Today see’s the launch of bookbridgr, a new online resource for bloggers from Headline. Yet another site that has lost a vowel, I here you say. However, you can use it to request review copies, both ebook and print, direct from the publicists as well as content such as interviews and extracts, even giveaway copies. There’s also a section to check out upcoming blog tours and sign up.
Most of us are used to NetGalley by now and this just seems a bit more of a flexible, blogger friendly alternative, albeit with just the one publisher on at the moment. However, for those of you forever stressing about your NetGalley stats, bookbridgr gives you the option to “bridg” content on your blog even if you didn’t get the book through them. Every time you bridg something, you get a gold star, which is shown on your profile. This means, coverage such as giveaways and articles mentioning the book, also count towards your overall “score”.
To bridg posts for titles not on bookbridgr, you will need the ISBN, which adds an extra layer of faff but is a small price to pay for making your profile look a bit busier. Going forward, I would probably only bridg Headline titles and anything I’m particularly proud of. Of course, if the rest of the Hatchette Group jump on board, it’ll be a different matter.
Your profile isn’t public and can only be viewed by the publicists involved. You do need to provide your address (so they can send you physical books) and this is shown underneath your blog description. I personally have my address on NetGalley, but there it is an optional thing (no weirdo publicists have turned up on my doorstep yet).
There’s no keeping count. In fact, the one thing that is lacking is the record keeping side. It won’t tell you what books you’ve requested or had approved (you will get a friendly email from a publicist). Ebooks will be sent straight to your Kindle (no other ereaders are currently supported) by the publicist (so make sure you’ve added the bookbridgr email to your safe senders list). On the bright side, this means there’s no scary number making you feel like you’re behind or been over-enthusiastic with your requests!
There is a little bit of customisation available which means you can choose to only see the genres you're interested in on your "featured" page. Of course, you can always browse all (which is where's you'll find the search function if you are looking for something in particular) so you're not bound to the categories you signed up with.
Ahh, the dreaded terms and conditions. Plenty of people won’t bother reading them, but I’m sure a handful will stop at the we have rights to everything type clause in there. I’m pretty sure this is in there so they can store and administer your data AND have permission to reproduce on book covers. If they start doing anything suspicious with it, we’d soon leave in hordes. One thing you could do if worried, was just submit your most quotable bits along with the links.
Time will only tell if the hardworking publicists can keep up with the demand. Unlike NetGalley, you will need to have your registration approved, which will weed out those just looking for free books. Registrations will be staggered to begin with, so don’t worry if you don’t get approved straight away.
You can read up a bit more about the site on the bookbridgr blog