WRITING: for someone else
Two questions come up when I say I Ghostwrite for people.
"Who in their right mind would write for someone else and not have their name on the cover?"
"Who on earth hires a writer to write their book and then expect only their own name to be on the cover?"
I know, this can be a confusing topic. It's normal for everyone to think that anyone who writes a book wants to have their name on the cover, and wants to be able to say to people that a certain book is all their own work - and mean it.
Yes and no.
When someone wants to get a book out of them, they usually have a burning need to impart their knowledge, some important information or a fantastic research project.
A person wants to give quality information on a subject they know a lot about - but don't necessarily know how to string the words together
They may not have the tools, time or inclination to hand to persist with the nitty gritty task of sitting for hours perfecting their grammar or getting the right sentence in order to express what they mean. But they have three things:
So, they turn to someone in the book-business known as a Ghostwriter.
No, not a writer who is a ghost or a hermit, living in the woods with an inability to liaise with the rest of the known world (although I believe you could reasonably accomplish this if that was your goal).
When you write a book on behalf of someone else, you're taking on board a whole host of elements
A Ghostwriter is a professional writer. A writer who comes from an editorial or journalistic background. One who has all the skills in writing, editing, proofreading, formatting.
One key ingredient is that they have a professional viewpoint. It's a vantage point that a person who is closer to the subject matter at hand doesn't ordinarily have. From that viewpoint they are able to give realistic advice of the work in question which enables them to stand back and make suggestions for improvements.
A Ghostwriter can also offer advice on the type of publishing route to pursue while also helping the author craft and present a book proposal for their work so that it catches the eye of a publisher or agent.
Ghostwriters work with the ideas that are presented to them, from a sheet filled with scribbled notes, a list of bullet points in order of importance or, even a video/audio transcript or a personal interview.
From the content they are given, they can begin to carve out the message that is needed to present to your particular customer, your target market - in your voice.
Not only do Ghostwriters need to be good writers, they need to have a good understanding of people too. Imagine a Dot Cotton-type character from East Enders fame putting together a book for a Joanna Lumley-type character. It just wouldn't work (for a comedy, maybe?!).
You can find a Ghostwriter in The Writers and Artist Year Book, The Writers' Handbook, or The Writers Market. You can also ask an agent, or even a publisher. They can have a list of folk to hand who would suite your needs to get that book out of you and onto the bookshelves.
The most important aspect is to connect with a person who is in alignment with your principles, your outlook, your view of the world and your style. That way, the Ghostwriter will be able to write in 'your voice' and produce something you will be proud of for years to come.
The answers are:
(a) Quite a lot of folk
(b) Experts in their field
All my best,
Kaye is a freelance publisher, author and certified psychotherapist with over three decades of experience in the television/film media, marketing and publishing worlds. She has published over ten books of her own and written over 15 books for professionals of their trade. She is also a writer for various blogs about writing, publishing, travelling and health care.
Feel free to visit her BewleyBooks.com site, where you can sign-up to follow her on various social media platforms: