Susan Ferber, executive editor at Oxford University Press, listed concrete steps to preparing the book proposal, reassuring us that “proposals are one thing that are doable within the next 35 days.” The proposal needs to convey the best version of the project, and yourself, while also giving you “the chance to see the big picture” for your own project. It can serve as an outline and motivator in getting your project done.
Finally, Ulrich Baer wrapped the remarks with a timely metaphor for the faculty and instructors in the room: treat writing like you would teaching a class. You prepare in advance and don’t cancel a class because a friend happens to be in town. During class, you don’t have your phone notifications visible, and you aren’t checking emails. Hold yourself accountable in your writing by talking to other people, in brief terms, about your writing project.
Questions from the audience ranged from how best to take notes during the research phase to negotiating a book contract. Listen to the full event below: