Don't Do It Yourself

How to Hire a Ghostwriter for Your Book

How to Hire a Book Ghostwriter

Imagine you've got this brilliant book idea simmering in your mind, but when it comes to penning it down, you're hitting a wall.

That's exactly where I found myself not too long ago. Then, I discovered the game-changer: hiring a ghostwriter.

A book ghostwriter converted my ideas into words beautifully, maintaining my voice throughout.

Along the way, I learned some important tips for hiring a book ghostwriter.

Key Takeaways:

  • Hiring a ghostwriter for a book can cost between $2,000- $30,000 or more.
  • Identify your book's core message and target audience before searching.
  • You can hire ghostwriters on freelance marketplaces, professional referrals, ghostwriting agencies, and writing communities.
  • Establish a clear and detailed contract with your ghostwriter.
  • Maintain regular communication, set clear milestones, and be open to revisions.

Our Book Ghostwriting Service

Book Idea
  • A proven track record of satisfied clients - (check out some testimonials)
  • Will write autobiographies, biographies, business books, blogs, newsletters, and more. 
    • Professional audiobook recording and translation are available
  • Our approach covers the entire process, from planning to launch. 

Learn More

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What Is a Book Ghostwriter?

What Is a Book Ghostwriter

book ghostwriter takes your ideas and turns them into a book, writing everything in a way that sounds just like you.

A talented ghostwriter makes sure that the book reflects your voice and message, even though they're the ones doing the writing. This can be a huge help if you're short on time, not confident in your writing skills, or just stuck on how to get your ideas down on paper.

There are two main types of ghostwriting:

Traditional: In traditional ghostwriting, the ghostwriter writes based on what you tell them. Then, you review what they've written to make sure it matches your vision.

Enhanced ghostwriting: is a bit more involved. The ghostwriter also helps you develop your ideas, structure your book, and sometimes even do research.

No matter which type you choose, the goal is to end up with a book, whether that's a memoir, autobiography (learn about the difference in this post), business, or children's book, that feels like it's truly yours.

Importance of Finding the Right Ghostwriter

Importance of Finding Right Ghostwriter

The ghostwriter must capture your story and your voice and essence, too.

That’s why it’s so important to find a writing partner who understands you and whose words resonate with your intended audience.

When the match is right, the ghostwriter becomes an extension of you, ensuring that every page of your book feels yours authentically.

However, a mismatched collaboration can lead to several issues:

  • Loss of Authenticity: If the ghostwriter's style doesn't align with yours, the book might not sound like you, which can disconnect you from your audience.
  • Misinterpretation of Ideas: A ghostwriter who doesn't fully grasp your vision can misrepresent your concepts, leading to a final product that doesn't reflect your original intent.
  • Frustration and Delays: Working with the wrong ghostwriter can cause frustration, leading to endless revisions and potentially delaying the publication of your book.
  • Additional Costs: Misalignment might result in extra costs if you need to hire a new ghostwriter or make extensive changes.

Therefore, investing time in finding the right ghostwriter is essential for the success and authenticity of your book.

How the Ghostwriting Process Works

How the Ghostwriting Process Works

Initial Consultation

You and the ghostwriter discuss your book idea, objectives, and expectations. During the first meeting, you establish a connection and ensure the ghostwriter understands your vision and voice.

Detailed Planning

Outline the book's structure, key messages, and tone. Set a solid foundation, aligning the ghostwriter with your goals and setting them up to best capture the essence of your message.

Research and Interviews

If your book requires research or interviews, conduct these to gather the necessary information. Depending on the extent of the ghostwriting contract, they may participate in research. This step is particularly important for non-fiction works, ensuring the content is accurate.

Writing and Review

The ghost writer then begins drafting chapters, sharing them with you for feedback. An iterative process ensures the content aligns with your expectations and maintains your unique voice.


Based on your feedback, the ghost writer makes revisions, refining the book. Collaborative editing ensures the final product resonates with your intended audience and represents your message.

Final Approval

Once the manuscript meets your satisfaction, complete your final approval process. Confirm that the book accurately reflects your voice and message, readying it for the next stages of publishing.

How Much Does a Book Ghostwriter Cost?

How Much Does a Book Ghostwriter Cost

Here's a general breakdown of what a book ghostwriter may cost:

Short eBooks or Novellas

For shorter eBooks or novellas (around 10,000 to 30,000 words), prices range from $2,000 to $10,000. These are typically less complex and require less time to write, which is reflected in the cost.

Standard Non-Fiction or Fiction Books

A standard-length book (approximately 50,000 to 80,000 words) may cost anywhere from $10,000 to $30,000. The price can vary based on the required research required and the level of expertise for the subject matter.

