Good morning everyone!
If you’ve been following my posts, you know I’m sitting on pins and needs waiting for Minotaur and Mystery Writer’s of America to announce this years First Crime Novel Contest winner. Hopefully, I’ll get a book deal from that, but you know how super popular contests are, right? Those super popular contests are all super long-shots. I know that, so I’m doing my best to distract myself with writing my second novel (more on that later).
I’ve also made a contingency plan with my agent. Basically, if the contest doesn’t work out, we’re going on submission, which means book proposals.
So, I’m going to tell all you future author’s out there how to write a book proposal for a fiction novel (nonfiction is way more complicated).
1: Cover Page
The cover page will have the title of your novel as well as all your personal information. You literally need to list every possible way a person could contact you. For that reason, I will NOT be sharing my cover page here. Sorry gang, but you can literally google what a cover page looks like.
2. Table of Contents
This isn’t entirely necessary, actually. Most fiction book proposals consist of a hook and synopsis and sample pages. However, if you’ve won any writing contests you want the publisher to know about, an author’s bio is always helpful. Some publishers also request a comparable titles section and a section about platform and social media. Eventually, all that adds up, and a table of contents can help make your proposal extra user friendly.
Here’ s a picture of my table of contents:
3. Author’s Bio
Again, this is the section that you include if you have some accolades to talk about or if the publisher requests it. If you don’t have enough for this section, don’t worry. Just let your writing speak for itself.
4. Comparable Titles
Not every publisher will ask for these, but they’re always nice to have. I’ve included seven comparable titles, and this section is why you should definitely be well-read in your genre. Here’s an image from my book proposal:
5. Sample Chapters
Every publisher seems to want something different, but many will simply ask for 50 pages. My first 50 pages come out to five chapters. I would share some chapters, but my agent would probably not be happy.
The whole thing should be double-spaced. That’s kind of essential. New chapters should start on a new page.
I hope this has helped someone learn something. Let me know what you think!