Upcoming Agent Spotlight Interviews & Guest Posts

  • Caroline Trussell Agent Spotlight Interview and Query Critique Giveaway on 5/20/2024
  • Jenna Satterthwaite Agent Spotlight Interview and Query Critique Giveaway on 6/10/2024
  • Bethany Weaver Agent Spotlight Interview and Query Critique Giveaway on 6/26/2024

Agent Spotlight & Agent Spotlight Updates

  • Agent Spotlights & Interviews have been updated through the letter "K" as of 3/28/2024 and many have been reviewed by the agents. Look for more information as I find the time to update more agent spotlights.

Three Benefits of Writing a Book Proposal by Jessica Speer and BFF or NRF (Not Really Friends)? A Girls Guide to Happy Friendships Giveaway

Happy Monday Everyone! Today I’m excited to have debut author Jessica Speer here to share about her MG nonfiction, BFF or NRF (Not Really Friends)? A Girls Guide to Happy Friendships. It sounds like a great guide to help middle grade girls navigate the challenges of friendships.

Here’s a blurb from Goodreads:

Friendships are tough to navigate, even for adults. The preteen years can be particularly sticky, but we’ve got your back! Packed with fun quizzes, colorful illustrations, and stories about girls just like you, BFF or NRF (Not Really Friends) is the ultimate interactive guidebook to help you learn the ins and outs of friendship. Explore the topics of gossip, bullying, and feeling left out, along with ways to strengthen the friendships that mean the most to you. 


Now here’s Jessica!

Book proposals are used to sell nonfiction books to agents and publishers. A quick internet search will find dozens of articles and resources about how to write effective proposals. But, let’s face it, it’s not a sexy topic.

For many writers, it’s more fun to write the actual book or even do the laundry. Yet, the process of proposal writing is essential and not just because it helps to sell your book. Here are three benefits gained by working on a book proposal early in your writing process.

Benefit #1: You Get to Know Competing Titles

Proposals include a section that analyzes competing book titles and why yours is different and needed. Then comes the important part: for each competitor, you briefly summarize the book, clearly differentiate your title from the competition, and explain why there’s a need for your book. In this process,  you not only gain a deep understanding of other books on the topic, you learn how to make your book stand out.

Benefit #2: You Get to Know Your Audience

When writers begin to write, they may have a general understanding of who might read their book. Book proposals require a deeper understanding. Who will buy your book? Why will it sell? The audience section of proposals identifies the market of readers who will be compelled to buy your book, including primary and secondary readers.

Benefit #3: You Hone the Content of Your Book

Book proposals also include a detailed book outline and goals for the book. Since writers now have a better understanding of the competition and their audience, they can write a book that resonates with the market and readers.

In essence, for nonfiction authors, a book proposal serves the same purpose as a business plan. It’s not sexy or fun to write, but it’s an integral part of writing and selling the best book possible.

About the author: Jessica Speer’s book, BFF or NRF (Not Really Friends)? A Girls Guide to Happy Friendships grew out of her friendship program that strengthens social awareness and helps kids learn to navigate common struggles. She has a master’s degree in social sciences and explores social-emotional topics in ways that connect with pre-teens and teens. To learn more, visit www.JessicaSpeer.com or @jessica_speer_author on IG, or @SpeerAuthor on Twitter.

Giveaway Details

Jessica has generously offered a hardback of BFF or NRF (Not Really Friends)? A Girls Guide to Happy Friendships for a giveaway. To enter, all you need to do is be a follower of my blog (via the follower gadget, email, or bloglovin’ on the right sidebar) and leave a comment by November 20th. If your e-mail is not on your Google Profile, you must leave it in the comments to enter the contest. Please be sure I have your email address.

If you mention this contest on Twitter, Facebook, or your blog and/or follow me on Twitter, mention this in the comments and I'll give you an extra entry for each. You must be 13 years old or older to enter. This giveaway is U.S.

Marvelous Middle Grade Monday is hosted by Greg Pattridge. You can find the participating blogs on his blog.

Upcoming Interviews and Giveaways

Tuesday, November 9th I’m participating in the Super Stocking Stuffer Giveaway Hop

Monday, November 15th I have an interview with debut author Terry Catasús Jennings and a giveaway of her chapter book Definitely Dominguita Sherlock Dom

Tuesday, November 16th I’m participating in the In All Things Give Thanks Giveaway Hop

Monday, November 22th I have an agent spotlight interview with Danielle Chiotti and a query critique giveaway

Monday, November 29nd I have an interview with debut author Nancy McConnell and a giveaway of her MG fantasy Into the Lion’s Mouth

Hope to see you tomorrow!






Elizabeth Spann Craig said...

Nice tips here on proposals! Best wishes for a book that should benefit many girls!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

A non-fiction book proposal makes for a very different query than fiction.

Stephanie Owen said...

This book would be so helpful for my school!

Patricia T. said...

I love that title. Definitely fits the MG group. On again and off again! Great tips to authors about writing nonfiction proposal. Good luck with your wonderful book -- great for discussions. It belongs in every school library.

Danielle H. said...

I enjoyed the helpful tips for a book proposal. Thank you for the interview and chance to win a copy. I shared on tumblr and follow Natalie on Twitter: https://yesreaderwriterpoetmusician.tumblr.com/post/667306121302818816/three-benefits-of-writing-a-book-proposal-by

Elizabeth Seckman said...

I need this book for every teen who comes through my office. Sign me up for a chance. eseckman(at)ymail(dot)com

Greg Pattridge said...

This book sounds like a much needed resource for tweens. There's always a lot of drama going on in young friendships and this would certainly derail many of the problems often cropping up. I enjoyed the background on book proposals even though I'm more into the query side of the business.

Pete Springer said...

As a longtime elementary teacher of 5th and 6th grades, I appreciate books such as Jessica's. I taught grades 2-6 throughout my career. In general, girls were easier to teach than boys up until about 6th grade. It's important that schools tackle the subjects of bullying, gossiping, peer pressure, fitting in, and self-esteem as all of these topics can flip the culture of a classroom or school.

Liz A. said...

Sometimes I toy with the idea of writing a book about what I do. Nice to know I can do a proposal first, unlike with fiction.

Lynda R Young as Elle Cardy said...

what a great book!

tricia said...

Thank you for this post! It really does lay out the benefits of clearly knowing your own story and where it should land in the market.

suetwiggsbooks said...

I’m very interested in this book! I’m thinking your audience is middle grade. I have granddaughters that could benefit.
I will be writing a book proposal and your tips are most helpful.
Sue setwiggs@gmail.com

Nicole K said...

This would be a great book for my niece! Thanks for the chance! 3boymama81@gmail.com

Max @ Completely Full Bookshelf said...

I heard about this book, and it sounds like such a valuable read for many young readers! I know I benefited from some self-help books like these (albeit for different topics) as a kid, and I imagine other kids would as well. And this is really interesting info about book proposals! I'll pass on the giveaway, but thanks for sharing this great guest post, Natalie!

Maria Nicklin said...

Dear Jessica,
Thank you for the book proposal tips - and encouragement to write them! I am looking forward to reading your book, it sounds like an excellent resource.

Chelly Writes said...

Thanks for sharing!

Rosi said...

Thanks for the tips on writing proposals. Non-fiction is something I'd like to try my hand at. This book sounds like something middle-grade kids could really use. Making and keeping friends is so complex. Thanks for the post.

Annmarie Weeks said...

This looks like a wonderful book & I'd love to share with my daughter in her young 20s as well. I subscribe via email at amweeksoc @ comcast.net

Kim said...

What a brilliant book concept. Thanks for you thoughts on proposals as well!