Comprehensive or Specialized Books

For longer or more specialized books, such as technical manuals, detailed non-fiction, or extensive narratives (over 80,000 words), the cost typically ranges from $30,000 to $100,000 or more. These projects often require significant research, expertise, and time, justifying the higher price.

Factors Influencing Cost

  • Experience of the Ghostwriter: More experienced ghostwriters typically charge higher rates due to their proven track record and expertise.
  • Research Required: Books requiring extensive research or interviews will be more expensive.
  • Book Complexity: Complex topics or intricate narratives require more effort and time, impacting the price.
  • Market Demand: Highly sought-after ghostwriters can command higher fees.

What To Do Before Looking for a Ghostwriter

What To Do Before Looking for Ghostwriter

Most ghostwriters primarily handle the writing phase of your book. To streamline the process, it helps to handle these steps first:

Define Your Book's Core Message

You should have a clear understanding of your book's core message. What key idea or story do you want to convey to your readers? A well-defined message will guide you in finding a ghostwriter who can accurately reflect your vision.

Identify Your Target Audience

Understanding who you are writing for is essential. Different audiences have varying preferences and expectations, which can significantly influence the tone and style of your book. Knowing your audience helps you select a ghostwriter who can connect with your readers.

Establish Your Objectives

What are your goals for this book? Are you looking to educate, entertain, inspire, or persuade your audience? Your objectives will shape the content, structure, and voice of the book. You should be clear about what you aim to achieve.

Outline Your Book

Creating a basic outline or a rough structure of your book provides a solid foundation for your collaboration with a ghostwriter. It doesn't have to be detailed, but having a framework can streamline the writing process and help bring your intended vision to life.

Budget Planning

Determine your budget for the ghostwriting project. Knowing how much you are willing to invest helps you narrow down your search to ghostwriters who fit within your financial parameters.

Research and Reflect

Research more about the ghostwriting process and reflect on what you want from the collaboration. Understanding the dynamics of ghostwriting will prepare you for a productive partnership.

Where to Find Quality Ghostwriters for a Book Project

Where to Find Quality Ghostwriters for Book Project

Method NameAverage CostBest forProsCons
Ghostwriting Agencies/Services$10,000 - $100,000+Authors looking for full-service support• Professional vetting of writers
• Comprehensive project management
• Higher cost
• Less direct communication with the writer
Freelance Marketplaces$2,000 - $30,000+Authors seeking a range of options• Wide selection of writers
• Transparent reviews and ratings
• Flexible pricing
• Time-consuming to vet candidates
• Quality varies widely
Professional Referrals$5,000 - $50,000+Authors preferring trusted recommendations• Typically higher quality writers
• Personal endorsement
• Limited options
• Potentially higher cost
Writing Communities$2,000 - $30,000+Authors seeking community recommendations• Access to passionate writers
• Peer reviews and insights
• Requires community engagement
• Variable writer availability and quality

To find a quality ghostwriter for your book project can be a straightforward process, you must know where to look.

  • Ghostwriting Agencies/Services: These agencies specialize in connecting authors with professional ghostwriters. They vet their writers thoroughly, ensuring you get someone skilled in your book's genre.
  • Freelance Marketplaces: Freelance writing websites like Upwork and Fiverr, offer a vast pool of freelance writers, including ghostwriters. You can browse profiles, review portfolios, and read client feedback to find a writer who suits your project's needs.
  • Professional Referrals: Sometimes, the best way to find a ghostwriter is through a recommendation. Ask within your network or industry for referrals to trusted writers who have proven their ability to deliver quality work.
  • Writing Communities: Online forums, writing groups, and associations can be excellent resources for finding experienced ghostwriters. Members often share leads and recommendations.

Our Book Ghostwriting Service

Book Idea
  • A proven track record of satisfied clients - (check out some testimonials)
  • Will write autobiographies, biographies, business books, blogs, newsletters, and more. 
    • Professional audiobook recording and translation are available
  • Our approach covers the entire process, from planning to launch. 

