymous11:06 AM

    Take them to a doctor's office and ask if you can leave them on the table for people to flip through. I'm always looking for something better to read at the doctor's office, especially when all they have is "GOLF DIGEST" or "GOOD HOUSEKEEPING". Bleh.

    Alternately, if you're not wanting to market, I'd suggest taking them to a nursing home.

  17. You could give it to one of your local Relay for Life teams and they could use it for their fundraising (that way you don't actually have to do the fundraising yourself) and the money would go to the American Cancer Society. You could give it to your local library, and they could use it to raise funds (Hell, you could give it to my local library if yours is living high on the hog- :o) ). Or perhaps, in honor of Martin Luther King Jr. Day, you could give the proceeds to a local Civil Rights Organization, or even to Amnesty.

  18. Leave them in various Starbucks with Post It's in them saying that if they go to your blog and post you the 75th word on page 167 you'll send them some Silly Putty. (Ok, kidding on the Silly Putty) Write on there that they have to leave the book on the table where they found it (just for the idiots), but that they can win a copy. Do a drawing for a huge PBW giveaway for them. Maybe you can mail them to friends to put all over the country too. I have a few by me, I'll be happy to. :)

    And I've sent packages of books to the soldiers. Mortal Sins by Penelope Williamson, The Lobster Chronicles and The Hungry Ocean by Linda Greenlaw were my favorite to send. They sent thank you notes back.

  19. Anonymous11:15 AM

    Send them to the amputee ward of military hospitals for severely injured troops.

  20. Anonymous11:26 AM

    Go through the entire book, writing jokes about the story in the margins as you go. Autograph it, write a price on the inside and leave it a used book store.

    It could be funny!

  21. Most of my ideas have already been mentioned before, but they're worth repeating.

    -Send to a deployed military unit (especially one that does medical). Especially with the planned surge in headcount coming up, there'll be plenty of men & women to read it (and hopefully their time over there will be boring enough that they have plenty of time to read). (And of all of mine, this one is my favorite!)

    -Donate to a library or school

    -Donate to a domestic violence shelter

    -Donate to a hospital, cancer treatment center or hospice group.

  22. Being late with my comments, means all of my ideas have already been posted. My favorites would be to send a book or three to a military service person overseas, or donate a book or three to a library or three so others can read your wonderful books.

  23. I've seen similar ideas, but...

    Auction it off on e-bay and donate the money to the ACLU to help ensure artistic freedom, online free speech, and all that other hippie liberal good stuff.

  24. Anonymous12:47 PM

    This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  25. Anonymous12:49 PM

    The auction off idea was my first thought, too. Sign it, and sell it on Ebay and donate the money to your favorite charity.

  26. Anonymous12:50 PM

    You could donate it to a local college or university that has a creative writing program - it could have many uses in the classroom setting.

  27. I like the auction idea but it needs some kind of vampire bonus. Too bad they don't make action figures of characters (or at least not yet)!

    I guess this is a pretty lame post, but it's only Sunday!

  28. My ideas have already been said. But I'll repeat them anyway
    1 Send to a soldier
    2 Bookcrossing
    3 Auction
    4 Donate it
    5 Have a special contest and sale

  29. The best I can come up with since there's been a lot of good ones is to donate them to a local American Legion. Our Legion collects books and then ships them off to the soliders or veteran hospitals.

  30. Anonymous1:50 PM

    Excellent suggestions -- and don't worry about repeats; there are only so many things you can do with an ARC.

    The comment I did delete was an obnoxious SPAM. Sorry, folks.

  31. very good ideas!! My first thought was to donate a copy to the local library which is what I do with magazines and books I'm done with or have extra copies of.

  32. Anonymous2:47 PM

    What about donating to an illiteracy center for them to auction?

  33. Donate them to your local Breast Cancer Awareness charity to auction off. Our family found out the hard way that being very healthy, having low risk factors and being over 65 is no guarantee against breast cancer.

    Have a mammogram today. It won't be as painful as cancer.

  34. I like the idea of donating it to a cancer treatment center (my grandmother and mother would love to read stuff like that when they're there).

    Otherwise, the e-bay auction thing was really good...and donating it to the libraries and college writing programs are awesome concepts, too. time you're flying somewhere, leave a copy in the seat pocket in front of you for the next person on the next flight to read!

  35. This is a great topic because I have a stack of ARCs for books I reviewed that I never know what to do with. Do the libraries take ARCs? I don't think I have seen ARCs at the library.

