Book Proposal Working Group

CFDE and Office of Scholarly Communications Convene Fall 2023 Book Proposal Working Group

WAIT LIST ONLY. Please complete the registration form, and we will reach out as spots open. 


John Morgenstern, Office of Scholarly Communications, Woodruff Library

Allison Adams, Center for Faculty Development and Excellence

Faculty at any career stage are invited to participate in a semester-long, eight-session, interactive working group designed to support the development of an effective book proposal. Led by publishing experts, the working group will offer insider perspective on how to appeal to acquisitions editors and avoid red flags. Participants will be guided through a structured program of drafting, feedback, and revision ultimately resulting in a full proposal tailored for their preferred publisher.

The working group will meet in person in the CFDE every other Tuesday from 12:00 to 1:30 (drinks provided -- feel free to bring your lunch!), beginning September 5.

Participants will be expected to draft one or two sections of their proposal in advance of most sessions (no more than 1000 words). Sessions will be devoted to workshopping and refining proposal drafts, learning the etiquette for approaching publishers, navigating the peer review process, and what to expect in a book contract. 

Register by August 25, 2023.

Register at this link

Session 1

(September 5, 2023)

  • introductions
  • the elements of a standard book proposal
  • the value and uses of proposals for authors and publishers

Preparation: Read sample proposal and bring questions about book proposals and the workshop 

Session 2

(September 19, 2023) 

  • finding the right publisher
  • workshop detailed book synopsis
  • guidance on competing titles

Preparation: draft detailed book synopsis in advance (no more than 800 words)

Session 3

(October 3, 2023)

  • making the initial pitch
  • workshop competing titles
  • guidance on audience (section explaining the need for your book)

Preparation: draft competing titles section (no more than 800 words)

Session 4

(October 17, 2023)

  • peer review process and develop list of prospective readers
  • workshop audience
  • guidance on chapter-level synopses

Preparation: draft audience (no more than 400 words)

Session 5

(October 31, 2023)

  • marketing as shared enterprise
  • workshop chapter-level synopses
  • guidance on marketing and key features

Preparation: draft chapter-level synopses (no more than 1000 words)

Session 6

(November 14, 2023)

  • copyright considerations for third-party materials
  • workshop marketing and key features
  • guidance on professional biographies, titles, and third-party materials

Preparation: draft marketing and key features (no more than 500 words)

Session 7

(November 28, 2023)

  • workshop professional biography, titles, and explanation of third-party materials
  • guidance on word counts, timelines, and other details

Preparation: draft professional biography, titles, and explanation of third-party materials

Session 8

(December 12, 2023)

  • what to expect in a book contract
  • workshop complete proposals

Preparation: assemble all the draft sections and revise full proposal based on feedback throughout workshop 

Register at this link

Registration deadline: August 25, 2023

Please direct questions to Allison Adams,