Ghostwriters can bring your story to life

Imagine this scenario. Maxine was the first-ever female plumber in her area. As she progressed in her apprenticeship, nearly everyone she encountered was surprised to see a “girl plumber”. Many doubted her expertise. Over time, however, she discovered that her female clients felt much more comfortable with having a female “handyman” in their homes, and Maxine was inspired to found a company entirely staffed by the next generation of women plumbers. She gained unique insights into business and human nature in the process, and now that she’s about to retire, she is strongly considering writing her memoirs — knowing that they’ll inspire others and offer unique insights. 

The only problem? Maxine is heavily dyslexic and not that great with words — part of what drew her to plumbing in the first place. Rather than giving up on her dream, Maxine could choose to work with a ghostwriter, and still publish very successful memoirs. 

Ghostwriters are versatile professionals who are dedicated to getting other people’s stories across. Today, you can hire a ghostwriter to write anything from full-length non-fiction books to novels, and from academic papers to blog posts or strong personal statements. Ghostwriters ultimately take all your big ideas, and transform them into beautifully-written texts conveyed in your voice. Ghostwriters make story-telling accessible to everyone with the means to pay, and the nature of the teamwork that unfolds between clients and ghostwriters is often close and intimate. Hiring a ghostwriter is a legitimate way to tell your story. 

The only question is — how? How do you find the perfect ghostwriter for you?

1. Decide Precisely What Your Goals Are

Ghostwriters rely on your ideas; their aim is to convey your message in the way you want it to be told. Before you set out to find the perfect ghostwriter for you, decide, in as much detail as you can, what the final version of your work is going to look like. If you’re after a scientific article, you may provide all of the research, while your ghost will choose the words and you review them and offer feedback. If you are a busy industry expert hoping to publish a “how-to” book, you may offer an outline before allowing your ghostwriter to conduct research and in-depth interviews, If you are, like Maxine, hoping to publish your memoirs, your ghost may record the stories you tell them, and they’ll run with your experience from there. 

The more closely-defined your final goals are, the more successful a skilled ghostwriter will be in getting your unique message across. 

2. Finding Ghostwriter Candidates

Although a significant portion of the books and articles you read in your daily life will primarily be produced by ghostwriters, these professionals can be hard to find. Due to the sensitive nature of their work, ghostwriters may keep a low profile and sign non-disclosure agreements that prevent them from discussing their past work. 

If you are a high-profile professional looking for a ghostwriter to produce non-fiction for you, asking around in your own professional circles can be an excellent way to connect you to skilled ghostwriters. Those who don’t have this advantage can, however, turn to the internet to find a ghostwriter. You may find ghostwriter candidates by scouring the internet for ghostwriters within your target genre or niche, and there are even a few dedicated ghostwriter marketplaces. You can also, however, simply search for professional writers, review their portfolios, and approach those you feel a connection to about your ideas. Many experienced and highly-skilled writers could potentially be willing to engage in ghostwriting, and this path has the added advantage that the ghost will also have writing published under their own names, which you can then review. 

Finding a ghostwriter isn’t easy, but it can be a highly rewarding way to share your voice with the world. Don’t compromise, and keep looking until you find a ghostwriter you are comfortable with.

How to become a professional proofreader

The road to becoming a proofreader is one that requires careful planning. You need to cover the below-mentioned steps and do your best in every aspect. It might take time to get recognized and start getting gigs, but it will be worth it. Proofreaders are in high demand because a lot of people can write or want to write – but not all can proofread.

Being a professional proofreader gives you the chance to improve other people’s manuscripts and drafts. It’s a great responsibility so it’s only natural that you do your preparation first to avoid any nasty surprises later.

A proofreader’s proficiency isn’t typically judged by their work. “I proofread this particular book” doesn’t allow potential clients to measure your abilities. Therefore, you have to throw most of your weight into the preparation and qualification aspect.

Let’s see the 7-step journey of finding proofreading jobs.

Step 0: The qualifications and education you need

The right qualifications and education are very important. Many clients select between proofreaders based on these factors alone. A master’s in English or publishing will be great.

Step 1: Finding a job vs. being a freelancer

There are two ways you can go about things.

Being a freelancer allows you to set your own prices and work at your own time slot. This, however, comes with no promise of constant pay or work. A larger agency might be a better choice if you’re looking for financial stability and a constant stream of work.

If you go for a job then the employer might take a proofreading test after checking your qualifications. Do mock tests to better prepare yourself.

Step 2: Know the game

Know to proofread inside out. Read books on the art of proofreading. It’s so much more than just checking grammar and spelling errors.

You need to make valuable additions to a manuscript, provide the author with your insights, and point out otherwise hard-to-spot errors and awkward mistakes.

For example, if you are going to be reviewing fiction then it’s part of your job to also check for consistency and any plot holes.

Step 3: Proofread manuscripts for free to hone your skills

You can start to build your portfolio and accumulate experience by proofreading for free.

  • Proofread your own writing or older manuscripts.
  • Ask your friends if they have something in need of proofreading.
  • Advertise your free proofreading service on social media.
  • Find literature online such as fanfictions or short stories by unpublished authors and proofread them. First ask for permission, of course, unless if you’re doing it purely for practice and you won’t be sharing the work as part of your proofreading portfolio. 

Step 4: Competitor analysis 

Have competitors or inspirations. Follow them routinely and find out how they do what they do. It doesn’t necessarily mean that you should follow proofreading agencies as they don’t make their work open to the public.

What this means is following proofreaders for tips and tricks. Also, read plenty of books from reputable publishers – they are of course proofread. Try to find manuscripts for the same and compare the two.

Step 5: Work on a USP

Have a USP. What do you offer that others don’t?

This is completely personal and depends on your skills. You can’t make it big without USPs in most cases.

Step 6: Get your own platform online and chalk out the pricing

If you’re going the freelancer route then it’s important to have your own platform. It’s typical for proofreaders to advertise their services with free social media pages but professionals always have websites.

This is also the time when you chalk out the pricing details. Approximate the expenses after factoring in software and PC costs, education, bills, and a profit. You will be able to arrive at an hourly rate pretty easily with this. 

Step 7: Advertise and market your service

The last step is to put yourself out there. List yourself on freelancing websites. Have a social media presence. Perhaps spending a little on ads will net you good returns.

Marketing can be done both organically and with paid ads – the choice is up to you.