Learn More

Evaluating Potential Ghostwriters

Evaluating Potential Ghostwriters

Qualities to Look for

When evaluating potential ghostwriters, consider these key qualities:

  • Genre Expertise: Look for a ghostwriter with a proven track record in your book's genre. They should understand the nuances and expectations of your audience.
  • Adaptability in Writing Style: The ghostwriter should be able to adapt their writing style to match your voice and the tone suitable for your book.
  • Strong Communication Skills: Effective communication is crucial for a successful collaboration. They should understand and accurately translate your ideas into writing.
  • Professionalism and Reliability: A professional ghostwriter should respect deadlines, provide regular updates, and be responsive to your communications.
  • Positive Testimonials and References: Check for positive feedback from previous clients. Reviews showcase the ghostwriter's ability to deliver quality work and their professionalism.
  • Understanding of Your Subject Matter: The ghostwriter doesn't need to be an expert in your field, but a good grasp of the subject matter ensures authenticity and depth in your book.
  • Flexibility and Problem-Solving Skills: Look for someone who is flexible and can navigate the challenges that may arise during the writing process.

Questions to Ask

When interviewing potential ghostwriters, consider asking these questions:

  • Can you share some examples of books you've ghostwritten in my genre?
  • How do you adapt your writing style to match the author's voice?
  • What is your process for gathering information and understanding my book's subject matter?
  • How do you handle feedback and revisions during the writing process?
  • Can you walk me through your typical timeline for a project like this?
  • How do you ensure confidentiality and handle rights to the content?
  • Can you provide references or testimonials from previous clients?

Always request samples of their work to assess their writing style and compatibility with your vision.

Finalize the Agreement

Finalize Agreement

A clear and comprehensive contract sets the foundation for a transparent and effective working relationship. The contract should outline all of the key details of the working relationship to protect both parties.

A few things to always include in a book ghostwriting agreement include:

  • Scope of Work: Define the project's scope, including the book's genre, length, and any specific requirements or expectations.
  • Deliverables: Detail the expected deliverables, including the manuscript's format, chapter breakdowns, and any additional content (forewords or appendices).
  • Timelines: Establish a timeline for the project. Lay out milestones, deadlines for drafts and revisions, and the final submission date.
  • Compensation: Outline the payment terms, including the total fee, payment schedule, and any conditions related to revisions or additional work.
  • Rights and Ownership: Specify the rights transfer, confidentiality terms, and how the ghostwriter will be credited (if at all).
  • Termination Clause: Include terms under which either party can terminate the contract and the consequences of such termination.

Tips for Managing Your Ghostwriting Book Project

Tips for Managing Ghostwriting Project

Effectively managing your ghostwriting book project ensures a successful collaboration and a high-quality final product. Here are some tips to help you work seamlessly with your ghostwriter:

  • Set Clear Milestones: Break down the project into manageable sections with specific milestones. This helps track progress and keep the project on schedule.
  • Schedule Regular Check-ins: Regular updates or meetings keeps communication open and allows you to address any concerns or adjustments promptly.
  • Provide Detailed Feedback: Offer clear, constructive feedback. Specific comments can guide your ghostwriter and improve the manuscript's quality.
  • Be Open to Revisions: Writing is a process that often requires refining. Be prepared for multiple drafts and revisions to achieve the best possible outcome.
  • Maintain a Shared Vision: Regularly revisit and discuss the book's core message and objectives to ensure alignment throughout the writing process.
  • Foster a Positive Relationship: Building a good rapport with your ghostwriter makes the process more enjoyable and productive for both parties.

Conclusion: Hire the Right Ghostwriter for Your Book

Hire the Right Ghostwriter

Hiring a ghostwriter can turn your book idea into something special that readers will love. Start by knowing what you want your book to say and who you want to read it.

Then, pick a ghostwriter who understands your style and topic. Make sure you both agree on what needs to be done, how long it will take, and how much it will cost by writing it all down in a contract.

Keep talking to your ghostwriter, give clear feedback, and be ready to make changes to get the best book.

If you're ready to start your book journey with a ghostwriter, check out our service below:

Our Book Ghostwriting Service

Book Idea
  • A proven track record of satisfied clients - (check out some testimonials)
  • Will write autobiographies, biographies, business books, blogs, newsletters, and more. 
    • Professional audiobook recording and translation are available
  • Our approach covers the entire process, from planning to launch. 

Learn More

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I hire a ghostwriter for my book?

Identify your book's needs, search for ghostwriters with experience in your genre, evaluate their portfolios, discuss your project, and ensure alignment on terms before signing a contract.

How much does it cost to hire someone to write your book?

Costs vary widely, from $2,000 for short eBooks to over $30,000 for full-length, detailed manuscripts, depending on the book's length and complexity.

Is it ethical to hire a ghostwriter?

Yes, it's ethical to hire a ghostwriter as long as there is transparency about the process, and the ghostwriter is acknowledged or compensated according to the agreement.

Where should I look for a qualified book ghostwriter?

Search on professional platforms, writing associations, or freelance websites, and consider referrals from industry contacts to find experienced and reliable ghostwriters.