Ghostwriting

Question: What is ghostwriting?
Answer: Ghostwriters write books that are officially credited to you — the official author. Therefore, ghostwriting involves writing by an anonymous consultant, and that consultant is me!

You. Me. Ghostwriting.

Why is ghostwriting such an important option for authors? Many aspiring authors have amazing stories to share, but lack a writing or editing background. They may have physical or health issues that prevent their story from being told. Or, they may be too busy to write a novel or memoir.

No one should give up a lifelong dream of publishing a story simply because they can’t write it. That’s where I come in.

I ghostwrite novels, memoirs, biographies, legacy and self-help books under your name. Whether fiction or nonfiction, you get the writing credit and copyright. It’s your book, written in your voice. I am simply your assistant, scribe, guide, and collaborator—a ghostwriting consultant.

Ghostwriting is Personal

As a professional ghostwriter, I take your concept and turn it into to a book. I am experienced, extremely collaborative, and understand what this project means to you. That’s why I pour my heart and soul into your storyline.

Ghostwriting is an extremely personal undertaking and can involve any genre. Perhaps you have a memoir or biography in mind that honors a loved one and is just waiting to be written. Perhaps you want to tell your family’s story, the world’s greatest love story, or a white-knuckle thriller like no other. You may want to publish self-help, fitness, or relationship advice. Maybe your passion involves sci-fi, dystopian, fantasy, or a paranormal tale. Perhaps you have a charming story filled with fascinating and quirky characters that would perfect for a series of books. Or perhaps you envision an epic romance. Or a whodunnit. Or a book about a rare disease. And there can never be too many first-hand accounts of military service or careers spent in harm’s way. My job is to take your concept and develop it into a full manuscript.

ghostwritingGhostwriting Process

Perhaps you need help jump-starting the process. Don’t worry — we can Skype, email and talk on the phone. Although most of my clients live outside of Texas, some will fly in for meetings, and vice-versa (a Canadian client has done just that on multiple occasions).

I can transcribe tapes and also work from your notes and the paper documents you mail me through UPS, Fed Ex or USPS. I do ask, however, that you send me copies of documents and keep the originals, as I often make notes, underline, or otherwise organize the material.

Some authors share audio files. Some email thoughts. Some text snapshots of newspaper clippings. There is no wrong way to share information — it’s all valuable and adds to the story arc.

Many authors have me interview people and organizations. You may need me to research history or timelines. You may need me to research the backstory. I excel at gathering details. My job is to gather details, sort through material, develop a chronology, and write the story.

I write each chapter and share it with you for feedback. Together we build the book until it’s ready to launch. I can also write your front matter, back matter, author’s bio, back cover content, and Amazon listing description. I help you come up with chapter titles or even the book title.

Ghostwriting and Credit

It may surprise you, but the truth is that many books are ghostwritten. No one is supposed to know. The whole point of hiring a ghostwriter is to make sure your story is well written in your voice and under your name.

Celebrities hire ghostwriters, but so do others who want their story told in the best possible manner. My ghostwriting clients span a wide demographic and include moms, dads and grandparents with heartfelt and important stories to share with the world. Single, married, or divorced. Sassy and young. Older and wiser. Some have struggled, climbed metaphoric mountains, endured profound loss, or witnessed unimaginable events. Sometimes books are written to uncover the truth, call out wrongdoers, set the record straight, or add to a body of literature on the topic.

  • Generally, I ghostwrite your book for a fee and you retain all rights. In these instances I’m credited only as the editor.
  • Some authors prefer to credit me as a co-author — rare, but it does happen, and always at the author’s insistence.
  • Note that I quote projects with industry standard rates in mind — not high or low, but average.
  • I consider the degree of difficulty, desired length of manuscript, research requirements and estimated time frame.
  • Every once in a while a book concept is so extraordinary that I believe it has potential for further ventures. In these instances I may negotiate a percentage of sales, first right of refusal on prequels, sequels and series, and/or first right of refusal to write the screenplay.

Bringing Your Story to Life — Agents, Marketing and More

What an incredible feeling when a manuscript is ready to launch—a unique and never-before-told story for others to enjoy, study and even cite. Click here to see an article on the topic.

Remember, too, that after the book is written, several new hurdles arise. If you want to publish traditionally with a top tier publisher or top imprint, you must query a literary agent.

If you wish to self-publish, you will likely need the services of a book formatter who will trim your book to a 6 x 9, design your cover, provide ISBN and bar code, and upload to Amazon and other bookseller sites.

Don’t forget the marketing aspects. Many traditionally published authors are surprised to learn they are responsible for marketing their books, even though they’ve signed with a well-known publishing house. Yes, the publishing house will likely promote the book on its website and social media, but authors are expected to roll up their sleeves and market their books as well. Social media, book signings, and interviews on radio and podcasts are common platforms.

Doesn’t it make sense to have a professional ghostwriter develop your book? Contact me and let’s make it happen!

melanie@melaniesaxtonmedia.com