Hello again Christian writers, and thank you for joining me here!

Over the last few weeks we have been looking at what to do with your manuscript before you send it off to an agent or publisher. (Missed previous posts? You can read Wait, Don’t Send it Yet! Part I here and  Part II here.) This week’s post will be the last in the series – today we are going to look at what you need to include in your book proposal. (Do let me know in the comments below if there’s anything you’d like me to cover next!)

mailboxSo, once you have chosen your publisher, what do you need to put in that big scary envelope (or file if you’re sending your proposal via email)? 🙂

  1. The first three chapters of your story
  2. A complete synopsis of the book
  3. A stamped SAE if you’re sending by post and want your manuscript returned
  4. A simple covering letter which needs to include:
  • Who you are writing for (e.g. girls aged 10-14)
  • The final word count
  • Any previous writing experience/qualifications you have
  • A bit about your Christian background
  • Your full name, email address and telephone number.

Your chapters and synopsis need to be typed in a plain font (this isn’t the time to be creative!), on one side of A4 paper with large margins: 3cm is fine. Use one and a half or double line spacing, and number all your pages. It’s useful to have your name and/or the working title of your novel in a header on every page.

Oh, and make sure your manuscript has enough stamps on it – publishers won’t be paying the excess! It’s entirely up to you if you wish to use a signed-for service or go for standard delivery.

Incidentally, this advice goes for pretty much any unsolicited book proposal, so do feel free to email this to friends who might be wondering what to do with their finished manuscript.

I trust you will find this useful – do let me know in the comments below, along with any other writing queries I might be able to help you with.

Janet Wilson, founder of Dernier Publishing and Write for a Reason
Janet Wilson, founder of Dernier Publishing and Write for a Reason

Thank you for joining me, and I look forward to hearing from you!


P.S. In our monthly membership programme we will be looking at ‘Voice’ next – if you think that sounds interesting, we’d love you to join us!

Wait! Don’t send it yet! (Part III – Submitting your ms)
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