by Mike Onorato, Executive Director of Publicity, originally posted on the IngramSpark blog
Galleys (or ARCs) continue to be a vital step in the book marketing process, which can help garner reviews which make or break a book. As important as galleys are, the accompanying galley letter is equally important. Knowing how to construct a letter that helps sell your book to the media (what to include and the overall structure) can help get your galley/book get noticed and, ultimately, get media coverage and stocked by retailers.
Keep in mind just how many books/galleys reviewers, media contacts, booksellers and librarians receive; the numbers are astounding. A galley letter is the book publicity key that can open the door to get someone to genuinely consider reviewing or stocking your book.
Most trade outlets request multiple copies, so you’ll want to include a letter with each galley, folded into the inside cover and sticking out. Also, fold them so the print is showing, not the blank side. If possible, bind the galleys you’re sending with a rubber band. Use your letterhead and sign the letters, too. This personal step can help.
It’s a Vehicle
Your galley letter is a vehicle to convey pertinent information about you and your book to a reviewer, library, or retailer. It’s not a press release and shouldn’t be written as such. You don’t want to repurpose your press release or emphasize what you could discuss in an interview. Keep your audience in mind. You want to make the case as to why your galley should be considered and why it’s unique from other, similar books.