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Finding Balance | Netgalley Backlist & Rules


Overall, I have to say I am pretty good with keeping up with my Netgalley list now. I used to be fairly bad at it. I would often go on requesting sprees because I was not sure if I would or would not get approved for books. I figured most were a long shot and I would just up my odds by requesting a bunch. Well, that approach did not work.

When I first started I had no system or rules in place, so I would just pick a random ARC I needed to review and read it every so often. I did not account for when it came out or how long I had on my shelf. I was kind of overwhelmed and I had a ton on my kindle. I really had no idea where to start so I pick threw a dart and read that one.

This was not the best course of action for me. I saw more and more books go into the 6 months or older section and I became stressed. I was getting approved more often as I handed in reviews, which I was excited about, but then I had more and more books coming into my kindle that I previously. One day I was just so over whelmed I took a day and just went through everything. When I did this I came up with a few rules and tracking system that helped me.


My Tracking System

I made a really simple tracking system for myself. I write down the title, if I reviewed it, when it is to be published, and when it will be archived. When I go to read an ARC, I go to this list and I look at the published date to determine which one I will read next.

You may notice that I do not track which books I request. I used to, but now I only pick one ARC to request per month. You can see from the above image I have an ARC for February, March, April and July. I only requested one per month so I can’t get over whelmed with the ARCs coming in. Having one ARC a month means I can still read all the books I have on my shelf without worrying about getting my reviews in.

My Rules

Now these rules are just what works for me, that does not mean they will work for you, but I thought it would be interesting to share.

  1. Request one book per month, dependent on the release date.
    • This limits the amount of ARCs coming in
  2. Read the an ARC the month before it’s release date.
    • Takes the pressure off
  3. As soon as I get an approval email, add book to the ARC Tracker
    • This ensures I don’t forget a book I am approved for.
  4. Only request books I would pay to read.
    • This one is my top rules, this makes sure I request only books I will want to read asap. I will not want to put them off and I know I am not taking ARCs away from others who really want to read them.
  5. No book can make it to the 3 month or older shelf.
    • Ensures I keep my feedback ratio over 80%


The Current State of my Netgalley

Feedback Ratio: 87%

31 Approved  |  27 Feedback Sent


How do you manage your requests and netgalley reviews?


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19 thoughts on “Finding Balance | Netgalley Backlist & Rules

      1. I only joined in the summer and I’m pretty sure most of mine will be archived by now. It’s on my to do list but I’m a terrible procrastinator! When I do find the courage I’m gonna follow your lead 😁

        Liked by 1 person

  1. I haven’t requested anything from Netgalley in a while. For several reasons: 1) It takes me forever to read ebooks because I’m not a huge fan of them, 2) I have unread books from a year ago 3) I get a lot of ARCs from work (the Joy’s of working at a bookstore) and 4) I need to focus on the 200+ book on my physical TBR which include ARCs.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I really like your regimented system! my Netgalley account is out of control – I still have a 78% average which I’m happy with, but there are quite a few books from two years ago when I first created my account and went overboard requesting and then got too overwhelmed to read them all. I feel so bad, but I have no interest in them now after all this time :/

    I would request more books, but for some reason YA seems to have a lot of ‘wish for it’ entries, so that helps cut down on requests lately! I was talking to a friend and I don’t think the ‘wish’ function works for me properly because they don’t show up on my shelf, I was randomly perusing the ‘read now’ category and saw a book I’d wished for had shown up there, but I didn’t get a notification!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I can understand not being interested in the same books after so much time has passed. My reading tastes have changed very much from what I read 5 years ago.

      Very strange that it was not giving you a notification. I never did used the wish function so I can’t say if it works that way for me or not. Hopefully it gets fixed for you!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Netgalley is SUCH a dangerous place. Especially if you first start out since you simply go on requesting sprees all the time, haha. I’ve always managed to stay on top of my ARC’s though. I guess that’s mainly because I was easily able to read three to four books a week? That’s changed by now, but still.

    I know that right now, I have three unread and unreviewed ARC’s waiting for me but the first to release only releases in April so I’m alll good. I’ve requested some more but, honestly? Being an international blogger sucks sometimes since I get denied most of the books I’m interested in. Life! 😛
    [Guess being international also helps in staying on top of those ARC’s in a way, haha.]

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It really can be dangerous, especially when starting. This that is exactly what I did.

      Sorry you have a higher chance of being denied for being international, it really does stink. I do hope more is available to you in the future.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Exactly, haha.

        Oh well, in a way it’s convenient to keep things under control some more, but sometimes it’s simply frustrating to see friends getting approved left and right while I’m struggling all the time. 😛 Depends on my mood how I feel about it, haha.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. I’ve only recently been using NetGalley more as a book blogger. When I first started, I was overwhelming myself with all the ‘read now’ books because I wanted to get my feedback ratio up so I would be more likely to be accepted for requests, but I ended up reading books I hated and wanted to DNF, so I did. Ever since then, it’s been so much better for me. I don’t feel as stressed out. Some of my rules are the same as yours, like requesting one ARC a month, and I’m aiming to read them at least a month before so there’s no pressure to get a review out for the sake of getting it out. It’s made life so much easier and gives me more time for the books actually on my shelf. I love your tracker as well! I definitely need a way of keeping track of mine.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Glad to hear how you manage your netgalley account. Funny how we have a few “rules” in common! The read now section is a hard one, it just calls you in to add a bunch to your shelf.

      Also, thanks for the complement on my tracker it really does help me because I don’t always want to get on the computer to check/plan my reading.


  5. I also try to not request everything at once! Did that in the beginning as well, and learned from my mistakes haha. Also I only request books I’m genuinely interested in!


    Liked by 1 person

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