Writing a Fiction Book Proposal


Last week, we discussed what a fiction book proposal is, and why you need one. This week, we’ll look at the form and function of a standard fiction book proposal in more detail.

Somewhere in the world, there's a fiction book proposal for each and every one of these... Somewhere in the world, there’s a fiction book proposal for each and every one of these…

In this post, I’ll cover the critical elements of an average but thorough proposal. But keep in mind that each agent and publisher is a special snowflake, and may have variations from the norm in their own requirements. Once you’ve selected the agents/publishers you’ll approach, research that agent’s/publisher’s requirements, standards and procedures.

Industry Standard Fiction Book Proposal Format

While individual agents or publishers might have their own specific requirements, 99.9% of US agents and publishers follow this industry-wide standard for fiction book proposals. These standards have been hallowed by time and consecrated by tradition. Ignore them at your own peril.

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How Not to Organise a Book Launch

Emma Lee's Blog

Close and Lock the Venue

Nothing says “Go Away!” more than a venue that’s not only closed (lights off, no signs of movement inside) but locked shut, unless you also:

Fail to Display Posters

Not only is the venue closed and locked shut but there’s no poster or sign on the door that the event is going ahead. In fact, the whole set-up screams “Cancelled!”

Even if warm and dry, it’s not a good idea to leave your audience hanging around outside, especially if there’s nowhere to sit because some people can’t stand for long.

Don’t tell the Audience which Entrance will be Open

For security or logistics, it might be that only one entrance will be used for the event. However, if the audience is used to all entrances being open or regularly use one of the entrances which will be shut on the night, a poster/sign would help.

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Child versus Pet Loss


What I’m about to write is true, like it or not. Seeing lifelong pets sick and dying is horrible. They are like your own child, and when they die the pain is unbearable and emotions open the floodgates, and you will cry a lot. I had two beloved pet dogs die, one was put down after a horrible accident and this shattered me; she was my pet the most, and I cared for her. My ex put a bullet into my second one – in his head – and fed me lies. I was heart broken.

As a mother, I then found a loss beyond comprehension, beyond comparison, in losing not one, but two children; one who strangled on his umbilical cord, and one with a horrible cancer battle. If you had been me, you would know that this is the absolute King of Loss. There is no comparison, and I pray no one else must feel this true King of Loss.

Fathers who have lost a child also feel this pain, but from a father’s perspective. I pray for those who have lost their lifelong pets who have been their child for such a long time. I pray for parents who have experienced the King of Loss. Ultimately, I pray for no more parents to join us in this damn club we want no part of. Again, only a mother, or a father, of a dead child will know the King of Loss. I’m not diminishing the loss of a beloved pet. 

It’s not a competition. Not at all. I’ve only tried to convey and validate the loss of both. I had a dog growing up. Family dog. I was the one who took care of her needs. She was more of a sibling to me than some of my human siblings. I loved her. When she was put down after an accident, I died inside. I lost my friend, my beautiful cocker spaniel. That pain is still with me today.

This entry was posted on June 20, 2017. 5 Comments



Winners’ Circle – Joy Lo-Bamijoko

June 17, 2017

Welcome to the Winner’s Circle where we celebrate the success of our ICL students. Today we are celebrating published author Joy Lo-Bamijoko!

What is the name of your book? Who is the publisher?
Mirror of Our Lives: Voices of Four Igbo Women,iUniverse

Legend of the Walking Dead: Igbo Mythologies,Sbpra Publishers

Pregnant Future,self-published

Tell us a bit about your path to publishing, from idea to submission to published book.

I am primarily an Indie author. I chose to go this path because I had so many rejections in trying to have one of my books published that I decided that if I have a story, I want to tell it and I want it to be read. So, I put that book aside and started writing memoirs. My first and third books are memoirs, but the second is a fiction.

After writing…

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This entry was posted on June 19, 2017. 2 Comments

FREE eBook New Release – Grab Yours!


Shadow and Friends Celebrate Ellsworth, KS 150th Birthday

This is Book Seven in our Shadow and Friends Series – New and FREE eBook June 20th – June 24th

Gets Yours Right Here!

In this children’s picture book and seventh book in our ‘Shadow and Friends Series’, Shadow and Friends Celebrate Ellsworth, KS, 150th Birthday, two dogs and a family of squirrels decide to help Ellsworth celebrate the 150th birthday of the town’s history. This book coincides with the actual 150th birthday of Ellsworth in the summer of 2017. Illustrations are found on each page, most of them painted. Big Whitey tells the history of Ellsworth, and Fort Harker, with historical buildings, notable landmarks, and scenes painted by the author. At the end of this story, Little Whitey asks his father if they can re-enact the old west, dress like cowboys, and do a pretend cattle drive just like Ellsworth, KS. The squirrels dress in cowboy and cowgirl gear, and they even have a chuck wagon cook. They herd longhorn cattle, sing the state song of Kansas, and have lots of fun during their re-enactment. At the end of the story, they enjoyed a barn dance, celebrated the 150th birthday of Ellsworth, and Uncle Stubby took pictures and ‘selfies’. Children will love seeing the old west come alive with two dogs and a family of squirrels dressed in western attire, and using a small amount of cowboy slang. This delightful and funny book for children, targeted at ages 4-8, is easy to read and perfect for home or classroom. The story illustrates how cattle drives worked, the long dusty trails, life in the old west, and illustrations that produce pure imagination in children. Note: Actual gunfights and ‘adult type’ history were left out in this wild western history of Ellsworth, KS. 

Shadow and Friends Celebrate Ellsworth, KS, 150th Birthday” is a wonderful and fun children’s book that both children and adults will enjoy. The story hits the targeted age range of 4–8. The painted illustrations provided are a delight, and my grandchildren loved them. Who would have thought to write a book using dogs and squirrels as friends, and the old west thrown in? This book is perfect for home, schools, and libraries. I highly recommend this book.”  ~ Susan Vance, Author and Realtor

Four Lessons I Learned From Giving My Novel Away

A Writer's Path

by J.U. Scribe

My free book promotion for Before the Legend is officially over as of this week. What was supposed to be a “Free Promo Week” turned more into a month long promo filled with free print giveaways, author interviews, guest spotlights, and of course free eBooks! It was encouraging seeing a significant jump in readers adding my books to their virtual shelves in Goodreads, to new reviews being added on Goodreads and Amazon.

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