Even an old dinosaur like me appreciates the value of the internet in bringing people closer together. And that’s especially true in my line of work. If you’re looking for a ghostwriter in the UK or elsewhere, the world’s your oyster. You can work with your chosen ghost without ever even meeting them. This opens up all sorts of possibilities…
If you like working through the night, you can find a ghostwriter on the other side of the world who can log on to your chosen platform and speak to you when most UK ghostwriters are all tucked up in bed, clutching their copies of JR Moehringer’s latest.
Seven considerations to help you choose a UK ghostwriter
If you’re specifically looking for a UK ghostwriter, it’s liberating to know you can work remotely with anyone, from Cornwall to Caithness. You can choose from the cream of the UK’s ghostwriters without having to consider what their travel expenses are going to look like.
So, here are seven points to help you choose the right UK ghostwriter for your memoir or autobiography.
Get a good fit with your ghostwriter
With distance no object, you can choose a UK Ghostwriter on merit, and on ‘fit’. This notion of fit – or rapport – is the key to finding the right ghostwriter for you.
It’s liberating to be able to choose your preferred writing collaborator on the basis of their experience, their versatility, and their understanding of your needs, not on whether they can get over to yours in half an hour.
I suggest you consider their range of experience, evaluate the kinds of books they’ve worked on, and see if you think they’d be a good fit for your story. Moreover, make sure you find your ghostwriter easy to talk to, and make sure they’re a good and sympathetic listener.
Looking for a UK ghostwriter that’s close to home?
Just because you can choose a ghostwriter anywhere in the UK (or beyond) it doesn’t mean you have to cast your net far and wide…
You might want a UK ghostwriter that’s sufficiently local to you so that you can work with them in person. Of course, this comes down to personal preference. You might be fine with online meetings and telephone calls – I’ve worked with lots of clients that way too.
But there is something to be said for finding someone sufficiently local.
It might depend on your book. Perhaps you’re telling an area-specific story, in which case some local knowledge might be a good thing. Or you might be attempting a family history, and need a local ghostwriter to be able to pop in and meet other contributors to your book.
A remote ghostwriter you can still meet
If you find the perfect ghostwriter who lives a couple of hundred miles away, it might still be a good idea to meet them before you get started on your book.
This kind of getting-to-know-you meeting can be very useful for both parties. It isn’t where you’ll start the hard work on the book itself, but it’s where you’ll get a good sense of how you’ll work together.
Bear in mind that if you haven’t already agreed to work together, your ghostwriter may well charge for their time and travel.
A roaming UK ghostwriter
Suppose you want to work with a ghostwriter in person, but they live a couple of hundred miles away? You’ve searched for a ‘UK ghostwriter’ and the results deliver a writer with perfect pedigree and lots of suitable experience, but they’re simply too far away to conduct ongoing in-person interviewees.
There is a way to make this work.
Some of my clients like to spread their interview sessions out over the course of several weeks or even months. But if you’re happy to conduct all the interviews for your book over the course of a few days, I’ll book myself into the nearest B&B and we’ll get to grips with your story in two-to-three days of intensive interviews.
An accessible UK ghostwriter
When choosing your ghostwriter, think about how accessible they’re going to be. And this isn’t an issue of geography…
You might assume that because you’re working with a ghostwriter online, they’ll always be available. Or, if you’re working with a local ghostwriter, you might think you can arrange meetings at short notice. Whether you choose to work with a local ghostwriter, or someone a bit further away, start out by discussing the kind of working relationship you want.
Ask your ghostwriter to give you an idea of their schedule over the next few weeks and months so that you can plan a working relationship that will work for both of you. See if they have a policy for answering emails within a set period of time. Find out how amenable they are to unplanned phone calls. Do they work out of hours? At weekends?
Before you sign up to work with a ghostwriter carry out your due diligence and make sure you’re both on the same page.
Don’t believe the hype!
I’m always wary of websites that proclaim themselves to be a ‘top-rated’ ghostwriting agency, without giving you any sense of what that actually means. Top rated by clients? Agencies? Publishers?
There are even companies out there who say they’re the ghostwriting agency of choice for all the UK’s publishers. Trying to win clients for your ghostwriting services shouldn’t feel like a game of poker, where every claim has to be challenged before it can be believed.
That kind of advertising makes me want to run a mile. I once worked with someone who told me to put award winning on their website. When I questioned what awards they’d won, they told me they would doubtless have won some awards by the time anyone queried it. Hmmm.
By contrast, and with as little hype as possible, I’m happy to promote myself as a ghostwriter who knows his onions. I haven’t won any awards, but I have written a lot of books for my clients. About 40 as a sole ghostwriter, or working in tandem with the named author of a book.
What about ghostwriting companies like Story Terrace?
Story Terrace (other ghostwriting companies are available) use a network of writers across the UK and elsewhere. Chances are, there’s a Story Terrace ghostwriter living not too many miles away from you. That’s good news if you want to be able to work with your ghostwriter in-person. They offer a remote service too though, if that works for you.
In many cases, you will have a choice of ghostwriters to choose from. They’ll pitch for the job of working on your book, so you can decide whose approach feels right to you. It’s obviously in the interest of Story Terrace and other ghostwriting companies to keep their clients happy, and that means working with ghostwriters they really trust; you’ll be in good hands whoever you work with.
As with many other freelance ghostwriters, I also do occasional work for other agencies and organisations, including Story Terrace. I know that they vet their ghostwriters carefully, and assigns each one a level of seniority based on their ghostwriting experience. So, if you were looking for a senior level ghostwriter in Nottinghamshire, you’d find me!
Your UK ghostwriter is out there waiting for you…
It might even be me! And if you’re interested in discussing what working with me might be like, choose a day and time and we’ll talk ghostwriting. If you’re particularly looking for a ghostwriter in your neck of the woods, I’m based in Southwell, Nottinghamshire in the East Midlands.
Whoever you choose, I do hope this has helped you narrow down your search for a ghostwriter to help you tell your story.