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  • Seminar
  • Online: Zoom
  • Adult (18+)

Provoking Thought: Jumpstarting Your Nonfiction Book of Ideas

No Longer Enrolling

  • $75.00 Non-Member
  • $65.00 Member

Class Description

Do you have an idea for a book about science, medicine, parenting, psychology, architecture, culture, or technology? You're in luck: there's a booming market for these books! Writing such a "book of ideas," however, requires a very different approach than fiction or narrative nonfiction. In this state-of-the-art seminar, you'll learn everything you need to know in order to develop your idea into a book proposal and sell your book proposal to a publisher. We'll pay special attention to the two most important factors in selling a book of ideas: the framing and the platform. You'll learn about how the nonfiction publishing industry works and how it is changing, what agents and editors are looking for, how to find the best agent for your project, how to craft a winning proposal, and examine the differences between major publishers, small presses, and self-publishing.

We'll analyze successful and failed books of ideas published in the past few years, giving special attention to the different styles of Malcolm Gladwell (author of Outliers) and Steven Pinker (author of Blank Slate). The class consists of a structured lecture with fun slides and interactive discussions with plenty of opportunities to ask questions. By the end of the fast-moving 3-hour seminar you'll have a clear sense of what you need to do to write and sell your book of ideas!

Scholarships Format/Location

Thanks to the excellent literary citizenship of our donors, scholarships are available for all GrubStreet classes. To apply, click the gray "APPLY FOR SCHOLARSHIP" button. In order to be considered for a scholarship, you must complete your application at least one week before the start date of a class. Please await our scholarship committee's decision before registering for the class. We cannot hold spots in classes, so the sooner you apply, the better. Scholarships cannot be applied retroactively.

For more detailed information about GrubStreet scholarships, including how to contribute to scholarship funds for other students, click here.

This class will take place using Zoom videoconferencing. About 15 minutes before your class is scheduled to begin, you'll receive an email from your instructor with a link to join the class meeting!

Zoom Participation:

Students are not required to turn their camera on, but are encouraged to participate any way they feel comfortable through functions such as the live chat, emoji reactions, and unmuting the microphone. Learn more about using Zoom here.

Zoom Accessibility:

We ask that instructors enable closed captioning and send a transcript of the session after class. You can also enable closed captioning at any time during the meeting. If your instructor forgets to send the transcript, just send ’em an email!