The Book Proposal July 1, 2009

The Book Proposal

For a few weeks now, I’ve been working fairly intensely on a book idea. I haven’t talked about it on this site yet, but if it works out, you’ll hear more soon enough.

The other day, I finally sent it off to an editor interested in looking at it. It’ll take some time before I hear back. If it works out, I dance. If not, I can try taking it to other people. It’s potentially a very long process, that can lead to a ginormous number of email rejections.

I Sold My Soul on eBay didn’t work the same way. The publishers came to me after seeing all the publicity from the eBay auction and asked me to write the book. They essentially took care of the hardest part about getting published — getting someone interested in your work.

Now, with this book, I don’t have that same opportunity. It’s just me on my own, trying to generate interest in an idea I’m really excited about. It’s much harder but I do have a few connections of which I can try to make use.

For anyone interested, the proposal itself included: a potential title/subtitle, a lengthy outline of the entire book (what each chapter would look like), a description of the target audiences, a list of reasons why the book would sell 239842323 copies, an explanation of why I need to be the person that writes this book, a list of my media appearances and speaking engagements, a list of books similar in topic/nature that have fared well, and the sales history of my last book.

I also included a sample chapter (slightly over 7,000 words) that can later be expanded upon if needed. I’m not sure if this is how other authors do it, but it was the recommendation given to me by a trusted friend.

Now, it’s up to the corporate overlords. We’ll see what happens.

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  • Another Atheist

    Good luck!

  • Karlover

    Awesome. Just be sure to give us all plenty of notice when you appear on The Colbert Report in 2011 to promote the book.

  • mikespeir

    What’s it about? C’mon, give us a hint. I promise I probably won’t steal your idea.

  • If you don’t have any luck elsewhere, my company will gladly publish your book.

    Of course you should probably try for the “big” publishers first, but we’re here as a last resort!

  • Kelly

    Best of luck!

  • Nick Wallin

    Good luck!

  • Chris

    Good luck!

  • Ron in Houston

    Don’t want to be a fly in the ointment, but it seems I remember reports about things being really tough in the publishing business.

    Your first book was sort of target marketed maybe you can do the same thing again.

    Maybe you can get the folks at the Food Network interested in baby recipies.

  • Good luck!

    I’ll pray for you. *snicker*


  • Rob

    Just post the email addresses of the publishers you submit to on your blog. We’ll all mass email them in support!

  • Good luck.

    Whenever it is appropriate, we all would love to learn a bit more about your book project.

  • Emily

    Best of luck!

  • SarahH

    Good luck!

    Do they have your picture? Being dashingly handsome should work in your favor. Colbert might not have you on – I don’t know how much he likes the competition 😛

  • marfita

    I worked for a literary agent in NYC decades ago and what you are describing is the standard she required. If you already have an editor, then you are in good form, since that seems to be the most recent requirement. The agent I worked for so long ago would provide even ghostwriters if she thought the concept worthy. She would then shop it to the publishing houses. She died years ago and while her agency lives on, I no longer have contact.

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