Submissions and surprises: the Monsters volume

T’is the season for surprises. This week I got one of the best surprises you can get: a book contract for a project I had *kind-of* forgotten about. Now, don’t get me wrong. I think the book, on Monsters, is a great project. I love everything about it. However, I had submitted the proposal a few months ago. And then life happened. Well, you probably know all about it…

About book proposals

For those of you who don’t know, there’s a pretty standard process you need to go through if you want to find a publisher for your academic book. You go to their website, you see what their submission guidelines are… And then you write a proposal based on their guidelines. That’s the easy part. Now, the more difficult aspect is getting the proposal just right. And I know that this is the part people struggle with most, because I started a business where I help people write their proposals. For more on my proposal work with Passionate Writer Coaching, see here

Now, a book proposal is not that different from a business proposal. Printing and marketing a book costs money. So your proposal is designed to convince a publisher your book will sell. You entice them to invest money by convincing them that they will make a profit. Pretty simple right? 

Monsters and the Monstrous

And that brings us to the Monsters project. Months ago, I wrote a proposal for an edited volume on Monsters, subtitled: Gender, Murder and Domesticity. Sounds pretty cool right? The one-line summary reads: “This volume brings authors from a variety of disciplines in dialogue with each other, about the things monstrous representations can teach us about our own socio-political and psycho-emotional realities.”

 I found nine people who wanted to write a chapter for this book, framed the chapters and sent off the proposal. And then I forgot about it while I was working on other projects. Until, suddenly, I received a contract offer!

Now, books are slow beasts. Now that the contract is in, we can start working on the chapters. And once they’re in, I’ll have to edit them. And then we’ll have to send them to the publisher. Who’ll need an additional six months to get the book ready and printed. This means that the book itself won’t be out until June 2022. But that’s okay. I’ll just have to keep you updated in the meantime!