I use the term Process to describe the act of working together.
Any great journey is a process between the adventurer and the path that they walk. Producing a book, from any point in the process, is a journey.
Whether I am working from scratch on a complete memoir or helping to reshape an existing manuscript, the act of working together requires commitment from both sides. Ultimately it is all about connection and trust.
In order to understand your needs I must connect with your vision and goals.
I will respect your vision yet work with direct and honest guidance towards how to craft your story to its greatest possible realisation.
Ghostwriting is more than just taking a person's story and producing it on a page. The ghost has to be aware of every part of the jigsaw. The most important element is the connection between author and ghost but the ultimate potential of the finished product is always in mind.
How will we work together?
It depends on the nature of the project. For a complete memoir I would highly recommend we meet in person and preferably spend 10-20 hours (over the course of a week or two) in each other's company. This serves as the 'Getting to know' period and also the bulk of the interviews covering the complete story.
I am based in Cyprus but regularly travel the world; your destination is no issue towards the construction of the book.
Editing projects do not usually require in person meetings and email or Zoom/Skype is often sufficient to achieve the desired results.
How do we communicate once the interviews are completed?
Initially by email but then by phone or Zoom/Skype if necessary. Some clients like regular calls; others prefer to be updated at set milestones. In all cases, the client will receive regular text to make sure the process is following the preferred vision.
Can you help to arrange publication?
For an additional fee, I can put together a query and a proposal, and send them out to agents on your behalf. It must be stated that there is no guarantee of publication.
All books I choose to work on involve a high profile figure or someone with the means to present their work in a wide ranging manner, meaning self-publication is a solid alternative.
What are your payment terms?
I follow terms suggested by the Society of Authors, of which I am a member. They suggest the client pays 50 percent at the start of the project and the remainder on delivery of the manuscript but I can offer flexibility. Depending on the project, payments in thirds or quarters are acceptable.
How long will it take for my manuscript to be ready?
It depends on the requirements of the client first and foremost. I can work supremely fast (3 months or less) if I have availability and the project demands it. Usually however, most books are completed within a 6-12 month period.
It is also possible to book ahead for up to 2 years. It is also worth being aware of correct timing when it comes to pitching manuscripts to agents, and secondly that mostly, publishers are always at least 12 months ahead in their thinking of release dates.
Are you a co-writer or ghostwriter?
Both. I can work as either. With ghostwriting, I am working from interview sources and material from the client and crafting them into a manuscript.
As co-writer the boundaries are much looser. Often it involves the client having some material, which we can draw upon, as well as working together to write new material. In many cases there is also a back and forth of written material from the client which I edit.
Will your name be on the book?
It really depends. Most of the time, the client takes sole credit, particularly if the work is a straight ghostwritten work.
In many cases I have co-authored a book, but actually written much more than 50% of the material. This happens often, as the client likes to take full credit for the book.
It is therefore best to discuss this at the outset.
You now know many of the basics of what is required for your project as well as my credentials for producing the exact type of work you require.
If you are interested in discussing a collaboration initially Zoom or Skype is a very convenient way to get to know the client and develop the project.
Please note, I do not work for 'Royalties only' projects or on a contingency basis.
To ask a question not answered here, or to request a free consultation email Paul here.
© 2019 Paul Stenning