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July 22, 2024
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Questions to Ask a Ghostwriter Before Hiring By Lisa Montalto

Image Commercially Licensed from: DepositPhotos

By: United Press

Before hiring a ghostwriter, it’s important to understand what they do. A ghostwriter is someone who writes as you and remains anonymous. Most of what you read today, whether a celebrity memoir, political bio, or self-help book, was more than likely written by a ghostwriter. However, it’s not just the famous or high-profile who use ghostwriters. This technique is often used by those with hectic lives or those who simply do not have the writing skills necessary for the work they want to put out.

If this is your first time hiring a ghostwriter, there are necessary questions to ask a potential candidate before working with them. It’s not easy to hire the right ghostwriter because it requires trust. Since they’re representing you, it’s important that they can adopt your voice and style. 

You may have your own questions in mind, but below are some questions that will benefit you before hiring your ghostwriter. 

What is your area of expertise?

Does your ghostwriter specialize in blogs and articles? Are they more of a novelist or memoir writer? Do they write screenplays or adapt novels to screenplays? Are they an SEO expert? Depending on your needs, this is a great opening question.

How long have you been a ghostwriter?

This question establishes their experience level. You’ll want someone who has at least a year under their belt.

Do you know anything about the subject at hand?

If your ghostwriter knows very little about your subject, it will take them longer to research and they may charge you more for their time. It’s better to find a ghostwriter who is well versed in your subject matter. Whether it is fiction or nonfiction, this is an integral part of ascertaining their baseline before you begin. 

What is your current workload?

If you are paying good money to hire a ghostwriter, logic would dictate you don’t want them working on multiple projects, stealing focus from your project. Ghostwriters work freelance, so they always work on more than one project, but if they’re overloaded, it can be a problem. By inquiring about how many projects they’re working on and setting milestones, you can get the best out of your ghostwriter.

What is your pricing structure?

Before even knowing what they charge, it’s important to know how they charge. Are they charging by the page, by the hour, or by the word, and how are they calculating these charges? Many ghostwriters will also include revisions and edits, as well as research time and proper formatting. It’s important to know this all upfront, along with when payment is due, so there is no confusion there later. Setting milestones is a great idea so you pay for performance. You can set how many pages you want to receive before making a payment or how many words or hours.

What is your timeline?

It’s always difficult to know exactly how long a project may take since an article would take less time than turning out your life story. An experienced ghostwriter who has done all of this before will have a baseline of how long every type of project might take. There can always be delays due to issues with content, tech, research, or personal issues, but you always want to get a general idea of the length of time a project will take. 

Once you have your answers to these questions and some of your personal questions, you will have a better idea of who to hire. Remember that communication is key. You want to make sure you click. Working with someone that you feel comfortable with will make things go more smoothly. You want to hire a ghostwriter who communicates with updates, delays, and ideas.

The best way to start your search for a ghostwriter is by finding a ghostwriting services company that has already vetted their ghostwriters, such as Ghostwriter’s Central. Since they’ve worked with their ghostwriters before, they have feedback from clients and can recommend the best ghostwriter for your particular project. Then you can conduct your own interview and get a sense of their working style. Once you’ve chosen your ghostwriter, make sure to provide what they need to complete your project, including information about you or your business, notes and phone calls.

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