The Definitions Post

The Definitions Post

It has come to my attention that the book/writing community has somewhat amassed its own subdivision of terms and acronyms within the English language, and, as such, if you’re new to the online book world, you may need or want some translation services.

Definitions as follows:

ARC – Advanced Reader Copy

A version of a soon-to-be-publicly-released novel, often given freely to booksellers, journalists, celebrities, and voracious book reviewers before the book is officially published for mass distribution.

Book hangover

When you finish a book that was either so emotionally draining that you’re numb, or so fantastic that you’re depressed it’s finished. Either way, you’re left feeling meh, and will likely wander around like life has lost all purpose since you no longer have that book to read.


Instagram accounts or hashtags dedicated to books.


An sub-divison of YouTube where channels and creators focus solely on books – discussing books they’ve recently bought, read, want to read, plan to read, challenges, and more.

BOTM – Book Of The Month

Reading groups often pick a specific novel each month for its members to read and discuss.

DNF – Did Not Finish

A book found to be so boring and/or terrible by a reader that they stopped reading before the end.

New Adult

A new(ish) category of fiction wherein the characters usually range between 18-30 years of age.

TBR – To Be Read

Books that have not yet been read. Most likely to be seen as a “TBR Shelf”, which is generally a catch-all term for all the books a reader owns but has not yet read (for example: “it’s on my TBR shelf” – though shelf is often symbolic and such books my occupy multiply physical shelves depending on the reader’s speed of acquiring and accumulating books vs their actual reading pace), and “TBR List“, which is a group of books a reader hopes or plans to read over a given time frame (eg, “my November TBR list” or my “2022 TBR list”).

YA – Young Adult

A category of fiction books aimed at adolescent readers. However, though technically designed for 12-18 year olds (and, as such, usually features characters within this age bracket), over half of YA readers are actually adults.

More definitions will be added to this page as required, so please comment any additional terms below!

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