October 20, 2019

Building Books with Big Enough Ideas (Writing Tips)

Are your ideas big enough for a book? Or, are they more chapter size? Or, a three-volume set size? Ideas need to fit their container without too much stretching or crimping. I’m a big fan of Oprah’s O Magazine. Its number of pages has grown and shrunk over the past two years. The March 2012 […]

5 Fiction Proposal Writing Frustrations

I speak with many authors each week, often with frustrated ones. Writing a book proposal can be a frustration, especially fiction authors. So how can you keep your head in the game and place your work with a literary agency? Address these head-on. The leading frustration, I think, is having to do the query letter […]

Literary Agent Ted Weinstein on Book Proposals

Ted Weinstein, literary agent, on book proposals Ted Weinstein has done a nice job on this video. His advice, however, applies to nonfiction works. Most authors are surprised, but the US publishing market is about 80 percent nonfiction and only 20 percent fiction. Weinstein focuses on the author selling a proposal to a literary agent, […]

Focus Your Book Proposal with 3 Questions

Have you ever heard (or said), “I know who my readership is, but I am not quite clear on what I want to say to them?” If you are at the planning or proposal stages, and if this is your sentiment, then you may need to do more research on your readership. Working on your […]

Getting Ready to Contact a Literary Agent

When are you ready to contact a literary agent–or a dozen? Usually it’s when your manuscript has been scrutinized by your critique group or a writing coach or experienced book editor, and you have used the extensive notes on each chapter to do a major re-write–or two. Alexander McNabb, in a guest post, details his […]

Non Fiction Book Proposal — Sample Chapter

Tamara Palmer, The Feast, posted an exclusive look into Eddie Huang’s sample chapter of his book proposal. Eddie has just gotten a deal with Random House for his memoir about growing up as a Chinese American. A New York restauranteur, his bun was voted best in 2010. In his memoir, he reveals that his SAT […]

Book Proposal Examples: One of Two Secrets to Getting Published

Julie Coulter Bellon has posted “Two Secrets to Getting Published.” Her two secrets are (1) read more and (2) attend writers’ conferences. She got some push-back from reviewers about how useful these secrets really are. Here I want to explore how these Let’s take a look at her first secret: reading more books. Why would […]

5 For / 3 Against NaNoWriMo? An Author Consultant’s View

Okay, which Is It? Isn’t Maria Beck, The Relaxed Writer, a clever one. She has posted one blog on “3 Reasons You Might Want to Say ‘No!’ to NaNoWriMo” (National Novel Writing Month, which is promoted every November). But before that, she wrote “5 Reasons You Might Have Said ‘Yes!’ to NaNoWriMo.” In baseball and […]