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  • Writer's pictureLaura Schaefer

Today, I am answering all of your questions about ghostwriting! Yay!

QUESTION: Who hires ghostwriters?

ANSWER: More people than you probably realize. The number I've heard most often is 60% of nonfiction books are ghostwritten. But that doesn't even get at the whole picture. Think about how many ebook downloads, newsletters, social media posts, white papers, and website content pages there are in the world. Billions, right?

Someone has to write all of that content. Someone like, say, me. ;)

QUESTION: How much do ghostwriters charge?

ANSWER: It varies a lot, but if you want your book or your content written by a professional, plan to pay at least $1/word. Think in terms of thousands of dollars, not hundreds.

QUESTION: How do I hire a ghostwriter?

ANSWER: Ask your network if they know a talented writer. If you are unable to get a personal referral, use Google or LinkedIn. Review the sites of 5-10 writers and plan calls or Zooms with the 3-4 you like the most.

See if they are available for a new project and pay attention to how you feel when you speak with them. If it's a match, you'll know. You'll feel excited to get started! There will be a *zing* and a new sense of possibility.

QUESTION: How often should I talk to my ghostwriter?

ANSWER: If you're working on a book together, I think once per week or twice per month is a good target. For shorter content like an ebook, schedule one longer meeting (60-90 minutes), and one quick follow-up a week or two later. Every ghostwriter works a little bit differently, so ask about process on your discovery calls.

QUESTION: Do ghostwriters ever work for royalties or profit-sharing?

ANSWER: It is very rare. Ghostwriting is generally fee-for-service, which means ghostwriters get paid upfront or in installments, not by collecting royalties. That said, everyone is different, so you can always ask individual writers.

I work solely for fees, never for royalties or profit-sharing. It's too uncertain and mama's got bills to pay. :)

QUESTION: How do I know if the ghostwriter I am talking to is good at their job?

ANSWER: Read their writing. Does the copy on their website make you nod or smile? Have you been following their social media posts and liking them? If they have book covers linked on their website, click through and download those books onto your e-reader. Check out a chapter or two...this is a big investment, after all.

If you're still not sure, hire the ghostwriter for a short sample project and see how it goes. Better to learn it's not a match right away than to try to break a big contract later on.

QUESTION: How can hiring a ghostwriter help my business?

ANSWER: Hiring a writer is a great idea. By creating and offering up more content (books, ebooks, or other), you're giving future clients a chance to get to know you and trust you. This will bring more prospects into your world and set the stage for a better engagement once they do hire you.

If you're a busy business owner or solopreneur, you've probably wanted to write your book for years. Hiring a ghostwriter is a way to announce that you are finally serious.

This one action changes "someday" into "today."

What other questions do you have? Shoot me an email and I'll answer ASAP:

Thanks for reading!

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