If you are a traditional publishing holdout, a nonfiction writer who sees the benefits of having their work produced by a publishing house, who does not want to become a self-publisher (for any number of reasons) or who simply has always dreamed of receiving a contract and advance for your book, you will need a book proposal. Without a book propoposal you cannot sell your book to a publishing house, nor can you land literary representation. And, you will need literary representation—an agent—if you want to approach a mid-sized or large publishing house.
I read a lot of proposals. Their pages tend to be devoid of the necessary information, the required sections, good writing, and a full understanding of the purpose the document serves. Often the writer prepares the proposal long after having pitched a nonfiction book to an agent at a conference or via a query letter. If the writer then receives a request for a proposal, he or she is faced with the need to produce a proposal in a matter of weeks—or make the agent wait. In most cases, the writer make the agent wait not just weeks but months. That’s a big “misteak,” as literary agent and expert guest blogger Michael Larsen would say.
Today Michael offers us 13 book proposal misteaks that might ensure your idea never makes it onto bookstore shelves—at least not as a traditionally published book. If you want an agent and a publisher not only to read your proposal but to purchase the book it describes and publish it, avoid these misteaks at all costs. Read the post by clicking here.
(Please note: This month, Write Nonfiction NOW! features 30 days of posts from its sister blog, Write Nonfiction in November. Access them by clicking on the link above.)
Register for the second WNFIN FREE teleseminar, ”Fans, Followers and Friends: How Authors Can Maximize and Monetize Social Media,” with Penny C Sansevieri, author of Red Hot Internet Publicity! It’s a must-attend event on Wed., November 16 at 2:30 p.m. PST/5:30 p.m. EST. To register, click here.