Ghostwriter’s Roles Revealed
I never dreamed I would end up a ghostwriter. I mean, let’s face it, most people don’t just wake up one day and say, “I am going to be a ghostwriter.” Most people fall into the job through other channels and avenues in their lives. I fell into being a ghostwriter from almost losing my life.
For me, it was after losing my left leg below the knee. I was flat on my back, down for the count, and didn’t know where my life was headed. I began to soul search and decided life was too fragile, short, and it was time to do what I have always truly loved to do…
And that was to write.
I doubted in the beginning if I had what it takes and skilled enough to earn my living writing books. And even though I doubted myself, I knew my work ethic. And anyone that knows me understands I work my ass off and give 110% to everything I set my mind to. Also, I knew I had tenacity, fortitude and willingness to learn by absorbing as much information on writing as I could. Lastly, I knew I could improve by working hard, studying every book, and writing diligently each and every day. That was the only way.
Writing, and learning to write, is a solitary profession involving an immense amount of commitment and self-drive to get things done. I grasped this concept to build my career. So, as I was learning to walk again, I was sharpening my writing skills simultaneously. Then one day I came across a quote from Author Sara Sheridan, who said, “Copywriters, journalists, mainstream authors, ghostwriters, bloggers, and advertising creatives have as much right to think of themselves as proficient writers as academics, poets, or literary novelists.”
And she is right. She made me realize that writing is a mindset along with skill. Writers are writers, and no matter the genre or specialty, the ability to interchange between different styles is a sought out, laboriously-acquired skill in of itself.
So, I took every writing assignment I could. The work was intense, labor-intensive, along with high word counts and deadlines that far outweighed my fees. Yet, I knew the experience of writing within these different styles and voices was going to provide me with the hands-on training I needed to hone my skills to be a professional ghostwriter.
I began writing hundreds of blogs and web pages for many clients across the internet. Yes, the work was arduous but I understood I was honing skills, sharpening my knowledge and professional standards by meeting deadlines, matching tone and voice, along with defining style and content. For me, this was the vast experience of massive proportions I needed. Today, after ghostwriting eight books, along the way, I realized there are many and important roles a ghostwriter can be to any new author.
Allow me to define a few terms to better explain the roles of an accomplished ghostwriter. The first term is what we all know as “Ghostwriter.” There has been a long-standing history of using ghostwriters to write for other people. The Bible was ghostwritten and there isn’t any doubt that the book is known globally. Many celebrities and public figures use Ghostwriters and often ghostwriters are used by publishing companies to produce a professional manuscript for the author who may or may not have the time or skill to write their own book. Many publishing companies employ the use of ghostwriters to increase the marketability of a book with these high-level pubic figures. Over hundreds of years, many publishing houses have used ghostwriters to get the job done in this manner. Two of President John F. Kennedy’s books were written almost entirely by and credited to ghostwriters. And President Donald Trump and Hilary Clinton wrote their autobiographies with ghostwriters.
Even though those ghostwriters’ names were on the cover of these famous authors, the ghostwriter could technically be considered a “co-author” by their name being included. Yet, the term Ghostwriter is exactly what it implies. An invisible person that remains behind the scenes and writes for the author. In most situations, the ghostwriter remains invisible and does not take credit. The ghostwriter gets paid as “work-for-hire” and therein lies the reason most ghostwriters get paid well because they receive no credit for the manuscript and credit belongs solely to the author.
Another subsequent role a ghostwriter provides is called a “Collaborator.” The way to recognize this is when an author places the word “WITH or AND” on the cover. When my name goes on a cover of a book, the gracious author has agreed to acknowledge my contribution to the work by placing my name on the cover or on the acknowledgment page. By placing a ghostwriter’s name on the cover or inside the book implies the ghostwriter contributed to the book and worked as a collaborator to make the project happen.
The other important role ghostwriters can undertake is the role of “Book Doctor.” Many ghostwriters are called in by publishing houses to clean up an existing manuscript to make it shine and marketable. I was just recently called to clean up a manuscript and the author and publisher loved the work. And from what I have seen the book has done extremely well. I am proud to have been a part of it. So, yes, a ghostwriter may be called in to edit, clean up, refine, rewrite and polish a rough draft of a book. And as a book doctor, there are ghostwriters who are called to write an entire book solely from information gleaned from the author’s stories, outlines, recorded audio or interview sessions. For a ghostwriter to accomplish this, it is often difficult to capture the type of style, tone, or “voice” they want in the book solely from these types of situations. yet a good ghostwriter can make it happen and can get it accomplished.
I offer Book Doctoring services and enjoy the challenge of cleaning up existing transcripts and books in the first or second stages.
Ghostwriting is an important job in the publishing world and serves so many authors across the globe in accomplishing their dreams and plans of having a book for themselves, or their business.
Are you hear and have a book idea and need some help in getting it written? I would love to learn how I can help you in making it happen. Or maybe you are here with an existing manuscript and need to refine it to make it shine? I’d love to help you. Get in touch today and schedule a FREE Book consultation. Http://www.ghostwritingusa.com/contact or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org