How Does the Relationship Between Ghostwriter and Author Change?

At first meeting, you are equals. The client has the voice, but needs words. You can capture the words, but need the voice.

During interviews, the author shares expertise and personal anecdotes. You listen and guide questions. Author gives. You receive. Symbiotic.

First draft chapters roll out. The author hopes & judges. You hope for favor and kind correction. Voiced words are the author’s. Written copyright is yours.

Second draft manuscript is underway. The author reads while following your expert lead. You’re in the heart of your element, confident and certain. Problems arise. You solve them together. The author nods to your experience. You feel great. It feels like your book.

Final draft underway. A myriad of tentacles, you hone and trim. Rough edges, smoothed. The author eyes delivery and birth of the next beginning: agent or publication. Unspoken sadness seeps in as you pass into proofreading.

The end dance has begun. The letting go. You weigh, approve, reject your proofreader's suggestions. The author waits, anticipates.

On delivery day, the proud author parent grins. It’s a win-win. Copyright ownership is now the author’s.

Realization sets in.

You’ve been an excellent midwife.

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