Preparing a Proposal

So that we can assess the suitability of your idea for our list of publications, we need you to send us a formal proposal. The proposal should outline your idea and provide the details we need to obtain feedback from referees and make a decision about investing resources in the project.

The details you should provide for a new book proposal are given below. If your proposal is for an electronic product rather than a book, please discuss your idea with one of our Publishers.

What to include in a book proposal

We recommend you include the following:

1. Overview
  • Give your suggested title and (if applicable) subtitle
  • Describe the project, its purpose and what is distinctive about it. Give an overview of the scope and the key features (provide about 250 words)
  • Why is there a need for this book?
  • What are the key benefits that it will provide to readers?
2. About the author(s)/editorial team
  • Who are the proposed authors and why are they best qualified to write this book? For each, please give name, title, current affiliation and contact details (including email), a 50-word biography and details of any previous publications relevant to this proposal
  • For multi-contributed projects, please give the above information for the editors, along with the names and affiliations of all contributors
3. Contents

Provide a detailed draft table of contents. Under each chapter heading, give a few sentences describing the material to be covered.

4. Readership
  • Describe your intended readership as specifically as possible. What readership level is it aimed at (eg postgraduate, undergraduate, senior high school) and in what fields
  • What secondary audiences might also find this book of interest? What courses might it be used for (if applicable)?
  • What would you estimate is the size of the readership for your book?
  • Please list (in order of importance) the countries in which major sales of your book might be expected
5. Competing works
  • Give details of any publications that are similar to or may compete with the book you are proposing. Please list title, author, price and publisher of these works if possible
  • Explain what your book offers that is different and how your book will be superior to these other publications
6. New editions

If you are proposing a new edition of an existing or out-of-print publication, please provide details of:

  • the previous edition, including retail price(s), number of pages, year of publication, quantity printed and number sold
  • how this new edition will differ from the previous edition
  • the nature and amount of new material that will be provided
7. Specifications
  • Estimate the size of the book (as a guide, use 400 words per page and allow a third of a page on average for illustrations)
  • Estimate the number of illustrations and specify if they are:
    -  diagrams, line drawings, graphs, photographs etc
    -  in black and white or in colour (please give numbers of each). As colour printing is expensive, you should specify why any such material needs to be in colour
  • What is the current status of the manuscript? Give a realistic date for the delivery of the final manuscript
8. Marketing opportunities
  • What industry bodies, professional organisations or societies could be targeted when promoting your book?
  • Which journals might be appropriate for advertising or might carry reviews?
  • What forthcoming conferences or meetings may be good opportunities for promotion?
  • If you have access to relevant mailing lists, please give approximate numbers for each
9. Referees

Provide details of two independent referees who might be suitable to review your proposal. We may also choose to use referees of our own.

How to submit your proposal

Please submit your proposal by email or post. There is no need to send an entire manuscript - a well-prepared proposal and, if you have them, two sample chapters, will give us the information we need at this stage.