Joel R. Primack
We had been thinking about a book for years but struggling to figure out how to structure a book about the universe and its meaning," explained Nancy Abrams. "We did send out a proposal with a top science book agent in New York a few years ago, but he shopped it around for a week, got several responses of ‘too complicated,’ and dropped it immediately. He made no effort to help us improve it. We met Doug in late 2002, and over the course of a year, working over our ideas with him, we re-conceptualized the book and learned from Doug how an effective proposal is written.”
Doug presented the proposal to publishers in mid-September 2003," said Joel Primack, "and just one week later a bidding war was on between two of the biggest publishers, and both were offering very high six figure advances. This was at least an order of magnitude more than we had expected. We realized we couldn’t decide between them on the basis of money alone. We wanted to meet the people behind the offers, so we flew out to New York with Doug. With Doug’s brilliant negotiating skills, in the end we were able to structure a deal where we got our dream publisher.