Do You Need a Ghostwriter or Just a Good Editor?

I am a book coach and a manuscript editor. I edit books for both individual authors and for a couple of publishing companies as a contractor, and I love it.

This puts me in touch with A LOT of aspiring or almost-published authors.

One thing I see over and over again is potential authors looking for ghostwriters. They ask about ghostwriting processes, prices, and how to find a good one.

Then I read their writing or hear their story and it becomes apparent that they really only need a strong editor.

Many — most — people have a story to tell or expertise to share. But a lot of them don’t consider themselves ‘writers.’

They figure since they are not professional writers, they can’t write a book — or at least, not a good one.

But when you know what you want to say, you are the BEST person to write it.

You’re the only one who can make sure nothing is missing and the content is correct.

These people don’t need a ghostwriter interviewing them for hours and then figuring out how to say it in their own words.

They need to write it all down. Make an outline and write their manuscript.

Then they need a really good editor to come behind them and polish their words.

A ghostwriter takes the information out of your head and writes it for you.

An editor takes your content and makes it better.

An editor can help you with the manuscript structure — something many first-time authors struggle with — and help make it more readable and easy to digest.

A good editor will find areas where the manuscript needs more (or less!) explanation, examples, or details.

An editor can identify filler or unnecessary fluff and suggest removing it.

A good editor will also help with rewording or word choices to make sentences or paragraphs read better.

Ghostwriting is a lot more expensive and takes much longer than many people realize.

If you have the ability to put words on the page, and most importantly, tell the story or share the information you want to get across, then you may be better suited looking for a strong editor instead of a ghostwriter.

[And if you’re wondering what the difference is between a ghostwriter and a co-author, see here for more detailed information.]

If you have been thinking about this, examine what you want to achieve with a ghostwriter or if maybe a strong editor is a better fit for your needs.

Check out my brand new book Concept to Conclusion: How to Write a Book and learn everything you need to know to conceive of, outline, write, publish, and market a book!

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Written by

Entrepreneur, writer, editor, book coach, cat lover, weirdo, optimist. Author of “Write. Get Paid. Repeat.” & “Concept to Conclusion.” jyssicaschwartz.com

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