Ghostwriting and folding egg whites in batter: a tale of two Julia Childs

How do you blend the idealist writer in you with pragmatic demands of  ghostwriting? Kristin Johnson draws inspiration from none other than Julia Child.

In ghostwriting, how do you blend your own ability and insights with your client’s story and voice? You could learn from America’s greatest ghostwriter, who has a hit musical named after him.

Also, you can learn from Julia Child (we’ve already discussed in this post on how Joan Rivers can help you become a better writer), and from the movie “Julie/Julia,” starring Meryl Streep and Amy Adams. [Read more…]

Ghostwriter contracts 101

So you want to hire a ghostwriter? Here is what you should find in a ghostwriter contract.

Your search for a ghostwriter is complete. Now it’s time to roll up your sleeves and get to work. What comes first? The contract, of course. Make sure that the contract covers everything important. Here is a quick guide of what to watch for in a ghostwriting contract. [Read more…]

Confessions of a political ghostwriter

Most of what politicians say or write are their own thoughts to a large degree.  But that doesn’t mean they write their own words.

Have you ever wondered how politicians can be everywhere and do everything all at once?  If there is an official opening or a community barbecue, there they are!

When the legislature is in session and there’s a vote or a debate, there they are!

When Committees hold hearings or debate legislation, there they are!

When a local business or community group wants a meeting.  When a constituent has a problem with a government department.  When a national association does the rounds of legislators…there they are!

And yet they respond to dozens or hundreds of letters every day, send out bulletins to their constituents and make speeches.

They can’t be everywhere at the same time, or can they? [Read more…]

Who hires a ghostwriter?

Everybody knows that some people hire ghostwriters. But it might surprise you to discover who some of those “some people” are.

This might seem an odd question – “Who hires a ghostwriter?” – and yet there do appear to be some popular misconceptions about who hires a ghostwriter. Most people have a vague idea of who works with them, but few people are really aware of how widespread their services are. [Read more…]

16 ways to drive a ghostwriter stark raving mad!

Have you ever asked yourself, “I wonder what’s the best way to torture a ghostwriter?”  If so, here are 16 handy ways to drive your ghostwriter stark raving bonkers.

Over the years, I’ve worked with hundreds of clients.  Many of them have been for small projects, such as writing or editing a press release.  Or writing a best-man, father-of-the-groom or maid-of-honor speech (I love writing those!).  But many have been for major projects, and when I say “major”, I generally mean writing a book or occasionally a screenplay. [Read more…]

What is a ghostwriter?

Oddly enough, this is a question that seems to confuse a lot of people.  Just what is a ghostwriter?

People come to me seeking a ghostwriter, but they are not completely sure what one is. People come asking for a writer, but are not sure whether it is a ghostwriter they really want. What is the difference between a writer and a ghostwriter?

Well, a writer is someone who writes. In case you missed that definition, I explained it here. [Read more…]

Being Uncertain Means You’re Alive

Client-ghostwriter collaboration is like courtship. It always starts off with uncertainty, then subsides when you slide into that rhythm of collaboration.

In listening to The Moth Podcast, I came across this quote:

“Being Uncertain Means You’re Alive”.

Because my fingers are super-glued to Google, I googled “uncertainty in a writing career” because I felt a blog post cooking. Surprise: I found a blog post from Just Write Dammit addressing this topic. More on that in just a moment. I know…there’s nothing like a dash of suspense to liven up a post about uncertainty–which, coincidentally, is often part of a writer’s job description, especially if you write fiction. [Read more…]