The Key Components of the Scholarly Book Proposal

The book prospectus is the main document you'll be working on in this program. It's the thing that describes your book and is the centerpiece of your proposal package (which will likely also include a CV and writing sample).

There's no one correct format to follow when it comes to your book prospectus. If your target press has a template or list of sections they want you to include, then follow their instructions. If you don't know which publishers you plan to target yet and just want to work up a general draft for now, these are the elements you should plan to include:

• A working title

• An overview of the book (sometimes called a "project description")

• A description of the intended audience(s) for the book

• A list of comparable books on the market

• A complete table of contents plus chapter summaries

• Manuscript specifications (such as word count and illustrations)

• The current status of the manuscript

• Information about your qualifications as an author

As you work through the Shortcut modules, you will be filling in each of these components (but not necessarily in the order I just listed). In the modules I'll tell you what purposes each element serves and which readers you should be thinking about as you craft that element. That information is also presented in abbreviated form in the PDF below which you can download or print for your reference.

Manuscript Works - Key Components of a Scholarly Book Proposal.pdf
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