10-second review: What to include in a nonfiction book proposal.
Title: “The Motion of A Notion: How I Sold My Nonfiction Book Idea with A Successful Book Proposal.” The Writer (September 2009), 36-37. The Writer is a magazine by writers for writers.
Summary: “A nonfiction book proposal is a marketing document that sells a nonfiction book to a publisher: What the book is about. Why an author is qualified to write it. Who the audience is. Where the book fits in the field. How the author will promote it. It also includes a detailed outline and one to three sample chapters…. You usually have to write some of the actual book…. Virtually all nonfiction books are sold by proposal.” p. 37.
Comment: Providing the sample chapters also prevents unscrupulous publishers from stealing your idea and letting someone else write it. You can’t copyright ideas. The sample chapters demonstrate that the book exists in progress. I wish I had gone through those steps before self-publishing my book. I might have found a publisher. RayS.