    I do like the idea of selling them on eBay and donating the proceeds to a charity. I don't think I can do that with my copies, maybe if I got permission from the original author? What to do with them after reviewing seems to be a touchy subject.

  36. Donate them to a literacy group - that way you know they'll be read, albeit slowly; not just to any library, but one who desperately needs books - places devastated by Katrina, for example.

    Medical facilities, auctions, same as everyone else, I guess

  37. Anonymous5:10 PM

    Ditto all the other wonderful ideas, but my favorite is to send one to a soldier.

  38. If I knew what an ARC was, it might help. I'm assuming it's a book copy that's not ready for prime time?

    There's places that teach adults to read that might like free books. Or donate one to a homeless shelter. All the ideas here are great, I can't think of much new.

  39. I'm a surgical resident working at the statewide Metrohealth Burn Unit in Cleveland, Ohio. The patients we have here are forced to stay in bed, with very restricted movement, to prevent injury to their skin grafts. They have very little to do but read and watch TV.
    New reading material would be much appreciated here at the Burn Unit.

  40. Ok this is a bit ridiculous and out there but...

    You could sign it, then have someone hide it in a good reliable and public place.

    Then organize a scavenger hunt where your fans look for clues as to where ryou had the book hidden-- have a small entry fee for scavenger hunt, then set the off on the hunt.

    The winner keeps the book, you get to use any of the profits to dante to a charity and everyone had fun on the scavenger hunt.

    Crazy, but it was the first thing that popped into my head. :)

  41. Lots of good suggestions, but I think Deuz Augustine's is the most unique!

    I'd suggest auctioning it off, either on EBay with proceeds going to your favorite charity or a local charity auction. If you don't happen to have one, may I suggest either Polar Bears International or a no-kill animal shelter/fostering organization.

  42. You ever see the story about the two guys who stole some ladies garden gnome (or goose or something) and then went around the country with him, photographing him in different places doing different things? Or the Flat Stanley idea where people have their pictures taken with the paper cut out boy? Why not do the same thing with your ARCs. Send them out to ten people around the world who agree to photograph your ARC in an interesting place--and maybe pass them on to other people who will do the same, then post the pictures on your blog.
    Maybe give a prize to the most creative photo submitted. Or have people submit photos using one of your books--and give the ARCs as the prizes.

  43. Hm, I think my idea got taken along the way. I'd say donate it to Relay for Life. They would auction it off and the proceeds would go to the American Cancer Society (my sister and I help out with the local event every year).

  44. Library programs need more books when they have book club readings. This would be helpful and good use of the ARC.

  45. Anonymous7:34 PM

    I'm always all for donating to a women's shelters, hospitals, and nursing homes. Auctioning a copy for charity is also a great idea, as well as donating to a school library. All of the suggestions are great, and I look forward to seeing what becomes of the ARC's! :-)

  46. Anonymous7:38 PM

    My other idea is "winner's choice." Each of the winners who gets an ARC must decide where another ARC is sent/donated and share their decisions with everybody.

  47. A lot of great suggestions and I am probably saying the same thing but wanted to get my vote in anyhow.
    My Suggestions:

    1) Send a book or two to the soldiers (I happen to know that a lot of people out there read since they don't leave the base often).
    2) Put the book up for a charity auction and donate the money.
    3) Donate to a library or a place that would benefit having the books for people who love to read.
    4) Randomly give your book away to someone you see reading a book on a train or some public area you happen to be at. You could also stick a note in the book requesting that the reader kindly leave a comment about your book on Amazon, etc when done.
    5) Give the book to a favorite author of yours, out of the blue and just because. It would be a nice change of pace for some authors I would think.

  48. I haven't read all of the above comments, but here are a few suggestions that spring immediately to mind:

    1. Your local librarian should get a copy - these people are among my most trusted source of book recos.

    2. Send one to the friend you always wanted to get back in touch with. Or to the snotty teacher whom you've always wanted say 'nyah nyah nyah' to. (Nothing gives a kick like indulging the id.)

    3. Send one to your favourite adult literacy programme.

    4. Leave one at a cafe or a park (when the weather is good!) ... sorta like Bookcrossing.

    5. Your local newspaper and radio shows should definitely get a copy - you never know who'll do your advertising for you.


  49. Having spent countless hours this past year in the hospital ER with nothing to do but listen to the monitors beep overhead and beg the nurses for reading material, I realized they are in dire need of books, for those patients who are alert, able and willing to read while biding their time.

