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About Writing Right: The Blog


Someone asked a question online the other day about finding someone to ghostwrite a novel for him. Here's how I responded.

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Can anyone? Sure. Will that person be top-notch? Not so fast.


Here's the deal. A first-rate, professional ghostwriter with an opening in his schedule, who also just happens to love your idea and is on the same track as you, will do the job. More people employ ghosts to write their novels than anyone here can possibly imagine. Sometimes, people have a dynamite idea for a book and don't have the time or skills to bring it to fruition. In fact, oftentimes! The same with nonfiction books. It happens far more frequently than people realize, even among top-selling authors (go figure!).


Professional ghosts get their kicks out of writing the book you have in mind. And making it work. The best of the best write in your own literary style, too. Yes, they're that talented. And, of course, they turn out a product of which you can be proud after working together with your ghost for weeks or even months, depending upon the complexity and length of the project.


As a bonus, a well-connected professional ghost will also professionally edit your book and help you land a literary agent and a conventional publisher, although ghosts with those connections and qualifications are few and far between. And, I'm speaking here as a ninety-book, conventionally published author in all genres and a ghost who has helped dozens of others get their books written and published. Doing so is just one of the things that brings me pleasure in life.


So, where do you find this Wonder Woman or Superman? It ain't easy. A well-qualified ghost must also be a conventionally published author and a former magazine/newspaper/book editor and should have some years of experience teaching writing at the college level. Those are all skills that come in handy when ghosting. Yet, few of the ghosts who haunt the on-line literary puppy mills match that criteria. Not by a long shot. Hire the wrong one, and you'll regret it. Hire the right one, and you're in hog haven.


If you'd like some suggestions from someone with half a century in the writing/publishing industry, just drop me a line via My Website, and I'll get you some names of a few proven pros who can do the job. After that, it's all up to you. I hope this helps.


Meanwhile, smoke if you've got 'em!

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D. J. Herda is author of the new ebook series of writing advice, About Writing Right, available at amazon and at fine booksellers everywhere.

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