Compost: Networks

networkingAnother tip on how to succeed as a ghostwriter: Network, network, network. Build a list of book professionals who know your work – writing coaches, publishing coaches, literary agents, book marketing folks, book designers, indexers, copyeditors, Author assistants, proofreaders, publicists, book reviewers, etc etc. Network with these people online and at in-person book events. You can strut your stuff, but don’t be obnoxious about it. It’s more important to let them strut theirs. Because you cannot succeed without a cheering section, and you must be part of their cheering section too.

And when you have succeeded, develop your Referral List for other ghostwriters (yes, your competitors) – so you can refer your “overflow” to them. (Overflow is a beautiful word, by the way.) Developing a Ghostwriter Referral list is challenging, because you shouldn’t refer other writers whose work you don’t know, admire, and trust. And ghostwriting excellence takes more and different skills than being a good writer. This is why I created my online program “Learn to Ghost”– people who complete this program satisfactorily go right on my Ghostwriter Referral list.

Haiku Friday: Whine

zen gardenHere’s my haiku for today, on the topic of Whine:

the way to stay bored:

sing a song of loom and doom

in an off-key whine

It’s Haiku Friday again.  For the past twenty years or so, it has been my practice to write one haiku every day. Every Friday I share a haiku here, about whatever topic I happen to choose.  I invite you to write a haiku on this topic too, and share it with me and the readers of this blog.  Just write it in the Comments below. The only rules are: 1) your haiku must be about the named topic; 2) you must follow the 5-7-5 syllable format; 3) no obscenities or hate (I will delete those).  That’s it.

M for Moose

M MooseSee my April 2nd post in the “Serial Fiction” tab above for the story of my children’s ABC book, X is a Fox Walking Backward. Every Wednesday I am sharing one page of this book. Here is page 13 (previous pages also can be found on the Serial Fiction tab):

 

 

M

Moose

A moose has big flat antlers

which he is proud of.

When he wants to fight,

he pokes his antlers into another moose.

Ghostwriting for a Dog: Ghosting for the Ghost

Back CameraGoody Beagle here. Yes, I am dead. I died about a year ago and my ashes are buried in an apple orchard. But due to the mysterious nature of the universe, I am still here in some strange form. Don’t ask me to explain further, because I can’t. And even if I could, you couldn’t understand it.

When I left the live realm, I bequeathed my job of handling our human to Alex Terrgi. I am happy to report that he is doing a good job. Our human still misses me, but Alex gives her lots of love, and he does just the right amount of funny stuff so she laughs enough.

Of course, he’s not quite as good as I was at writing blog post stories, but he’s getting better. Maybe someday he will be almost as good as I was.

Almost.

Haiku Friday: Paradigm

haiku pic 2Here’s my haiku for today, on the topic of Paradigm:

what if “man” meant an

abbreviated woman …

let’s change paradigms

It’s Haiku Friday again.  For the past twenty years or so, it has been my practice to write one haiku every day. Every Friday I share a haiku here, about whatever topic I happen to choose.  I invite you to write a haiku on this topic too, and share it with me and the readers of this blog.  Just write it in the Comments below. The only rules are: 1) your haiku must be about the named topic; 2) you must follow the 5-7-5 syllable format; 3) no obscenities or hate (I will delete those).  That’s it.

L for Lion

L LionSee my April 2nd post in the “Serial Fiction” tab above for the story of my children’s ABC book, X is a Fox Walking Backward. Every Wednesday I am sharing one page of this book. Here is page 12 (previous pages also can be found on the Serial Fiction tab):

 

L

Lion

A lion is called the “King of the jungle”

because he roars very loudly and scares the other animals.

But really he sleeps most of the time.

Compost: Nosiness

NoseHere’s a short tip for those writers out there who thing they might like being a ghostwriter:

Be Nosy. Good ghostwriters should suffer from insatiable curiosity. A ghostwriter is like a bartender or a therapist. You want to know everything about everybody – and the deeper into their soul the better.

Begin each ghostwriting job by asking as many questions as you can think up. Start with the general, but don’t stop there. Ask for details. Detailed questions elicit detailed answers, and stories come alive with details.

Don’t stick to an interview script; ask questions about their answers to your questions. As for clarification, ask for emotional responses, ask for sensory details such as colors, smells, sounds, and tactile impressions.

Some of your questions will work better than others. Some people respond better to cues about how things looked visually, others will get jazzed if you ask them to explain how things work. You will learn about your client and what makes them “sing” as you go along.

If you are interested in learning more about the ins and outs of ghostwriting, check out my online program “Living as a Ghost.” It covers virtually everything I’ve learned in the fifteen years I’ve been a happy and prosperous ghost.

Haiku Friday: Lust

haiku pic 3Here’s my haiku for today, on the topic of Lust:

heads back, open beaks

lust-filled longings spill from throats

feathers vibrating

It’s Haiku Friday again.  For the past twenty years or so, it has been my practice to write one haiku every day. Every Friday I share a haiku here, about whatever topic I happen to choose.  I invite you to write a haiku on this topic too, and share it with me and the readers of this blog.  Just write it in the Comments below. The only rules are: 1) your haiku must be about the named topic; 2) you must follow the 5-7-5 syllable format; 3) no obscenities or hate (I will delete those).  That’s it.

 

K for kangaroo

K KangarooSee my April 2nd post in the “Serial Fiction” tab above for the story of my children’s ABC book, X is a Fox Walking Backward. Every Wednesday I am sharing one page of this book. Here is page 11 (previous pages also can be found on the Serial Fiction tab):

 

 

K

Kangaroo

A kangaroo lives in Australia.

She carries her babies in a pouch in her front.

She is a champion jumper and kicker,

much better than you.

Ghostwriting for a Dog: Fish Sticks

fish stickAlex Terrgi here. I like treats – what dog doesn’t? But I don’t like make-believe treats – you know, the kind that are made of things that were never alive. These treats might have names like “bacon flavor” or “liver flavor” – but the humans who named them are either lying or their inferior human noses cannot tell the difference between real bacon and fake.

Usually humans save these make-believe treats for dogs and do not eat them themselves. But sometimes they slip up and eat make-believe food themselves. Probably because their tongues aren’t much better than their noses. One of these foods they claim is good to eat is an abomination they call “fish sticks.”

The word “fish” in “fish sticks” is a lie. A big, fat, ugly lie. Trust me on this, I know what I’m talking about. Once my human’s two-year-old granddaughter was given fish sticks for lunch when we were visiting her. Because two-year-olds are generous with their food, especially to us dogs, I was sitting close beside her as she ate. She took a fish stick out of her mouth and handed it to me. I politely took it in my mouth.

OMG. I was just about to spit the “fish” stick out but then I thought, “what if she takes it back and puts it in her mouth again? This fish-shit could kill her!”

So I heroically carried it (in my mouth!) to the garden and dug a hole and buried it. I hope the fish stick doesn’t poison the dirt.