Tag s | book proposals

The Twelve Statements Before Christmas

I pondered whether I should write this post in verse to the tune of The Twelve Days of Christmas, but since there would be a lot of copy/paste activity involved, I didn’t feel like readers would get their money’s worth.

Instead, I’ll do this in simple list form, focusing on twelve statements from 2017, which left me speechless. And if you knew me personally, you would know there are very few things which leave me speechless…utterly, without a thought to express in response.

So here they are, the twelve that silenced me:

  1. “How can you say an average family has 1.7 children? We are average and have three!” (Has nothing to do with publishing, but it still stumped me.)
  2. “I don’t care if I ever make a dime on this book, I just want it published.”
  3. “Do you think 500,000 words is too long for a memoir?”
  4. “You know, it’s funny, I realized when I started writing my book that I don’t even like to read books!”
  5. “There’s no need for me to get any training about writing, I’ll just start writing and God will give me the words.”
  6. “I self-published my book on Amazon and haven’t sold any copies in two years, so I thought I would try the traditional publishing route. Could I get a $50,000 advance? I have a lot of bills.”
  7. “I know they tell us to have something prepared for meetings at this conference, but I would rather take my 15 minutes and just tell you about my idea. I was born in 1963…”
  8. “Please consider this proposal as soon as possible, I need the book published in the next few weeks.”
  9. “If you don’t like this idea, then please tell me what I should write about to be a successful author.”
  10. “I have had five previous agents and they all failed to get me published, so I thought I would try you.”
  11. “Do I need to pay taxes on any money I earn from writing?”
  12. “Do they have the new Nacho-flavor Cheez-its in any stores near Chicago?” (Asked by Steve Laube…who doesn’t like anything Nacho-flavored.)

Feliz Navidad, próspero año y felicidad



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Yes, It’s Personal

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Books are Sold with Proposals

If you think about it, the first step leading to the eventual sale of any book begins with grabbing someone’s attention with a short description of the book content. The proposal or short description motivates the agent, publisher, book retailer or reader to take the next step, which is different …

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Make Me Jump off the Fence

So, when querying me, maybe you followed my guidelines, submitted an appropriate manuscript, and your work has much to recommend itself. So why am I not getting back to you right away? Am I ignoring you? I’m sure it feels that way, and I’m sorry. What has probably happened is …

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Where Do You Find New Clients?

“As an agent, what percentage of your new clients come from meetings at conferences vs. general email or postal proposals? Can you address the importance of conferences?” Thanks to Scott for the question. It is a good one. Another way to frame it is “Where do you find new clients? …

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