GWI editor worked on this book

Hire a ghostwriter here. One of our Ghost Writer, Inc. team members, a best selling ghost, created the proposal, "edited" the book, got it published and caused the production of the related movie. It became a blockbuster starring Queen Latifah and Jennifer Garner in 2016. Showings have finished, hope you rent the DVD or Blu-Ray!

Monday, April 10, 2017

What is Ghost Writing?

The ins and outs of ghost writing

Mmegi Blogs
Friday April 7, 2017

Ghost writing is when someone writes something but the credit for the writing goes to someone else. Many, if not most, of the books you see written by celebrities are in fact written by ghost writers.

ghost writing

Most presidents give speeches that they have not written. Some people nowadays even have someone else writing their posts on Facebook and Twitter. Ghost writers are everywhere. But what to do if you’re approached for a ghost writing gig? How does it work?

The most common ghost writing gigs are usually a one-off writing project. Let’s say for example, a family wants to record their history in a book to be given only to other family members. I’ve heard of these sorts of jobs in Botswana.

In this case, it’s likely they will be self-publishing this book with no intention of selling it. They want the writer to put together the information that they have gathered. The writer might need to record some oral stories from members of the family and transcribe them. Then the writer would put it all together in a readable form, ready to be taken to a book designer for layout and the cover, and then to the printer.

It’s important for the writer in this instance to have the full extent of the work involved clearly written out and forming part of the contract the two parties will sign. Such a project can bleed into many, many more hours than you might have anticipated. You don’t want a situation where you have conflict with the people who hired you. Conflict is avoided by having a very clear contract. For example, three one hour recording sessions or all research materials will be given to the writer by a certain date, no research material will be allowed after that date. Otherwise what seemed like a nice, easy writing gig, can turn into your worst nightmare.

The set fee will include the complete copyright being owned by the people who hired you. You will not be able to use any of that writing because it was a work-for-hire and you will not own the copyright. This and the amount of hours you have decided the project will decide the one-off fee. I would advise at least a quarter be paid before the project begins. The remainder given as instalments as the work progresses. The final payment should be ten percent or less. Be sure to include the number of rounds of edits that you’ll allow.

This means you write, you give it to the client, they make changes, you institute the changes. Limit the number of times that the client is allowed to do that. You might want to have an outline stage, where an outline for the book is agreed. If that’s the case, then any major re-writes should be defined as well, i.e. not more than 10% of the manuscript.

If the book is a ghost writing project for a celebrity that is going to be published by a traditional publisher where royalties are earned, then there are some different scenarios. If the publisher has hired you, then again it might be a one-off payment. And again a detailed, well-defined contract is a must. And too, a one-off usually means that you are forfeiting your copyright.

Alternatively, you might be given a royalty agreement with the publisher. Though your name will not appear on the cover, and in its place the celebrity will appear as the author, you will still earn royalties as the author. This is a good deal if the person is uber-famous and you can keep your own ego out of the equation.

The ghost writing gig that you should avoid and one I’ve seen often is where a person approaches you to say: “I have a fantastic story. I think you should write it and we can go half- half on the money the book earns”. This person almost never has a publisher lined up. S/he is going to self-publish. You’ll do all of the work and get no money until the book sells, and, undoubtedly, the story is not “fantastic” and you will earn no money for a lot of work and all of the time lost with having to deal with a delusional person. Do not do this. Please.

There are some writers who only ghost write and offer themselves as such. I’ve seen people who wish, for example, they could write a novel but can’t. They will pay someone, often a very good fee, to write the novel for them just so they can put their name on the cover as the author.

The most important aspect of ghost writing is to be clear about the project. You must have a well-defined contract with no lee-way for either party and with a strict payment regime, with payments along the way as the work progresses and a substantial chunk paid at the outset before beginning the project.

