Ah, it’s March. And that makes me think of spring (it’s firmly spring here), basketball, green beer, and book proposals.
Okay, so March doesn’t inherently make me think of book proposals. I’m not sure any time of year particularly inspires that line of thought. And frankly as a children’s book editor of fiction books, book proposals rarely cross my mind at all. After all, you will rarely need to write out a book proposal for a fiction book, and there are many well-established children’s authors who have never written one at all.
And that, my friends, is a shame.
A book proposal is one of the best ways to get to know your book, I mean really get to know your book. An invite-your-book-back-to-your-place-for-a-drink kind of way to know your book. To “know” it in the “biblical” sense. By the time you have finished every section of a book proposal, there’s not much about your book you haven’t considered. And looking at your book in this kind of detail can only help you make it stronger.
Besides, a book proposal is the perfect project while waiting to hear back from critiquers with your first draft. It allows you to continue working on your current project without obsessively revising. (Remember what I said about over-revising yesterday?)
So, I propose that we spend this glorious month of March dedicated to all things book proposals. We will discuss every aspect of the proposal, we will practice proposals, and in the end we will have a grand contest (details of which I have not thought out yet, only just now having had this scathingly brilliant idea) with 5 Grand Prize winners recieving the chance to submit their book proposals to me for critiquing and to CBAY for official consideration. (In other words you’ll submit to CBAY, and if I reject the project, I’ll provide feedback.)
May be excerpted and duplicated for educational purposes.