The World of Ghostwriters

Posted on February 26, 2014

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imagesIf you’re scanning the web for ghostwriter-related material, chances are you’re interested in someone helping you extract that great novel idea from your head and send it on the road to publication. Perhaps you want to make sure you have all the pertinent information before you make a decision. There’s nothing wrong with that. Here is some information to teach you more about ghostwriters and what to expect when working with one.

For one, there’s a wider range of demand for ghostwriting than you might think. Yes, it’s a term that is often found in the book world, but it is a service in which other industries have come to see value. Several online sites use ghostwriters, states Sandra Clair of Premium Ghostwriting Services (http://www.find-ghost-writers.com/ghost_writer_services.aspx). Those who wish to increase traffic to their web pages will seek out individuals who can skillfully drum up content that is both SEO-friendly and appropriate for that site’s target audience. Technical writers, grant writers, and even resume writers can all find their niche within this profession.

Reasons for using a ghostwriter vary. Perhaps the chief motive is lack of time. Many politicians and celebrities have released memoirs detailing their achievements and tribulations. Have you ever wondered how they possibly had the time to pen a 300-something page book? In many cases, they didn’t have to. They found a ghostwriter instead. This reason for using a ghostwriter is true for most of us who are running the busy life race.

Another factor is a person’s ability to write. Do you believe yourself to be a good writer? Have you ever tried writing anything before? Have you done a fair share of research in the past? These questions are important to consider. After all, they have much to do with writing a book.

A ghostwriter is also a good choice for keeping the writing impartial, recommends Laura Sherman, a professional ghostwriter (http://laurasherman.com/tips-from-a-ghost-writer/why-should-i-hire-a-ghostwriter). Say you want to tell your life story, which might involve the death of a loved one. It would be a feat for anyone to have suffered such a loss and then revisit it over again in writing. The potential effect of the scene, as you write it, could become skewed, as it is a subject that you feel strongly about. A ghostwriter, who is not emotionally attached, will help to keep the text from a subjective slant.

Hiring a professional ghostwriter is also beneficial because they know what they’re doing. They are trained to root out the story or idea that lies inside of you and put it on paper. They will interview you and dig until they find what they’re looking for. Then, when all is said and done, you receive the credit. It was your initial idea and your working relationship with the ghostwriter that resulted in the finished product. It’s your book.

Choosing a ghostwriter, if your book means anything to you, should be a scrupulous search.

There are several ways to go about finding your own ghostwriter. Newspapers, or any other periodical publications, are great places to look for contacts or to put feelers out. A writer with any experience in the publishing world is a plus, informs Sydney LeBlanc of Forbes (http://www.forbes.com/sites/sydneyleblanc/2011/09/05/do-you-need-a-ghostwriter-for-your-book/).

You can also try looking into sites like WriterAccess.com or Jenkins Group.

For any writer you consider, you should do some online investigation. What pops up when you type in the ghostwriter’s name or company? There might be cause to be wary if you find little, or nothing at all. You want to make sure the writer you hire is credible and has something to show for his or her work.

It is a very good idea to meet with the writer in person before hiring him or her, counsels Sherman (http://laurasherman.com/tips-from-a-ghost-writer/hiring-a-ghostwriter).  Bring prepared questions to this meeting. Ask about work he or she has done in the past. Will he or she be able to communicate with you on a regular basis?  Also, take this time to discuss your vision for your book. Based on that, what would his or her approach be to helping you accomplish that vision?

To get more of an understanding of the candidate’s writing process, you can sometimes request that he or she write a few sample pages. The writer may request a fee for this service.

Working with a ghostwriter is different in each case, but there is a general blueprint that most adhere to. First off, paying a writer the entire fee before any of the actual work is completed is a bad idea, advises Sherman (http://laurasherman.com/tips-from-a-ghost-writer/working-with-a-ghostwriter-%E2%80%93-what-steps-should-you-take).  A portion of the total fee is acceptable. This will go towards the required time spent outlining and researching.

Be ready to hand over any important material to your ghostwriter, including notes or other relevant information in your possession. As the process gets underway, your ghostwriter will send you segments he or she has completed. It is your job to review these pieces and respond honestly. If you don’t like the direction the writer is taking, say so. How your book turns out depends on your feedback.

Ghostwriter or no, it comes down to how much you want to write a book. Are you willing to hunker down, take the time, and write that novel? If not, and nothing would make you happier than seeing your story in print, it’s well worth knowing that ghostwriters are able to help.

 Resources:

  1. Writer Access < http://www.writeraccess.com/?c1=GAW_SE_NW&source=USA_WA&kw=need_a_ghostwriter_phm&cr5=23708810431&gclid=CN__t-2utbwCFa9aMgodKwcAXQ>
  2. Jenkins Group < http://www.jenkinsgroupinc.com/our-services-ghostwriting.php>

Chelsey Edwards, Writer and Editor, Asta Publications

http://www.astapublications.com

Asta Publications has a long history of helping writers tell their stories and get published. Since 2004, Asta Publications has helped hundreds of authors bring their book concepts to life and we are ready to help you too! Our dedication to our authors is unmatched. We deliver first-class products and services that are accurate, high quality, and exceed our authors’ expectations.

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Posted in: Publishing