  50. Please donate them to the Troops.

  51. auction one off for with the funds going to local fund like the one we have set up that deals with uncovered items for cancer patients or some other worthy charity.
    Have poeple nominate worthy recipients and give them and the nominee one.

  52. Anonymous11:40 PM

    My sister is going into an inpatient treatment program tomorrow. She's not much of a reader but whenever she goes in they have a lockdown and she can't leave. All the patients want books and magazines since most of the time they are sitting around bored and being monitored. I know they are trying to build a library since I have visited the facility before. Most of the people in there are young women. I think sending a book to someplace like that would be nice.

  53. Anonymous12:26 AM

    You could donate them to a soldier. I'm pretty sure that they need something to get their minds off of their current situation.

    You could auction it off on e-bay and send that money to a charitable organization--Red Cross, Breast Cancer Research, Children's Hospital, etc.

    You could give away a copy to a library.

    Donate the books to sick kids in the hospital, or, in a variation of what I said earlier, auction on e-bay and give the money to the hospital.

    Hope those ideas are any good. Best of luck!


  54. Anonymous12:40 AM

    Like some other's I am not sure that libraries can take ARC's but if they can I vote for the Harris County Library System. Story here: The link is to a closed book drive from this summer but my friend living in New Orleans was on a volunteer committee to clean up the libraries there and they still have a lot of work to do. If you love books and you click the link I'm warning you your heart is going to break a little.

    p.s. I also love the idea of sending one to the troops.

  55. Anonymous1:21 AM

    I like the idea of donating them to a women's shelter. Or donating them to any organization of your choice. ^_^

    Leaving them in a doctor's waiting room would be a treat too. So many good ideas! I'll be interested to see what you finally decide. =)

  56. I noticed a couple of other people had the same idea I had of donating a book to a library devastated by Katrina. If that is not an option then one should be auctioned off and the money should be donated to a charity that is helping to rebuild New Orleans. They really need our help down there.

  57. Well, I know it's more work, but I think Heidi's right. You should auction the book rather than giving it to a shelter, etc.

    I honestly do think they'd benefit more from the cash than they would from a free book, because you could just send books that you've read that didn't make your keeper shelf and they'd get the same amount of benefit.

    Or offer it to a charity/organisation an ARC for its annual auction or similar.

  58. I've already put in my suggestion, but I want to stick my hand up for Lori Devoti's idea! It's way cool! You could recruit a list of people from different countries. Then you send the ARC to the first person on the list, they take a picture of it with a local landmark, then they send it on to the next person and so on. Then everyone can email you the photos the took and you can put them all up on your website.

  59. I would bookcross it too. But instead of releasing it in the wild, do a bookray or ring. You'll get better feedback and know that people are reading it.

  60. Anonymous9:50 AM

    My suggestions were already up there. Bookcrossing and auctioning it on ebay for charity.

  61. Anonymous10:46 AM

    Wow. What an amazing collection of great ideas! I don't have anything fresh to add, so I'll just vote for my favs (in no particular order)

    - Troop donation
    - women's shelter or cancer rehab
    - School

    I can imagine it would reall trigger some interest in writing if a school got an autographed ARC and have a lesson or two about it to the class.

  62. Anonymous11:12 AM

    If you have a connection to a local bookstore and one particular person works that section - perhaps donating a copy to her for advance reading and promotion would work or if your local PBS station has a book review program, perhaps sending it to one of the reviewers there.

  63. Anonymous11:15 AM

    Lots of great suggestions, as people have noted.

    Another peculiar suggestion then: Book in a Bottle.

    Find a jar or a bottle you can squeeze the book into, and seal it up. Set it free on a major river or at the ocean. Surely a pickling or jam jar would suffice? Don't forget to include your message!

    Love the blog.

  64. Donate them to a college library. Students are often short on cash and it would give them a chance to read one of your books and ask their parents to buy some.

  65. Anonymous7:04 PM

    Donate copies to various hospitals with terminally ill patients. Often, something as simply as a really good read can uplift the spirit of those who so desperately need it.

  66. I'm in favour of giving it to the forces overseas or to a hospital (either burn patients or the terminally ill).


  67. Most of my ideas have already been suggested, so I'll just say...bookcrossing. Or, leave it somewhere for someone to pick up. Also put a note inside to have that person do the same when he or she is done with it. I wonder how far one book could go....

    Erin K.