Getting a book to publication stage requires a substantial commitment of time and investment of resources. If you are serious about wanting to be an author, please know that there is a process, and a formula for book proposals that publishers and editors have come to expect.
I can guide you through this process. I work with a number of top New York literary agents and, if we think your book has a shot at getting picked up by a major publishing house, it likely will. But we are professionals, and these services are not free.
A book proposal is a lengthy document that includes an overview, an author’s bio, a marketing plan, an intro, chapter summaries, and at least one sample chapter. It can take several weeks to put this together, and it involves an intense amount of effort. We are basically breaking the back of the book as we put together your thoughts and outline. But the upside is that by the time it is done, about the third of it will have been written and you will be off to a solid start.
Top writers charge fees in the low five-figures for the full proposal. I leave it to my representatives to discuss specific numbers, but it’s a necessary upfront investment that not only determines whether you will get a deal, but the size and terms of that advance.
If the book sells, I am also paid a writer’s fee, which can be based upon a percentage, a fixed amount, or both. The agent will also take his or her 15% off of all monies earned from the project, per the industry standard. I never get into the financial details of a book project directly with clients. These negotiations are between you and the literary agent. In the event that you decide to self-publish, it is always a fixed fee, and there are many top agents who can shepherd you through that process as well. Again, it won’t be cheap, but remember, this is your legacy. You get what you pay for.
Once the book has been greenlit, the process is as collaborative as you wish it to be. We will have extended conversations, enabling me to gather the raw data that I will structure around the themes and narratives we outlined in the proposal. A few of my authors, when their time permits, like to be hands on. Most prefer to review at various stages of completion, when they will give me their editorial feedback. I will then incorporate any changes or additions as we continue to shape the masterpiece. Either way, I make it my mission to ensure that you enjoy the journey.