Paul French
Paul French

Award winning author Paul French explains how to pitch your China book to publishers, and – even more important –  which books on China you might as well not write anymore, for the Asia Society

The Asia Society Blog:

1. Build your book around a specific topic, rather than China in general. “More depth, less breadth.”

2. Focus on “bottom-up analysis,” rather than the “3,000-feet view of China from the airplane.” “People are much more interested in what people are doing on the ground.”

3. Take a more nuanced approach, because China is not as alien to the average reader as it once was. “The idea that you can just do a book that’s called Doing Business in China is probably passed now.”

4. Write about Chinese lives. “Memoirs of expatriates and foreigners who lived in china … are just not selling.”

5. Try rapid-response publishing. “China is always a fast-moving target. Waiting around a year-and-a-half or two years or more for a book to come out … just isn’t the way things work anymore.”

More on the Asia Society Blog.

Paul French is an author on the China Speakers Bureau. Do you need him at your meeting or conference? Do get in touch or fill in our speakers’ request form.

China Weekly Hangout

Apart from writing a book, you can of course also join our China Weekly Hangout now and then, to give your comments and pave your road to fame. Like our April broadcast on the bird flu in China with flu expert Harm Kiezebrink from Beijing, HKU-lecturer Paul Fox from Hong Kong and CEIBS adjunct professor Richard Brubaker from Shanghai. We try to figure out what is happening with N7H9, and what possible scenario’s can develop. And we discuss what the Chinese government has learn from SARS, now ten years ago.

The China Weekly Hangout is holding on May 9 an open office, where you can discuss current affairs in China or suggest subjects for hangouts later this year. You can read our announcement here, orregister for the hangout here.


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