I’m still on vacation so this week I’m going to share another installment of our popular column, World’s Worst Book Proposals. Yes, we can learn from others’ mistakes! Featured below are real quotes from book proposals submitted to me over the past few months…and one bizarre note from an author whose book was rejected.
When asked for a 40-word description of their novel:
(Book title) is a mystery/romance that follows (character’s name) a former up and coming athlete, and his former girlfriend whom are stalked and harrassed by someone in there past life.
Brief email description:
“it is a mistery book.”
College Educated Copyright Infringer
“I am a college Composition teacher. I pulled the images for my book from different websites.”
This is the second sentence in the book:
“She was sitting outside on the hill, her hazel green-brown eyes stared out at the night sky the pasture pond below her.
When I told an author their book contained numerous grammatical errors, this was the reply:
“Thank you for your prompt e-mail. The book is edited. It is well written book and comprehensive. It is not true that the book contains grammatical errors throughout the manuscript, because it is edited book so you need to delete the file if you are not interested to publish the book. However, if you are an editor, then you ought to edit it grammatically, it is your function isn’t it? I have the impression that Christians ought to help Christians: Are you real a Christian who truly fear God? Please delete the file and forget all about it. OKAY? Thank you for writing. Blessings. Please read [Psalm 8: 1-7: and 2:4-5]: It is my submission to you for the day: Also read [John 11: 35]:”
Email I received:
“what if i want to publish a book that i am writeing? it at least 200 to 230 pages long”
This was the second sentence of the book:
“but I truly believe the problem with most these men”
Another email I received:
“I have wrote a story and I wont you to see it.”
Semi-autgraphical short stories…”
Book description in the proposal:
“This is strickly a ficton novel.”
I received the following email after I rejected a book because I suspected it would result in a huge libel lawsuit. This was, shall I say, a questionable tell-all book that was written by someone who, as you can see below, appeared to be a bit off-kilter. This person claimed to be an attorney but I didn’t believe it for a second. You won’t, either. I refused to publish the book, and refused to take this author’s money. This was their response:
“No legal liabilities at all. The book was already published. His lawyers admitted that I knew him, regularly visited him (in prison), and nothing after that, not a word, no lawsuit no nothing nada. You’re a scammer jammer. I just talked to a few self publishers that want it for free, I guess they can smell money better then you can. Happy New Year! You were unprofessional. I see you’re working on a legal holiday, which is suspicious to say the least. You answered by talking about legal liabilities. You have no clue what you’re talking about. Yet you write statements as though they were fact. You’re full of horse droppings. What manuscript did you reject? You never read or saw one, that shows how unprofessional and judgmental you are. In my opinion extremely stupid too. Do not email me again. I have no time for you. Deal with your millions of clients. Happy New Year!”
For more, see the previous installment of World’s Worst Book Proposals HERE.