Elements of a Fiction Book Proposal: Your Comparables

Here’s another great post from Michael Dellert on the elements of a fiction book proposal. This one focuses on comparables.


The second part of your fiction book proposal includes “comparables,” four to six novels that you see as similar to your own in some way.

To recap, a great fiction book proposal essentially breaks down into five elements:

  1. About Your Book and the Target Market (What can you do for us?).
  2. Your “Comparables” (What’s your niche?).
  3. Your Biography (Who are you and why should we care?).
  4. Marketing and Publicity (How can you help me to help you?)
  5. Sample Pages

Today, we’re going to talk about competitive analysis, or “comparables.”

Your Comparables

One of these things is not like the others... One of these things is not like the others…

Some publishing agents call this section of a fiction book proposal the “Competition” section, but I prefer to think of it as “Competitive Advantages,” or better yet, the “Comparable Titles” section. This emphasizes the idea (in your own mind and that of book agents and publishers) that your book is…

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