Our books

Become a Fan

« CFP: Young Philosophers Lecture Series | Main | Call for Referees »



Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.


I guess it's the same as with papers, just bigger: trying to get feedback early on is crucial, but there is also some risk involved which you simply cannot get rid of. I'd suggest giving the first chapters to "trusted sources", as you say. Another strategy is to have an extended, analytical table of contents that you can discuss with friends or colleagues. I once did this on a mutual basis, with a colleague who works on *completely* different things (we basically had *no* idea what the other one was doing). It did not help for discussing details, but it helped a lot for thinking about the overall structure of the project and the reasons for why we want to engage with these topics at all, how we hope to change the terms of the debate, etc.
What I do with my book project at the moment is to present individual chapters as papers at conferences or seminars, and then take the opportunity of saying a few words about the project as a whole - and usually I get a few questions, and sometimes quite useful comments (and a general sense that the whole thing is worthwhile and addresses a gap in the literature). Initially I also wanted to try to publish individual chapters as papers, but I'm not so sure any more that this will work, because it is hard to make clear what this is all about if you don't give readers the context of the whole book, and usually you can't do this in the context of a paper, for mere lack of space.
As to the first part and the literature review problem: I think you need to state very clearly what your purpose is and then find categories for how other people see things. Then you can say things like: "Views x,y, z are basically variations of view v, and for this or that reason, I think v fails." Or you can discuss one view that you take to be exemplary for a certain position. Not sure how much this helps, but it worked quite well for my first book (which was my PhD thesis, so I had lots of feedback, which made things easier…).

Martin Shuster

I think your best bet is to revise until you have 2-3 chapters extremely polished and ready to share. Then, write up a book proposal and send it out to presses informing them that you have 2-3 chapters to share and have a draft of almost the entire book finished.

Then see where the chips land.

Best of luck!

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been saved. Comments are moderated and will not appear until approved by the author. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.


Post a comment

Comments are moderated, and will not appear until the author has approved them.

Your Information

(Name and email address are required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)

Subscribe to the Cocoon

Job-market reporting thread

Current Job-Market Discussion Thread

Philosophers in Industry Directory


Subscribe to the Cocoon