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064 - Ghosting the Ghostwriter

ghostwriting Aug 18, 2020

So you think you don’t have time to write but you’ve just gotta get that book done…and you’re thinking about hiring a ghostwriter to help bring your book over the finish line.

Hey Guys Nicole Gabriel here!

Over the years I’ve had many authors approach me and tell me they’d love to publish a book  but they are too busy. I recently had a doctor ask me if I had a system and resources so that he could ghostwrite his book because he (and other doctors he knows) are just far too busy. I know, I used to be married to one. I know all about him not having time! I told him that I do have a system and connections, but most people that come to me and want to hire a ghostwriter end up not doing so and well…it’s also very expensive. He looked at me with a rather blank look on his face but never really asked any further questions. So, doc…if you’re listening, this podcast is for you!

Let me start by saying that, first and most important, someone else cannot pretend to have your body of knowledge and many years of experience and write your book as you! It’s just that simple. This is kinda like having someone go on a diet or go to the gym on your behalf. You just aren’t going to get the real results you are after if you don’t do it yourself. Let me explain.

Here’s how a ghostwriter works…they interview you! Let’s say that you have 15 topics or chapters. They might interview you for each chapter. If they are really good they might ask you just the right questions and intuit the rest of the story between the lines. You might be interviewed an hour for each chapter. Let just imagine that your first chapter is about describing how you grew up. Can you tell that story in one hour or less and get in all the details? Your ghostwriter has never met Uncle Joe. Can you describe all the details about all of your relatives and pick out the top memories to share? Let’s say the next chapter is about the one detail you do in your work practices that only you do. Can you describe all the minute nuances in less than an hour?

The ghostwriter may take some brief notes or record each interview, but are you confident that you can share enough about what you’ve been doing and all the years you’ve been doing it in just one hour for each topic?

Ghostwriters try to pretend to be each person they interview…get in their heads. But, the reality is that they are not you. It’s very hard to get all the details accurate. It’s also very hard to mimic your voice, energy, and style. It’s like asking someone to clone you and they just never will be you.

But, the greatest issue that goes unseen is the amount of re-work that an author needs to do on the ghostwriters work. By the time you correct and edit all they have written you could have actually written it yourself. Every person I have ever talked to about the ghostwriting job the’ve had done for them has the same complaint…I could have written it myself. It becomes rather confusing to edit something that can be just entirely wrong. It would be far easier to submit a rough manuscript to an editor and ask them to clean it up. Remember, you can’t have someone go on a diet or to the gym on your behalf. You have to do the work to get a beautiful end result.

Honestly, a great editor is really all you need. The proper editor can clean up a messy manuscript and make you look like a professional writer.

But, here is the real kicker…did you know that you can easily pay a ghostwriter $5,000 to as much as $1000,000 even more? A cheap ghostwriter might be $2,000 to $15,000, while a mid-range professional will cost more - $15,000 to $100,000 depending on the size of the project. These ghostwriters can be a bit harder to find too. But, a celebrity ghostwriter will cost far more…some six to seven figures.

The cost alone should be the greatest reason to simply write a book yourself! Why does it cost so much you ask? Fees are generally based on both word count and the quality of the writer. For an average 250-300 page book an average ghostwriter might charge $25,000 to $100,000 and up. Many ghostwriters will charge a dollar a word - 50,000 words…$50,000. Yikes!

You may also have to pay royalty fees, place the ghostwriters name on the cover or in the acknowledgments to give credit… or even pay more if you don’t want to give away that you used one.

You might consider hiring an intellectual property attorney to draw up a ghostwriter contract to protect the work as your own as well. So, of course, an additional fee here. The key points here may be more deadlines, expected length of the project, and the number of revisions allowed, but clearly you also have to protect your confidentiality, copyright, and clearly define the price for the services expected and how payments work…perhaps for milestones reached.

You may also want to hire the ghostwriter to write up a book proposal to find an agent…to keep things in the same writing style and voice. Although, a typical ghostwriting fee for a book proposal can be $5,000 to $20,000.

The general process is that the ghostwriter will interview you then write a chapter and submit it to you. Then, they may interview you again to make edits, then submit the new chapter re-write to you. This may go on for awhile until you are satisfied with what they have written. This can go on for some time. For those that don’t have time…you may see this isn’t saving you any.

So…have you figured out that hiring a ghostwriter isn’t exactly as easy as you thought it might be?

When you simply write the book on your own you can be quick and accurate. You have to do the mental work on your own book…it’s really not a big deal to capture your own experience, right? All you really need is 15 long stories. And, did you know that in (15) minutes of talking you could have an entire chapter’s worth of content? In fact, you can record your voice talking and transcribe it. I do author interviews for my podcasts and I transcribe those. I use Anyone can talk for 15 minutes, right?

So, avoid the huge expense. Avoid the time expenditure and frustration of back and forth manuscripts. You can do this! After all, imagine what you could buy as a reward for yourself when your finished…two nice sports cars perhaps! Wow!

I can show you how to do all of this. I’ve even discounted my online book publishing program to just $495 during this crazy time we are living in. I want to keep you inspired to build something great as we step into 2021. I do believe we have so many fabulous things coming in the new year. Get a head start now! Just click on over to the store on the Let’s Get Your Book Published website and click “BUY NOW” on the “Let’s Get You Enrolled” button.

OK guys…stay inspired and moving forward…there are awesome things to come!

As always wishing you peace, love, and light!

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