The Allure of the Ghost Writer

I was thinking the other day on my way to work about some of my unfinished novels. You see, I’ve got these great novels inside me, but I struggle to get them out. I just want to read the finished copy, because I really like the stories and the characters. I want good things for them. And I want other people to love them like me.

uploads_2013-05-09_4_2973_e-1iMQSOPjIcVaO_JVFrxhpEa9o_s3ul194_ghost-writerBut I’m such a bad finisher of novels. I sometimes think of how nice it would be to have a ghost writer. I’m not talking about dead writers who haunt the living, putting words in their mouths, although it is something like that. A ghost writer is the person who actually writes the book, but gives the credit to another person. A lot of famous people who “write” books use ghost writers (pretty much every sports celebrity uses them). You can tell because these books are always co-written with the famous person’s name in large letters on the dust jacket with the real writer’s name in a tiny font directly below.

I just don’t know if I could accept a ghost writer. I mean, I really want to read the stories that are rolling around in my head, but I would feel downright lazy if someone else were doing the work of writing them down. That and, if I didn’t actually write the words, is it my book? Sure, they are the characters that I imagined, living in a setting that I created, and dealing with the plot points that I came up with, but if someone else puts the flesh on those bones, whose book is it really?

Also, first time authors, unless they are famous, should not have ghost writers. Perhaps needing a ghost writer as a first time author is a sign that you should not be a writer at all.

And so, I have no choice but to plod on, putting one word in front of another until one of my novels are finished. And then another. And then another. But that also means that I have to stop myself from starting new novels and new projects.

And I love starting new things.

Maybe I’ll get myself a co-writer. That’s different from a ghost writer, right?

8 thoughts on “The Allure of the Ghost Writer

    • I agree with Susie. You have it within you to finish a novel.

      (Except for that one. You know the one. The one I want to plagiarize because it’s awesome. You should give that to me.)

      Oh, and I have no idea who Snookie is.

      • I think I might respect you more, Andrew, simply for the fact that you don’t know who Snookie is.

        (She was on ‘The Jersey Shore’…an MTV reality show that got really out of hand and annoying. People who became famous for doing stupid things, basically.)

  1. haha Susie. Snookie. Oh dear (palm to forehead). Josh my good friend one day we’ll take a four day weekend to get some head way on these. That will probably happen 36ish years from now when our kids are grown. That should give all of your stories enough time to percolate so you can chose the best one to work on. I can’t wait.

  2. Pingback: The Allure of the Ghost Writer (A Response) | Tell Better Stories

  3. Have you given any thought to installing & using dragon software. Then you could tell your stories. No ghosts just a lot faster once it adapts to you & you add your story special words to dictionary.

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