When was the last time you watched a movie or read a book and thought about how you could have done well as a storyteller? After all, imagination has no bounds. You don’t need to be in the book business to have your name on a book.
In fact, you don’t need to be linked to arts or literature at all.
The mind is a place that lives beyond the confines of what society deems as creative. Some of the most brilliant creative minds of the literary world had day jobs that would never have you imagine anything remotely interesting, let alone entertaining. Yet, the likes of Faulkner—who was a postmaster—have successfully written themselves into the pages of history as master novelists.
One could argue that their creativity was guided at the helm by their writing skills.
After all, not everyone who is creative will also have the skills necessary to share their interesting ideas with the world. And as unfortunate as that is in an individual capacity, it is not a setback that cannot be resolved.
Fiction ghostwriting services exist for the sole purpose of assisting those who have creative ideas that need sharing.
What is that, you ask? Well, in this blog, we will do a deep dive into the world of fiction ghostwriting and how it could very well be the way you find yourself entering—and hopefully ruling—the literary world.
What are fiction ghostwriting services?
Like all its other types, fiction ghostwriting is when an independent writer is commissioned to collaborate on a fiction book with the understanding that they would not assume credit for that work.
Since the genre of fiction is very diverse, housing a large number of subcategories, the world of fiction ghostwriting is just as big.
This is why fiction ghostwriters sometimes list their genre of specialty in their personal profile or may market as only a specific type of ghostwriter—for instance, they may call themselves a science-fiction ghostwriting expert.
Unlike non-fiction writing—especially one that has biographical undertones—fiction ghostwriting can be much more of an independent task.
Veteran ghostwriters can understand your idea and then do their own brainstorming to create an outline rather than relying on you for information. Obviously, as a ghost, their job is to bring your ideas to life without polluting them with their own thoughts.
A good fiction-writing ghost would not add their ideas to your story without running them by you first.
Do you need a fiction ghostwriter?
Let’s say you have an amazing idea for a book and received enough praise for creative writing in college to know that you would perhaps do a stellar job should you ever sit down to write a book. And for you to realize the catch in that sentence, you only need to recognize that even as a hypothetical, the chances of your ideas being solemnized in literature depend on you finding the time to write them down.
Being a full-time author is not a luxury most first-time writers can afford.
And having a day job only means that burnout, writer’s block, and loss of interest are just around the corner for your new hobby. Well, this is where a fiction ghostwriter can help—by taking your ideas and carrying your voice out to an audience.
A good ghostwriter will make sure that they understand your reasons for hiring them and will work to ensure that you are completely satisfied with the process.
However, if lack of time or burnout isn’t the case for you and you still want to know if you need a ghostwriter for your fiction book, ask yourself the following questions:
- Do I have the writing expertise for this specific genre?
- Will I be able to collect my thoughts and put them down in a way my readers will understand?
- Can I effectively set and follow a writing schedule?
- Can I publish on my own without any external help?
- Can my idea make the cut without more fleshing out?
If you answer “No,” to any of the questions above, it’s a clear sign that you need to enlist the help of a fiction ghostwriter.
How to hire a fiction ghostwriter for hire
If you’re continuing on reading, we assume that you’ve realized that a ghostwriter will make achieving your publishing dreams easy. To get you started on finding the right fit for your book, here are some things to consider:
Set a budget
Before you go around shopping for ghostwriters, you need to know that it’s going to cost you. Instead of starting your search and getting overwhelmed by the different charges of different writers, go in with a budget in mind and only consider candidates who fit the bill—quite literally.
Remember: a good ghostwriter may charge you more, but the end result will be worth it!
Determine your own working style
There’s a difference in working styles when working on your own and when collaborating with someone else—especially if they bank on you for ideas and guidance. Knowing your management style is very important before onboarding a ghostwriter.
If you’re a micromanager, you will probably need weekly updates from your ghost.
However, if you like to keep a more hands-off approach, it would be perfect if you paired up with someone who takes their own time, compiles the entire first draft, and then submits it for your feedback.
Identify the genre of your book
As we said, different fiction ghostwriters specialize in different niches. While one might be excellent at romance writing or fantasy novels, they might struggle with horror or historical fiction. Knowing what genre your idea falls under will prove essential in narrowing down the candidates for writing it.
If your book falls under multiple categories, try to narrow down the main theme and what subcategory it belongs to.
Remember, only someone who excels in your subgenre can bring out the best in your book. And to find the best, you need to know what you’re looking for!
Decide: freelancers or agency?
Run a search for “ghostwriter” on the internet, and you will be overrun by results. As popular as the profession has become, it has made it equally difficult and overwhelming to sift through all the options and find someone who qualifies based on merit.
With freelancing portals becoming popular, more and more individuals are now offering their services as ghosts.
This is offset by ghostwriting and publishing agencies that have been in business for decades. And therein lies the problem for most. While on the one hand, they have agencies that guarantee experienced, native writers; on the other hand, you have writers who will work with you without any middleman.
So, how do you choose?
Simple: assess your future needs. Will you continue to require help even after you’re done with the writing stage? Remember, publishing a book isn’t just about writing a draft, slapping a price tag on it, and placing it on a shelf.
There are at least three rounds of editing, formatting, book cover designing, and marketing standing between you and your book's profitability.
If you think these are steps you don’t need help with, it would be wise to go with a freelancer. You’ll have more control over the communication with the person directly working on your book—as opposed to agencies that use project and account managers as middlemen.
However, if you need help with the entire publishing process, hiring separate freelancers for each task will ultimately end up costing you a lot.
In that case, it is better to go with a publishing or ghostwriting agency that can offer you all of these services under one roof. As a bonus, companies sometimes also offer package deals if you take multiple services, making it more cost-efficient for you.
No matter how good your idea or how unique your world-building is, if not put right, it can cost you a spot in the literary hall of fame. Therefore, it is important to get professional help from experienced writers who have worked on award-winning manuscripts time and again!