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How I went from PhD to Published: Part II

As I said in my last post, I’ve signed a book deal and am walking you through the steps that got me there. Where were we up to? Oh yes, I’d set up this website but lost valuable book-pitching time to handling it alone.

With an intern to help me with PhD2Published and bit of time back, I decided to think strategically again. I looked at the topic of my book and what its significance would be at a broader level and realised that that it would gel with a project on the future of academic publishing in the arts. In fact, I noticed what had been staring me in the face from the start, both PhD2Published and my book were yet more examples of my fascination with broadcast tools in the arts. And then I noticed something even more important, my book could become the test case for the project! This meant the book and project could support and lend weight to each other – not to mention reciprocally nurturing PhD2Published.

With this academic alchemy in mind, I researched the people best able to support my vision for the project and, impressed by the work I’d already done with PhD2Published they all came on board.

All I was missing was a publisher to publish my book and support the project so I started talking to some of the publishers I’d met already through PhD2Published. At this stage I did a lot of research and relied heavily on two books (How to Publish Your PhD and Getting it Published) to help me understand the pros and cons of working with different types of academic publisher.

I wrote a tight brief for the project and two more versions of my book proposal. Although this was some six months after the first proposal, this time I knew it was a strong proposal. Now pitching no longer felt like a shot in the dark, it felt much more like a science.

I got chicken pox and had to stop working on everything for over two weeks. Thankfully my wonderful intern picked up the slack on PhD2Published, but it was agonising having to wait yet more time before sending off the full proposal for a project and book.

Eventually, I got to pitch either the book or the book and project to publishers who’d expressed an interest and who I felt were right for the project. Several publishers got back to me saying that either they liked the sound of the book, but couldn’t support the project, or that they liked the project but would now of course have to put the book through the proper review channels.

And finally, the publisher I felt was most right for the project and the book had my proposal peer-reviewed and invited me to meet up and sign a contract. Hurrah!

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