Bookstagram Terms & Lingo You Need to Know

If you’ve recently joined Bookstagram (or you’ve just heard of it), you may have come across some words or acronyms that are new to you. Don’t worry: I’ve got you covered! I put together a list of popular Bookstagram terms you need to know!

Bookstagram lingo can be a bit overwhelming at first, but this post will help get you up to speed. Soon enough, I’ll bet you’ll be using these Bookstagram terms all the time. 🙂 Now, let’s get to it!

Bookstagram Terms & Lingo You Need to Know

Bookstagram Acronyms

TBR List: To-Be-Read list (a list of books you want to read). If your TBR list isn’t a mile long, you might not be a true Bookstagrammer yet (but you’ll get there).

CR: Current Read. (Often placed in a Bookstagrammer’s bio).

DNF: Did Not Finish. A book you couldn’t get through, no matter how hard you tried.

BIPOC: Black, Indigenous, and people of color

BOTM: Book of the Month. A monthly subscription service that allows members to select certain new & buzzworthy books at lower-than-usual prices.

QOTD: Question of the day. Often added to a post’s caption to ask readers’ opinions on a particular topic. (Check out this list for more bookstagram post ideas & photo inspiration!)

Bookstagram Terms to Know

Buddy Read: An agreement between two or more Bookstagrammers to read a book at the same time and discuss it afterward (sort of like a digital book club, but often on a smaller scale).

Reading Slump: A period of time in which you have difficulty picking up a book or you struggle with reading. (A much-dreaded, but often inevitable, time in one’s life).

Slump Buster: The book that mercifully ends a reading slump.

Book Hangover: The last book you read emotionally wrecked you, and/or you loved it so much you can’t stop thinking about it.

Mood Reader: You choose the books you read based on your mood at the time (as opposed to following a set reading list or schedule). (Here’s a guide all about mood reading, plus genre recommendations to read based on your mood!).

Constant Reader: A lifelong fan of Stephen King who will continue to read his books for the rest of his/her days. (Because, honestly, who wouldn’t? Once you’ve discovered The King, you can’t go back.)

Backlist Book: A book that was published before the current year.

Brand Rep: A book influencer who partners with a brand to help spread the word about that brand’s products.

Rep Search: A short period of time in which a brand searches for brand reps (or “ambassadors”) to partner with. Typically, Bookstagrammers will enter the rep search by posting on their feed with information about themselves.

Shelfie: A photo of one’s bookshelf.

white bookshelf filled with colorful books and a white potted succulent on a small stack of books in front

Wrap-Up: An overview of the books you read over the past month. Often includes star ratings for each book.

Feature Account: A type of Instagram account that features other Instagrammer’s photos on their feed. Typically, users who want to be featured will use the featured account’s designated hashtag in their post(s).

Bookish Merch: Literary-inspired items such as candles, art, bookmarks, book sleeves, t-shirts with bookish quotes, mugs, and everything in between.

Book Mail: Books received via the mail. (I know, I know; you’re in awe of my striking descriptive skills.)

Unboxing: A video detailing the contents of a book-related subscription box or other book mail. Generally includes displaying items like books, candles, art, and other bookish merch.

General Reading & Bookish Terms

Fandom: A group of people who lovingly obsess over a particular fictional world and/or book series.

Book Nook: A special reading spot (generally uber- comfortable and tucked away from the rest of the world).

Book Stack: A stack of books. Sometimes organized based on a theme, such as color, size, or genre.

Book Hoarder: A lovely human who enjoys collecting, hoarding, or otherwise being surrounded by books at all times.

Book Haul: A display or video sharing books received from a particular source (a bookstore, a secondhand store, as a gift, from a publisher, etc.).

Cliffhanger: When a book ends right in the middle of a dramatic scene, and you’re left desperate to know what’s going to happen. (Inevitably leads to a sequel).

HEA: Happily ever after.

Ship: You are fully behind a character’s relationship with another character, and you want everyone to know it. (Usage: I ship ____ and _____.).

Publishing-Related Terms

ARC: Advanced Reader Copy. ARC books are free uncorrected proofs of books provided by a publisher prior to a book’s release. Often, these are gifted to readers in the Bookstagram community as a way to generate buzz and reviews.

e-ARC: A digital ARC/advanced reader copy, often gifted from the publisher via Netgalley or Edelweiss.

Netgalley/Edelweiss: Websites that allow readers to request digital review copies/e-ARCs from publishers. (Here’s an in-depth guide to NetGalley and how to request e-ARCs for review!)

Finished Copy: A finalized copy of the book: i.e., what you’ll find in bookstores when the book is published. (As opposed to an advanced reader copy).

Physical Copy: A copy of a book (either hardcover or paperback) that you can hold in your hands (as opposed to an ebook or audiobook).

That’s all I have for now – hope it helps! Is this list of Bookstagram terms missing anything? Let me know in the comments!

For more Bookstagram tips and tricks, check out:

You might also be interested in my Bookstagram Ultimate Guide or Bookstagram Planner & Hashtag Flipbook. Happy Bookstagramming!

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