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Ghostwriters…Are They For You

According to Gotham Ghostwriters, the definition of ghostwriting is the act of one person writing in the name of another person, group, company, or institution without receiving a byline or public credit. They go on to say ‘but more often than not, ghostwriting is a customized form of collaboration, covering a range of relationships and services tied to the authors’ needs, objectives and work style’.

With that said, is a ghostwriter for you? Some of you may remember the diet soda Tab and their tag line was “All of the taste, and none of the calories”. Hiring a ghostwriter is kind of the same thing. You get the credit and the accolades (all of taste) and the ghostwriter does not share royalties (none of the calories). Here is a breakdown of positive and negative reasons for hiring a ghostwriter.


POSITIVE:

  • They can help the author develop a concept, embellish the initial idea.

  • They can shape the narrative.

  • They can capture the author’s authentic voice.

  • Great if the author is too busy to write, or simply does not want to do the writing.

NEGATIVE:

  • The cost. Ghostwriting can be quite expensive. Prices can range from 10 cents - $4 per word to $2k - $60k per book. You are buying their time, not necessarily their experience.

  • All they do is write. You get a manuscript and it is then up to you to find a publisher and marketer.

  • You do the research. If it is your memoir, obviously, you need a rough copy for the ghostwriter to enhance, but if you have a great idea for a fiction book, you have to do the research and jot down notes for the ghostwriter to enhance.

  • Since ghostwriters do not get credit for their work, references aren’t available. Ghostwriters are freelance writers so you may see articles they have written, but can not give you client testimonies or samples of their ghostwriting projects.

Some things to remember if you choose to go this route; read the contract very carefully before you sign. Make sure the payment is clearly stated and deadlines are made. Even though ghostwriters are freelance writers, you don’t want them writing your book as a side gig. Make sure YOU OWN the rights to the book. A good ghostwriter knows they do not get credit, copyrights or royalties.

I don’t want to scare you if this is the route you are thinking of taking. I just want to know some of the ins and outs of it.

Where do you find a ghostwriter? There are a couple of site I checked out that have gotten good reviews:

Work Cited:


Until next time…




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