9.23.2005

Animal Vegetable or Mineral?

A Snarkling wonders:

Dear Miss Snark:

Since you mention Mikal Gilmore's book, I'm curious about something. I once saw what appeared to be a book proposal for A SHOT IN THE HEART (how, I don't know, though it was lying about a cabin in Jackson Hole). It had been typeset and printed, and it had an attractive cover. I distinctly recall that it was a book proposal, but maybe it was some kind of publisher's promotional literature. In any case, it contained an overview, I believe, and a sample chapter of Gilmore's book. Have you ever heard of this kind of thing being done as a book proposal, and does it ever work, and, if so, in what circumstances?


I assure you it wasn't a book proposal, even without seeing it. Why? Book proposals like novels have to be in page (or electronic page) form. The reason is they have to go through the xerox machine. Bound books are hard to xerox efficiently no matter how pretty they look.

I'm going to guess it was a promotional teaser, or perhaps something for a movie pitch given it was in Jackson Hole.

One thing I know: it wasn't a proposal.

Under no circumstances, ever, do you want to print and bind a novel or a proposal. First, it smacks of complete ignorance of publishing standards, and second, you're just gonna have to do it over again right the second time.

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