“A ghostwriter is, at once, a creative artist, a project manager, a best friend and confidante, a therapist, an industry insider, a publishing guide, a writing and life coach, a mentor, and a business person.”
~ Claudia Suzanne
If you’re looking for what, exactly, a ghostwriter does for a manuscript, it’d be impossible to simplify into a one page answer, let alone one sentence. For the simple version, read Why You Need A Ghostwriter
Q: What are your ghostwriting rates?
A: That depends on the project. I never quote before I read – it’s one of my cardinal rules. However, if you insist on a ballpark figure, it will cost somewhere between $500 and $150,000.
Q: Are there any prices you CAN give me ahead of time?
A: Yes. An A&R costs $500. A proposal for a standard non-fiction book costs $5,000. Mentoring or consultation are $150/hr.
Q: How long does an A&R take?
A: In general it will take me a week to read the material and put the report together. Our discussion of it may take significantly longer.
Q: How long does a Proposal take?
A: About six weeks to do a complete proposal.
Q: What is a proposal?
A: A proposal is the document you send to a publisher or agent. You cannot land a major publishing contract without an agent, and no legitimate publisher, (large or small) or agent will even consider reading through an unsolicited manuscript. You must, must, must send a proposal first.
Q: What is an A&R?
A: A&R stands for Analysis and Recommendation. I read your manuscript, go over the material with a fine tooth comb, and give you a written report of what the manuscript does and doesn’t need, and exactly how to fix what needs fixing. This also tends to involve a very long conversation and consultation about said issues and also what you thought were issues but in actual fact are perfect just the way they are.
Q: Isn’t is unethical to have someone write my book for me?
A: Absolutely not. I do not do any of the research, these are not my ideas, concepts, characters, points, or concepts. It’s not my knowledge, it’s yours. My skill, your BOOK.
Q: I don’t really want to share credit.
A: That’s fine because I don’t take any. The book has your name and only your name. I take none of the royalties or advance. My fees are for the work I do, and only the work I do. I don’t put my name on your book.
Q: What if I want to credit you as my editor?
A: No, but thank you. I don’t put my name on your book.
Q: What kind of training do you have?
A: Actually, the only kind there is. I earned my certification from LCI, a division of Wambtac Communications LLC, in a program named, appropriately enough, Ghostwriter Certification Training. I was one of the lucky ones able to work directly with Claudia Suzanne, the program’s creator, as I understand that starting this coming semester, the program will be offered through Cal State Long Beach, and no longer available privately.
If your question isn’t addressed here, you can ask me directly by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling 800-641-3936