Once the proposal is accepted, the publisher will offer the contract to the author. Once the contract is signed, the author starts working on the book. The author and the acquisitions editor would have agreed on time schedules, milestones, and deliverables.
The outline of the content of the book is mainly developed by the author and is sent to the publisher in the book proposal. The publisher will send the book proposal for technical review and the reviewers will give their comments on the adequacy of the content—whether it is sufficient and if not what to add and what to omit.
Once the review comments are received, it is given to the author, who will modify the contents as required. If the book is written for a specific audience, then the contents are based on the requirements of that audience. For example, if one is writing a textbook for a particular course, then the syllabi of such courses will have a significant influence on the content of the book. Similarly, if the book is for professional reference, then the needs of the professionals will have major influence on the content. Again a book to teach a language skill will have the topics based on the level of the target audience—a book for the beginners (for example, Wiley’s Dummies series) will have a different set of topics and treatment than a book for advanced learners (for example, McGraw-Hill’s Complete Reference series).
The content is developed by the author with input from technical experts, development editors, marketing team, etc., and is finalized once it get the publishers approval. This content goes into the contract and forms the basis of the manuscript. But there can be changes to this during the writing process as a result of comments from the reviewers, clarifications or elaboration felt necessary by the author. There can be changes or additions to the contents due to new developments in the field of the book that need to be included.
Once the content and time schedule is agreed upon and the contract or MoA is signed, the author starts writing the book. Once the writing begins, as agreed upon the author sends manuscript either chapter-by-chapter or section-by-section to the publisher for technical review. In other cases, the completed manuscript is given to the publisher on or before the agreed deadline.
[Note: This is the first draft of the book. I would require your comments, suggestions and feedback to make the book more useful, interesting, and as error free as possible. Please send your comments, suggestions and feedback to me.]