So, here is the typical conversation with publishers' reps (PR) about "the book":
PR: So I hear you are writing a book. (BTW, this has been true for 2 years now).
Me: Yes, it is a sex book, but it puts sex in a meaningful context.
PR: Can I see the outline?
Me: Um no - we don't feel it is ready to share yet. Check back later.
PR: So, what makes it so special?
Me: Hey, I have been teaching this for 10 years. I would like to think I have learned something about what students want to know and the ways they might prefer to get the information. They don't call me Dr. Ruth for nothing.
PR: Okay, what do they want?
Me: Well, if I told you that you could share that information with other writers and they might beat us to it. Trust me, I can give them what they want and still make it academic.
PR: I wouldn't talk about it.
Me: Right. That's true, you won't because I am not sharing until we are a little farther along.
Yes, and then we will give a basic outline to all of you and watch the feeding frenzy. It will be fun.