Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Writing Biographies for a Publisher

Major publishers of biographies hire writers to research and write biographies. You can search them out, or they may contact you with an offer, and may ask for a book proposal with an annotated outline, ie: a chapter-by-chapter outline of book.

You can get lots of information on how to do a annotated outline by Googling.

In addition, Jeannette de Beauvoir, novelist, playwright, short story writer and poet, provides the following insight.
"Be very careful about how long writing a biography will take you, it's one of the services I offer authors and is expensive precisely because it's so involved. Budget *plenty* of time for it!"
At a minimum, your proposal should include:

1) title page
2) table of contents and summary of the proposal
3) overview/synopsis
4) audience (detail who is going to buy it and why)
5) competitive review (what other similar books are out there and how well they've sold; how yours is different)
6) author platform (why are you the person to write it; what reader will you be bringing with you)
7) marketing (a very detailed listing of what exactly you will do to market the book apart from anything your publisher will do)
8) chapter-by-chapter outline of book (this is your annotated outline)
9) first three finished & edited chapters

Good luck!
--  Jeannette

Her poem, "The William Dutton House, Circa 1835" was published in the August 2013 inaugural issue of Agave Magazine.

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