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        How to Write a Book Proposal (7 Tips + Free Template)

        • calenderJan 23, 2024
        • calender 5 min read

        Do you want the best publishers to take notice of your book? An attractive book proposal will impress publishers and pave the way for faster publication. In this article, we’ve explained the important elements of a book proposal. We’ve also given 7 practical tips to create an engaging book proposal. 

        Take the first step to publish your book now!

        So without wasting time, let’s start with the basics! 

        What is a book proposal? 

        A book proposal is a detailed document that authors create to present their book idea to potential publishers. An attractive book proposal helps to persuade publishers of the book’s potential for success. 

        What to include in a book proposal? 

        • Title page- This consists of the title, subtitle, author’s name, contact information, and date. 
        • Book overview- This includes the book’s title and a summary of what the book is about. The book summary is generally between 200-500 words. 
        • Author bio- A brief account of the author’s background, contact information, experience, and qualifications is included in this section. If you have previously published any books, you can also add them to your bio. An author bio generally ranges from 100-250 words. 
        • Chapter outline- Publishers might ask you to briefly summarize chapters in 2-3 sentences. 
        • Table of contents- This consists of a list of the chapter titles to help the publishers understand the content flow. 
        • Sample chapters- Many publishers ask authors to give 1-5 sample chapters to understand the book’s sellability.  
        • Marketing plan: This is an optional step. You can include any strategies to promote your book. This will help the publisher get clarity about your book. 
        • Target audience- Your book proposal must reflect the potential readers of your book. This refers to your audience’s age, gender, socio-cultural background, interests, and reading background. Touching upon these aspects in your book proposal will help publishers gauge your book’s profitability. 
        • Additional details- You can also add details such as a list of 5 books published on the same topic and how your book stands out. You can also add any illustrations your book has (optional, if required). With this, you can also add your Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, website, and blog links. 

        How to write a book proposal 

        Here are 7 tips for writing an attractive book proposal: 

        1. Write an engaging title- Your book’s title must reflect your book’s content and themes. Some ways to create an attractive title are: Use alliteration (example: Gone Girl), use vivid language (example: Fury of a Phoenix), use metaphors (example: Invisible Man ), or use a unique character name as the title (example: Frankenstein). 
        2. Include a strong hook- While writing the book summary begin with an opening sentence that intrigues readers. You can start with a compelling question, highlight a conflict, mystery, or tough choices that a character must make. Showcase the high stakes and challenges the protagonist must face. 
        3. Add endorsements from influencers- If your book has received positive reviews from popular influencers, you can add it to your book proposal. Also, you can give information about any influencers who will be willing to write a foreword or rate your book. 
        4. Highlight your book’s USP- A book’s USP (Unique Selling Point)  can be the book’s message, writing style, story structure, unexplored topic, interesting twist on a common theme, emotional impact, themes, or message. Highlighting the book’s unique elements through the book summary and chapters can help to secure a good publishing deal. 
        5. Mention your platform and reach– If you already have an established audience for your book, mentioning this can strengthen your proposal. Including the number of followers and subscribers on social media, and highlighting your past collaborations and successful promotions can help to successfully pitch your book. 
        6. Edit and format your book proposal- Ensure that your book proposal is well-edited. Check the content for grammatical errors, word choice errors, and typos. Make sure that the book proposal format (including the sample chapter file format) is as per the publishing company’s guidelines. 
        7. Showcase your book’s relevance- This refers to your opinion about why you think it is the right time for your book to be published. If you think that the book’s story reflects the current trends or fills a gap in the market (an unexplored topic), you can highlight this in your proposal. 

        Let us see a book proposal example to understand these tips better! 

        Book proposal example

        This example is a book proposal sample of Jane Austen’s novel Pride and Prejudice

        Book proposal of Pride and Prejudice sample

        Note: Proposals can vary, depending on the requirements of the literary agent or publisher. This is just a sample book proposal of how Austen could promote her book in 2024. 

        Book proposal template

        This template includes important elements of a book proposal such as the book overview, target audience, marketing and promotion strategies, and more. You can refer to the structure in this template while creating your book proposal.  

        Book Proposal Template

        Now that you know how to write a book proposal, you can begin your publishing journey. For readers wondering about how to write a non-fiction book proposal, these steps remain the same. As experts in self-publishing services, we’d love to perfect your book proposal. We also provide services like creating an author bio, writing a query letter, and an engaging book summary. Feel free to reach out to get your book proposal refined by experts! 

        Here are some other articles you might find useful: 

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        Priya Linkedin

        Priya has a talent for academic research and enjoys simplifying complex topics. When she's not helping students improve their writing, she can be seen reading poetry, playing the harmonium, or learning classical dance.

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