Saddle Up Your Story

I’ll be honest, the busier I get with my own projects, the less time I have for ghostwriting. Still, being able to help other people tell their stories is important to me, so I make time when I can. Let me be clear, NOT everyone has a book in them…and even if they do, many should stay there…inside them! However, everyone does have a story to tell and often a lesson to teach. I am honored to be a part of that process for others and do that in a few different ways.

  • Ghostwriting
    When I sign on to be someone’s ghostwriter it’s all inclusive. I help develop and flesh out the outline of the book. I create a strong theme or hook to support the book (and ideally entice readers). One way I ensure I’m writing in my client’s voice is by recording a series of interviews, so I hear what they say and how they say it. I then base the book copy on that, supported by the outline, theme and hook. Of course, my work also includes editing, usually about three drafts: the initial pass, the detailed edit, and the finishing touches. How long it takes depends on amount of research I do, the availability of the client and, of course, my own schedule at the time.
  • Complete Coaching
    This is a great option for people who actually do have some good writing chops, they just need some help getting from point A to point Z. I support and coach my clients from the initial brainstorming session to final editing. I provide ongoing coaching calls, email follow up with tips and reminders, and help them track milestones. This approach is customized to the needs of the client – whatever it takes to get them motivated, keep them on track and ensure the book gets completed!
  • Structure Support
    Sometimes there are people who don’t need a lot of hand holding, they just need some accountability. That’s when my Structured Support is an ideal fit. I start with an initial brainstorming session to help create an outline and hook for the book. Then, I schedule a series of follow up emails to help create a writing schedule they can stick to, hold them accountable for various milestones and connect them with the resources they need to finish up the project and have a book ready to go.

How I Learned to Be a Better Writer

Secrets I Learned from King, Faulkner and Twain

Read A Lot

One of the best books on writing is Stephen King’s “On Writing – A Memoir of the Craft”. Even if you’re not a fan of horror and haven’t ready any of his fiction…READ THIS!! It not only helps you become a better writer, it makes you a better reader! And, I say better because no one can promise you’ll become a great writer, but you can always become better! Don’t let people judge you on what you read, just grab a book and start reading.

Write A Lot

King has a lot to say about writing as well but getting started can be the hardest thing. There’s little else as terrifying as a blank computer screen waiting for your first words. To that point, William Faulkner said, “Get it down. Take chances. It may be bad, but it’s the only way you can do anything really good.” Personally, I came up with the concept of a Draft Zero. No one ever reads my Draft Zeros so I’m free to write bad as long as I’m writing. Several early versions of my work have notes in parentheses that say things like (this is horrible), (find a different word), (fix this) … you get the idea.

Make Believe A Lot

Remember playing as a child when the best games and fun times were when we played make believe? When we let our imagination go, we can be our most creative – and that’s good for writers and non-writers. I think that’s why I love Mark Twain’s quote so much, “Most writers regard the truth as their most valuable possession, and therefore are most economical in its use.” You see, a great story doesn’t usually get bogged down with facts and reality. I should note that I’m referring to fiction here, but there are certainly cases where non-fiction writers seem to set facts aside. I’m not advocating for that, and my love of make believe is clearly why I prefer fiction!