Now, Ghostwriting

In a recent post we discussed using copywriting services to generate powerful copy for your book sales efforts. Copywriting is often a form of ghostwriting, often for blogs, articles, and promotional material. What about ghostwriting for books?

Ghostwriting is the process in which one writes for and in the name of another (even in cases where the ‘another’ isn’t even a real person). You’re familiar with the term, but may not actually see it much in practice; hence, the moniker.

Most celebrity books you’ve seen or read are in part the product of ghostwriting collaboration. Political leaders, executives, even songwriters often use ghostwriting. There are varying degrees of ghostwriting involvement in books of all genres. An author may work with a subject expert to research, fact-check, and help polish a final draft. Or, in the case of John F. Kennedy, two books bearing his name were almost entirely penned by another. And, in some instances, a ghostwriter’s name will actually appear along with the author’s in the book credits – much of Tom Clancy’s work in the early 2000’s for example. Albeit, the ghostwriter’s name reads in much smaller print.

Does that imply that the author is in fact not a good writer? Perhaps. But rarely the case. And it should not suggest that the writer’s credibility is at all diminished as a published author. It’s often the opposite. A number of popular series titles have been written under a template, in the same style and tone, but at the hands of numerous writers working together to build the ‘brand’ name of a complete pseudonym. Think Nancy Drew.

Ghostwriting finds power in collaboration, and can be a great boon for your self-publishing endeavors, whether you’re a novelist, poet, or business owner looking to develop your brand. When exploring ghostwriting options with your publisher, be sure that you can be paired with someone in whom you find a good match whether your writing from scratch or simply working through a difficult section on your nearly finished draft.


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