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Ghostwriter Christopher Shulgan

Christopher Shulgan's not-so-secret life as a ghostwriter

Special to The Globe and Mail
Published Friday, Mar. 03, 2017

Ghost Writer Christopher Shulgan

It was late at night on a dirt road in the Michigan wilderness. An auto industry executive and I were driving to his vacation home to hole up for a few days to work on a manuscript. Then the headlights illuminated a tree the snowstorm had blown onto the road. The two of us tramped out into the cold. On a count of three, we heaved at the trunk – and succeeded in moving the thing just a couple of inches.
My client looked at me and grinned.
“I don’t suppose this is in your job description?”
The thing about being a ghostwriter is that it doesn’t really have a job description. I began this line of work by accident. More than a decade ago, I called up the media relations manager for a company that I’d profiled for Toronto Life. The company had posted the article on its website, a violation of copyright, and taken my name off the story. I’d prefer if they just posted a link to the original article, I said. Sure, the manager agreed. No problem. And by the way – the company sometimes needed a writer. Would I be interested?
Sure, I shrugged over the phone. Why not?
What started with essays and op-eds segued into speeches. I ran an e-mail newsletter that required collaborating with a half-dozen professionals per month. Then came an offer to ghostwrite a book.
Turns out ghostwriting fits well with my abilities. It helps to be impervious to criticism. And psychic when it comes to interpreting editorial feedback. I happened upon the key skill early in my career when I ran a magazine that relied on a handful of volunteer contributors. With more empty pages than writers to fill them, I would dash off articles myself and slap a pen name at the top. The practice helped me develop the ability to write comfortably in a variety of voices.
“A ghostwriter, huh?” an Uber driver asked me recently. “You must be a really good writer.” And I suppose I am. But that’s not the service that I’m selling to my clients. A few years back, I judged one of CBC’s Canada Writes short story contests. I read hundreds of entries created by amateur writers, and time after time I was blown away by how good the contributions were. The experience deflated my ego. A distinct voice, a fresh turn of phrase, a well-told anecdote – sure, I manage each one pretty well, but it turns out plenty of people have those abilities.
Once, at a party, somebody asked me why I do it. Didn’t I want my name to be the big one on the cover? “I do it for the cash,” I said. The line earned a guffaw, but like a lot of cheap laughs it wasn’t strictly true. I really enjoy the work. Aside from therapists, whose job mine sometimes resembles, ghostwriters hear the stories that no one else gets to hear.
People have various ideas about the job. The name, ghostwriter, suggests some sort of subterfuge. Over the 12 or so years I’ve been doing it, I’ve worked with … Oh, hell. I don’t know. Fifty? Let’s say 50 clients. Only a handful have insisted on complete secrecy. Most of them are happy to admit that they’re working with me.
My latest book, The One-Minute Workout: Science Shows a Way to Get Fit That’s Smarter, Faster, Shorter, was written with the McMaster University time-efficient exercise expert, Dr. Martin Gibala. Working on that book was basically my ideal experience. It started when I was interviewing him for another client. Once I was done that job, I called up Marty and mentioned to him that I thought he should do his own book.
“Oh,” he said. “I’d never have time.”
“No,” I said. “I could write it with you.”
I explained the way I worked. We’d meet every week, for about an hour at a time, and just talk. Then I’d edit the transcript of our conversations. He’d read the result and offer feedback. I’d revise, and we’d repeat until both of us were happy.
Marty is a smart guy and, really, he could have written the book himself. Except it would have taken him a lot longer. Because, like most of my clients, he’s also a busy guy – a research scientist who runs a major physiology lab, and the chair of one of the most renowned kinesiology departments around.
Which brings us to the service that I’m actually providing to my clients.
Writing a good book requires big blocks of time. Scads of it. A certain kind that doesn’t exist for most people. The kind without interruptions. Long spans that aren’t punctuated by text messages or e-mail pings, Instagram notifications or Twitter DMs.
My career has confronted me with some remarkable experiences. I’ve suffered altitude sickness on a Himalayan mountaintop, sprinted across an active driving range in Aix-en-Provence and, for an upcoming project in Silicon Valley, ridden in the world’s most advanced self-driving car minutes after interviewing the men who designed it.
Then, I head to my office and I do something that’s not available to most of my clients. I stay off e-mail and avoid social media, and type away on my unnetworked computer for hours at a time.
Many of my clients can write well. Many of them are smarter than I am. And at least one of them can manage to work with his ghostwriter to heave a fallen birch tree off a remote Michigan road, inches at a time.
What they don’t have is the ability to disconnect from life.
Who does but a ghostwriter, these days?
Christopher Shulgan lives and writes in Kensington Market in Toronto.