Anyway, all that to say that the next step for me is to put together two or three story ideas and send those to my publisher. I always like to give my current publisher first dibs on whatever I write next because they have been so faithful to me. And because I like working with them a lot! But how do I put these story ideas together? How do I present them in a way my publisher will become all giddy about my ideas and want to sign me up for a million dollar contract? (Okay I'm exaggerating about the million dollars.)
First thing, you need a really good idea. It can't be a run-of-the-mill boy meets girl sort of idea that is already out there in a thousand books. It must be something unique, exciting, interesting. It can be similar to other stories (because let's face it, most everything has already been done) but it has to be a new twist on it
Next, you must create a pretty extensive description of your main character (or characters if it's a romance) Personality type, age, description, faults, dreams, hopes, goals, weaknesses, etc.
How to put your proposal together. Here are the main elements of the three proposals I just sent my publisher
Theme: Moral of the story or major theme that runs throughout
Backdrop: Time and place the story takes place and why that's important
Selling points: List what will make readers buy the book. As an example I'll list mine from one of my proposals
- Tie in with Best-selling Pirate series in both setting and character (Port Royal, Reverend Buchan, and Captain Merrick’s son). Sure to pull in prior pirate fans, begging for another story.
- Similar feel to it as found in Veil of Pearls: Soirees, fancy balls, upper crust, a character who flows between two worlds
- Fascinating historical event of the Earthquake that destroyed Port Royal, the wickedest city on earth.
- Intricate plot involving many events which lead up to saving the hero and heroine and the children from the earthquake, all directed by God’s hand
- Reminiscent of the duel identity found in the Scarlet Pimpernel
- Great theme that shows how what we may think is a bad thing ends up leading to a good thing if we just trust God
Heroine: name and description of heroine, what she wants in life and what's keeping her from it
Synopsis: 3 to 10 pages of story plot
And that's it!! Easy peasy? NOP. To put together a good proposal could take months, depending on the amount of research needed and how creative I can be in coming up with a new story.
Anyway, I just sent in 3 proposals to my publisher! I'm praying they will be interested in at least one of them. As soon as I know anything I'll let you all know! I'm excited. Really excited about all 3 stories, so we'll see where God leads me!