I spoke to a new author today about her new book and I was having the hardest time explaining the importance of having a book proposal. She was under the misguided notion that if she wrote her book, she could just pitch the book without an agent and reach out to publishers herself. She’s right, she could do it that way, but will she have success? Her odds of finding a publisher without a proposal or an agent are sadly slim to none. I believe in being transparent with all potential clients, so I informed her of all the intricacies of having a book proposal. Hopefully, she will heed my advice.
This got my mind spinning…
It seems book proposals are a significant mystery, yet I know the extreme importance of having one for your book career. And make no mistake, a book proposal is as important or more so than your book if you hope to sell it to a major publisher. The writing of a selling book proposal needs to begin with, being well written, thoroughly researched, and professionally put together.
I am approached daily by new authors, and ultimately, one of the main questions I receive is if they need a book proposal? I thought it would be a good idea to write about it and briefly answer this most important sought-out question— Do I need a book proposal? So, to get started on the right foot, I felt it necessary to explain not only what a book proposal is, but the primary reason behind writing one.
Let’s begin by asking the question:
What exactly is a book proposal?
The answer? A book proposal is a necessary tool to get your book bought, sold, and acquired by any major publisher of your choosing. The proposal contains specific sections, much like a business plan that you, the author, must input to sell your book. A skilled ghostwriter can assist you in writing a successful book proposal, and I consider book proposal writing an essential aspect of my ghostwriting career.
A book proposal’s primary purpose is to sell your book idea to major publishers through a literary agency. So, a book proposal can also be used to garner the attention of prospective literary agents for possible book representation. Before I go further, there is a misnomer among the publishing industry where the authors believe they can sell books without a concise book proposal. I am here to put an end to this line of thinking. This is a fact—when attempting to acquire a major publishing deal, a book proposal is critical and— THE only way to obtain a major publishing deal. I learned this first-hand when I spoke to an extremely high-profile music artist (name withheld) about his new book. Myself, my agent, and the author had a conference call and the high-profile music artist, was under the impression that all my agent had to do was make a few phone calls, and he could get a publishing deal. He thought, because of his name, his previous book experience, and who he was, it would be a simple task.
He was wrong.
My agent stopped him in the tracks, and said, “I have been in the publishing industry or over 35 years, and the publishing industry has drastically changed. Gone are the days where you can sell a book with only a phone call. Today, it doesn’t matter who you are, a book proposal is a sheer necessity—and damn near mandatory.”
It is evident that times and things have changed in the publishing industry. What used to be the normal publishing standards that were complacent, predictable, and comfortable have now altered to meet the demands of the book-buying landscape. Literary agents, editors, and publishers across the nation now understand that publishing a book today is now a different picture than it was a few years ago. The varying changes include the digital age and the merging parts of the industry-changing how books are published, garnered, produced, and sold. The impact of these changes is apparent across the book publishing industry. Still, there are numerous inconsistencies across the publishing industry with misguided and confusing information, sending most new writers fleeing with their heads spinning.
The Self-publishing arena has exploded and has given rise to many new authors, all of which have followed their own personal book writing path. Many new authors self-publish and have great careers, yet, it is not easy by any stretch of the imagination.
However, when it comes to book publishing, the playing field is level, equal, and everyone starts at the same point—writing a book and a book proposal—essential tasks that must be done. So, remember book proposals are a mandated element, necessary in all regards to securing a book publication deal.
Are you Fortune 500 executive, Business leader, Coach, Corporate entity, CEO, or small business entrepreneur and need guidance or advice on your book and writing a possible book proposal? If you are interested in learning more about the process, please schedule a book consultation with me at https://ghostwritingusa.com/contact. Or email me with any questions at firstname.lastname@example.org. I’d love to learn more about how I can help.