WRITING STREAMS OF INCOME 5: GHOSTWRITING
I tell people that my second best source of income is ghostwriting and I am serious about it. In December, I wrote 3, this month, I’m writing 2 and I’ve had to turn down some offers.
So, what is ghostwriting?
Ghostwriting presents the ideas of an author in the words of a stand-in writer. The author has something to share, but may lack the time, inclination or skill to attempt the writing task.
A ghostwriter helps bring out what the author wishes to communicate. Remaining outside of the content, the skilled ghostwriter presents the viewpoint of the author, while tuning the writing style to reflect the personality and content of the author. The final piece rightly belongs to the author and not to the ghostwriter. – Villagehiker.com
In simple terms, ghostwriting entails writing for someone and all credits going to the person. You are the writer, he or she is the author.
When you ghostwrite, there is a legal binding that states that nobody should know that you are the writer. If you have followed me over time, you may hear me talking about how many books I have ghostwritten and my experiences with ghostwriting but that is all the information I can give. You will not hear me talking about the contents of the books I have written.
Well, it’s not only books that are ghostwritten these days, blog posts are too. In fact, any piece of writing you do that does not give you credit is a ghostwritten work.
Let’s get down to how to get ghostwriting clients. My best source of clients has been referrals- people I have written for before who referred me to others. Another way I’ve gotten clients has been from my social media profiles. People read the way I write and the way I present stories, and they want me to write for them. Here’s a 3rd avenue that I have explored- pitching people. I usually go for pastors and pastors’ wives, industry leaders and people who are trailing a path (for instance, a female in a male-dominated career). I start by making them understand how much impact they are making and how much this impact can be etched in the hearts of their followers. Here’s an example:
I chat a pastor and I tell her how much she has been a blessing and how much her words have impacted me and the people who follow her. I ask her if she has ever thought of writing a book and I tell her why it is important she does so. She has the audience and she has the content, all she needs is someone who will help her put the content together. I have a prospect.
You can also do this with an influencer who constantly dishes out content in the social media space. You can tell him how much all his contents will go a long way in affecting people, and the fact that people can access his contents in one place while he makes money out of it. And there you are with a prospect.
One big challenge people have with ghostwriting is the moral backing. Some people think it’s fraudulent to write a piece and have someone else get credit for it. Well, this is one area I cannot delve into because morality is highly dependent on knowledge and exposure.
As-is with every stream of income I have described here, your biggest PR manager is you. You are the one to blow your trumpet and let people know what you do. You can start today and let your followers know that you are also a ghostwriter.
It’s still your “missing in action” writer love.