Linda Leon BMP

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Ghostwriting Clients

How Often Should You Follow Up with Potential Ghostwriting Clients?

Association of Ghostwriters
April 24, 2019

ghostwriting clients

Many ghostwriters aren’t sure exactly what to do after a promising phone discussion or email exchange with a ghostwriting client.
Should they send an email expressing thanks for the prospect’s time? Would mailing a handwritten note be more effective to keep them in the running for the work? Should they check back by phone after a few days? What’s the best approach?
There seems to be a lot of anxiety and doubt about the ideal follow-up process. Probably, because the frequency and timing of follow-up message varies by writer and by client.
However, in general, I would recommend following up at least three times.
First Follow Up
Within 24 hours of a phone discussion, video conference, or in-person meeting with a prospective client, you should send a note of thanks. It’s considered common courtesy, though today so few people send thank you notes that, if for no other reason, you should do this to set yourself apart.
If you had a phone call or video chat, a short email the next day reiterating your interest in the work, restating why you’re intrigued, throwing in an idea you may have had about the project, and saying that you’ll check in next week (unless the prospect has shared their timeline for a decision already) is a smart idea.
If you met in person, a handwritten note mailed to their office or home is a nice touch. Take two minutes to drop it in the mail.
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A Ghostwriter's Career

What It's Like To Ghostwrite Books

What it's Like to Ghostwrite Books

By  on Bustle

started my ghostwriting career as a favor to a family friend — the kind of favor that someone does for you, by pretending they need a favor from you. I was months out of graduate school and desperate for a writing gig; he was well-known in our community and wanted help finishing his memoir. Dozens and dozens of pages of notes, thousands of hours, and exactly 21 months later, I had written a book. It was someone else’s book, sure. But from beginning to end, I had arranged and rearranged every single word.

Each book was like a puzzle. Disjointed notes or audio files combined with the particular nuances of each client’s personality to create a story.

Then, as is wont to happen if you finally work up the confidence to say "I’m a writer" when people ask you what you do, it seemed like everyone around me wanted to write a book, or believed they had a book-worthy story to tell, including the woman I babysat for, my fitness instructor, the cashier whose lane I preferred at the grocery store, the guys who came to steam clean the carpeting in my new apartment, a young mom I had become friends with, and the old man who always seemed to be checking his mailbox at the same time I did.

Most of these aspiring memoirists weren’t serious, but one was. Suddenly, I had another gig. This time, I found myself faced with hours upon hours of audio recordings, all of which needed to be transcribed and turned into something resembling literature. Again, somehow, I did it.

Through a referral, I was offered another opportunity to ghostwrite a book, and then another. Each time I wrote faster, cleaner, and better. Each book was like a puzzle. Disjointed notes or audio files combined with the particular nuances of each client’s personality to create a story. All of these stories were published without my name on them.

It’s rare that I experience writers’ block when ghostwriting. Even in the instances when a client has given me practically nothing to go off of — a title, a table of contents, a general picture of who they are and where they come from — I’ve dug in and found a way to produce the material they want. (Once, I even ghost-wrote some material off of nothing more than the synopsis of a client’s favorite movie and their list of all the reasons they like it.)

Meanwhile, my own book — a novel that I’ve had in my head and written piecemeal (very minimal piecemeal) — has been languishing for almost a decade. I’ve been sketching various manifestations of its characters for even longer.