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The Book Proposal Accelerator is now open for enrollment
This post answers your questions
It’s the most anticipated day of the year at Manuscript Works HQ — the Book Proposal Accelerator is now enrolling a new cohort!
You can click that button above if you want to find out more about the Book Proposal Accelerator and sign up.
If you already know you want to register, you can skip the scrolling on the registration page and just use the direct checkout links right here:
Enrollment will remain open until the program fills up, but anyone who signs up today (May 31st) will get complimentary access to the recording of my Write an Outstanding Book Proposal workshop, which you’ll be able to watch right away to get a jump start on your proposal before the Accelerator begins on July 1. (If you already attended the workshop, your registration fee for the workshop will be refunded, as long as you sign up for the Accelerator today.)
All who enroll in this year’s Accelerator will also receive a complimentary ebook copy of The Book Proposal Book. Look for instructions in your welcome email after you register.
If you’ve already read the registration page and still have questions about whether the Book Proposal Accelerator is the right fit for you, check out the FAQ below or reply to this email to ask me directly.
Book Proposal Accelerator FAQ
Is the Accelerator only for first books and early career scholars?
The Accelerator is for any scholar who wants a structured plan and feedback on their next book proposal. I have worked with scholars at all career stages, including many experienced authors who are looking for a greater sense of confidence and control in their publishing process after having disappointing experiences earlier in their careers.
The Accelerator was designed with scholars and scholarly publishers in mind. In addition to traditionally employed academics, I welcome independent scholars, scholars working outside of academia, and the contingently employed (and offer a significant discount for those without institutional funding).
If you’re not sure whether you are writing a scholarly book or targeting scholarly publishers, I encourage you to get in touch directly to tell me about yourself and your project so I can let you know if the Accelerator is a good fit for you.
Can I join if I don’t have a draft of my proposal yet? What if I already have my proposal fully drafted?
The Accelerator is designed to guide you through drafting your proposal, so you don’t need a draft in hand yet. However, if you do have a draft already, the Accelerator offers a great system for revising it efficiently and getting quick feedback so you can feel really good about sending it out to publishers.
How much of my book should be written before I join the Accelerator?
You can be at any point in your manuscript writing process when participating in the Accelerator. Some people use the program to plan a book that isn’t yet drafted, whereas others use it as a last step before sending materials out to publishers (and plenty of people are in between those two points). You should have some sense of your book’s argument and chapter structure before enrolling in the Accelerator, but you may also use the program to hash out some of those aspects of your book if you aren’t completely sure yet.
I don’t recommend the Accelerator for doctoral students or candidates who have not yet completed their dissertations. I believe you will be in a much better position to plan and pitch your book if you have gotten some distance from the dissertation first.
What if I have other big stuff going on this summer, like a move or a new job? Will I have time to complete the Accelerator with everything else I’m doing?
You’ll see the quickest results if you’re able to devote several hours per week to working on your book proposal, but your degree of active participation in the Accelerator is totally up to you. Many participants want to take advantage of the opportunity to post drafts for feedback, attend the live Q&As, and connect with other members of the cohort, but these are all optional aspects of the Accelerator.
The Q&As are recorded, and you’ll be able to post drafts for feedback through November if you find yourself too busy to keep up this summer. If none of those interactive aspects of the Accelerator that I mentioned in the previous paragraph interest you, you may want to check out my self-paced Book Proposal Shortcut instead.
If you need help determining how much time you really have to devote to your book proposal this summer, I recommend Jo Van Every’s Planning Your Academic Writing Year class happening this Friday.
I don’t offer refunds or postponements on Accelerator enrollments, so I do want you to be sure the timing is right for you before you sign up. That said, you will keep access to the Accelerator materials forever, so even if you are unexpectedly unable to participate as actively as you’d like, you’ll still be able to use the curriculum on your own in the future to develop your proposal.
The curriculum for both online programs takes the principles from The Book Proposal Book and puts them into a course-like structure, allowing you to proceed step-by-step through the process of writing the proposal. The curriculum also highlights the most important information from the book and draws your attention to elements that I’ve seen proposal-writers often miss when writing their drafts. The idea is to save you time and take the guesswork out of writing your proposal from start to finish.
Both online programs include a resources library with many additional successful proposal examples not included in the book and a complete set of worksheets to support the program curriculum.
Unlike the Accelerator, the Shortcut is an independent, self-paced program. Participants do not interact with each other or receive feedback from me. The core material is the same between the Accelerator and the Shortcut, but the Accelerator is a cohort-based experience where you benefit from direct feedback from me and from seeing what other people produce and how I respond to them. Past participants have found this aspect of the Accelerator particularly valuable.
As a Shortcut participant, you would have the opportunity to post questions that I will answer directly, and to attend periodic live Q&As throughout the year, but I will not read your work and offer feedback on it as I do in the Accelerator.
What’s the deadline to sign up?
I will close enrollment once the program reaches capacity. In the past, the Accelerator has filled up within one hour of enrollment opening. Sometimes it takes a few weeks to fill up. I can’t predict it in advance, so I suggest that if you know you want to sign up, do so as soon as possible.
The reason the Accelerator has an enrollment cap is that I give personalized feedback to all participants who want it. As you work through the modules of the program to generate the components of your book proposal, you are encouraged to post your work in the group platform. I respond promptly to every post, identifying the strengths I see and offering constructive suggestions for revision if necessary. Because there’s only one of me, I am only able to provide feedback to a finite number of people, hence the need for a cap.
Any questions I didn’t answer? Reply to this email and let me know how I can help!