If you have a great idea for a book, you've come to the right place. My name is Hy Bender.
How To Write A Book Proposal Posted on by Karen Kelsky You all know that the book proposal is the cornerstone to a successful tenure track career in most areas of the humanities and social sciences.
Sure, some parts of psychology and economics and other fields are not book-based, but basically, the law of the land is: What you may not be aware of is that the book proposal should be an element in your job applications.
In this job market, you have to be looking ahead to the book, and able to speak intelligently about the book and its publishing plan, from the earliest days, ie, even when you are ABD and still finishing the dissertation. The fact is, the dissertation does not get you a job.
The anticipated book gets you the job. OK, having established the necessity of writing a book proposal from early, early stages in your career, we now turn to the proposal itself.
This is actually a collection of writing a book proposal fiction, and not just a proposal. In general, you do not submit a complete dissertation manuscript to a press.
This is true even if it won awards at your university and got passed with distinction, etc. And the best dissertation in the world is not going to be the same as a marketable book.
Dissertations are written to prove your legitimacy and to demonstrate mastery and to satisfy an impossible set of mutually contradictory demands set up by your advisor and committee. None of these things make for a marketable book that appeals to the widest possible audience.
I will elaborate further below. So what do you submit to presses? You submit the following: Today, however, we will restrict ourselves to discussing the book proposal itself.
I will pause to say that of course, you should carefully check the requirements for submission listed on the press website. And ideally, you will have been in conversations with an editor or series editor at the press prior to submitting your package. Blind, or unsolicited submissions, with no advance footwork, have a significantly lower success rate.
Be aware that you ARE permitted to multiple-submit to different presses simultaneously! This differs from refereed journal articles.
This simply has to be fully disclosed in the cover letter.
The Book Proposal The book proposal is a sales document. It is entirely dedicated to showing that your book has a market and will sell.
They think like writers and forget they are selling a product! Book publishers are in the business of making money — even not-for-profit academic publishers need to keep themselves afloat.
In reality this means you must pitch more than a unique contribution to knowledge. You must demonstrate that your book has a readymade, and accessible, academic readership, which means that your query letter and proposal are, in a sense, sales documents. So, you thought you were in the business of having ideas, but what you must now take onboard is that you also in the business of selling them!
Hear, hear, Gary of Bubblecow and be sure and check out Bubblecow for more information—albeit UK-focused— on book proposals! The sad fact is that university presses are dropping like flies in this economic downturn, and can no longer publish small, obscure specialized monographs the way they used to when our disciplines were younger.
University libraries are also under extreme budgetary strain, and have drastically reduced their purchases of new monographs, so the potential market for university press books has shrunk considerably.
Read what Ken Wissoker, the Editorial Director of Duke University Press, has to say in another recent post on PhD2Published about the state of academic publishing and library acquisitions: Libraries have made deeper and deeper cuts in their budget for books to pay for…big journal packages.
In the early 80s a huge proportion of a library budget went on books. This results in a whole set of books that would have been publishable in a form individual scholars could afford five or ten years ago, but which will no longer have enough sales to be viable.The Source for Book Proposals Success!
How to Write a Book Proposal is THE resource for getting your work published. This newly revised edition of the Writer's Digest Books classic outlines how to create an effective, nonfiction book proposal in a clear, step-by-step manner/5(20).
A fiction book proposal is really just a longer version of a literary agent query letter. You might find it helpful to think of your query letter as an “Executive Summary” of your fiction book proposal.
Writing a fiction book proposal can be tricky, because not all literary agencies and 5/5(10). And conceptually, the proposal covers roughly a third of the work involved in creating the full book—i.e., it's akin to the book's skeleton, plus most of its brain (while writing the rest of the book is effectively adding flesh and blood to that skeleton).
How To Write A Book Proposal Posted on July 2, by Karen Kelsky You all know that the book proposal is the cornerstone to a successful tenure track career in .
Avoid the three items you should NEVER include in a fiction book proposal. Convey the “story arc” of your novel in one page and avoid the mistakes typically made by amateurs. Include just enough of your novel to prove that you can write but not so much as to make reading it too daunting.
With a fiction book proposal you will want to focus on plot lines, characters and character development. You will also need to work on making this book proposal exciting, interesting and engaging to get the reader’s potential and show the allure of the finished document.