Workshops, Courses, and Video Replays

To produce this free mini-course I analyzed 188 humanities and social science book titles. I’ll teach you:

  • Exactly how many words your title should be
  • Whether you need to coin a catchphrase for your book’s title (and whether your catchphrase actually works as a title)
  • The specific elements your book title needs to include
  • How to order all of the elements in your book’s title
  • How to make your book title “search-friendly” (this was something that tripped me up bigtime)

All of Our Upcoming Workshops

View our workshops on Teachable, or consult our workshops page.

Our Dissertation-to-Book FAQ & Encouragement Playlist

The Dissertation-to-Book Workshop

Sharpening Your Book Argument with Book Questions & Chapter Answers

Book Publishing Roundtable with Editors

First Monograph Publishing Q&A

Books We Recommend

Book Writing and Revising Tools

I (Katelyn) can’t speak highly enough of Scrivener as a writing and revising tool–especially for long and complex projects. Whenever I start to think “Oh, I can just write this piece in Word,” I inevitably stall out and migrate back to Scrivener. Why? I am a drafty writer; I need to get a lot of (really bad) words down on the page before I can wrangle my ideas into an argument-driven form.

How does Scrivener help? A project consists of one or more “Scrivenings,” each of which can be given a title and dragged around. Typically, when I’m working on macro (argumentative) revisions, I use the title to remind myself of the work each section or paragraph needs to do.

Scrivener also allows you to seamlessly display two units of text (or a research article and your text) side by side. I regularly have my messy draft (or an article I’m referencing) open in the left pane and my revised version in the right.

Another indispensable tool I (Katelyn) can’t live without is actually Microsoft Word’s built-in “Read Aloud” feature, whether on a desktop or a mobile device. I always thoroughly proofread my documents several times, but somehow every single time I use the “Read Aloud” feature, I catch missing and repeated words and several awkward sentences.

For some reason, I vastly prefer the voices on the mobile Word app (iOS) than the full desktop version–they sound much less robotic to me– but in the end, both work fine to help you get distance on your writing.

Blog Posts by Category

All Blog Posts

  • Academic Book Arguments

    Everything You Need to Know About Academic Book Arguments

    Are you working on your first scholarly book, struggling to distill your book’s tightly argued, significant claim? Have you been wondering if your argument will emerge as the sum of its parts? I (Katelyn), too, was there not long ago, existentially afraid that my book had no argument. I tried various tactics, like writing through…

  • Why and How to Separate Your Big-Picture Thinking From the Proposal Genre

    Why You Should Separate Big-Picture Book Thinking from Your Book Proposal

    When you’re working on turning your dissertation into a book, it’s essential to have a clear sense of your book’s overall argument and structure. But many authors believe they need to write their book proposal first to gain that big-picture perspective. However, we recommend separating your big-picture book thinking from the actual writing of your…

  • What to Cut and What to Keep Book Chapters

    How do I know what to cut and what to keep from my dissertation?

    It all starts with your Book Questions and Chapter Answers. Book Questions and Chapter Answers are powerful tools for transforming your dissertation into a compelling scholarly book. They help you identify and articulate your book’s core argument, ensure each chapter is focused and purposeful, and plan your revision process. Here’s how it works: Your Book…

  • Academic book Titles

    Academic Book Titles: How to Title Your Monograph, based on 188 Titles

    Your book title is an editor’s first data point, and many authors (myself included!) draft terrible titles. Write a strong title with the actionable lessons in this post!

  • Seeing your academic book through publishers' eyes

    Finding the Right Academic Publisher #1: Seeing Your Book Through University Presses’ Eyes

    You—the author—have the ultimate insider’s perspective when it comes to your book. You know everything about each object you analyze and how your ideas develop over the course of your chapters. Publishers come to your book through a very different perspective.

  • Can Your Academic Book Reach “A General Audience”?

    You might know that your book will need to speak to scholars in your discipline(s) and have heard that it’s unwise to describe your book’s audience as “a general audience interested in [topic]” on your academic book proposal. But regardless of what your book proposal says, you might still hold out hope that your book…

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