The process of hiring a writing collaborator (ghostwriter) can be daunting—especially for first-time authors or those unwilling to impart personal or delicate subject matter or express controversial viewpoints. 

Self-expression is intrinsic to the human fabric. As long as your message is significant to you and your target audience and easily understandable, you will be on your way to becoming an author. 

Ghosts are very forthcoming in demystifying the process from the outset. The client and writer engage in a dialogue that involves open communication and conceptualization (either via email, phone interviews, or audio recordings). Some ghostwriters meet with their clients, but doing so is neither required nor always possible, owing to time, geographic constraints, and other commitments. And in today’s world, technology often renders in-person communications superfluous. 

There are fundamental elements to hiring a ghostwriter. Those presented here, though not exhaustive, will hopefully serve as launching points.

(1) Trust—As in any relationship, trust is an essential ingredient. Entrusting the details of your story (e.g., a memoir or an autobiography) to a stranger may seem intimidating, but professional ghostwriters understand and empathize with their clients. No one is immune to life’s fluctuations, and as conduits of ideas and innovations, ghostwriters free their clients from the shackles of inhibition, uncertainty, and even pain. As such, the collaborative process is often cathartic for the client. Compassion and professionalism are not mutually exclusive, and at the core of the collaborative process is the human experience. 

Frequently, ghostwriters comport themselves like psychologists who listen to, advise, and counsel their clients. Hand-holding is sometimes of the essence—a natural consequence of your creative collaboration. No matter what you want to discuss, know that the end product will reflect your voice, message, and mission.

Some ghostwriters may decline your request due to the subject matter. Do not be discouraged. This candid admission enables you to move forward and find the perfect ‘fit’ that will result in a successful collaboration. Once you connect with a ghostwriter, the magic begins.

(2) Preparedness—Although pre-prepared drafts and notes are not necessary, they can be helpful. Professional ghostwriters are highly skilled in composing texts from scratch, so you don’t have to struggle with the written word at all. 

However, it is essential to approach your ghostwriter with an idea. By no means must the concept be fully developed, but it should at least be generalized and susceptible to elaboration over time. Typically, your ghostwriter will assist in crafting an outline—your focal point of organization and inspiration.

Envision your target audience—those individuals who would most benefit from, enjoy, and relate to your message. Keep them in mind throughout the process and allow your expressions to flow. When you write about what you know, your work develops and becomes more relatable.

When dialoguing with your ghostwriter, avoid the dreaded monosyllable. ‘Yes’ and ‘no’ answers may sometimes be appropriate, but excessively cursory responses are static and only go so far in the creative process. A book produced from finite phrases or thoughts does not entirely reflect your purpose and wastes time as your ghostwriter embarks on a fishing expedition.

(3) Subject-matter Expertise— Select a ghostwriter with a proven history in the genre of your choice. For example, if you want to write a sci-fi novel, your choice of a memoirist might not be apt. But most ghostwriters have aptitudes across a wide range of subjects. Your comfort level and the ghostwriter’s ability to conform to your chosen style are paramount, as is your willingness to impart your desired message.

(4) Consistency of Communication—Once you decide to sign on with a ghostwriter, you make a steadfast commitment—throughout the process to completion. Ghostwriters don’t appear and disappear on a whim, and neither should the client. Doing so halts the project’s momentum, generates confusion and wastes the ghostwriter’s time and resources. Diligence and tenacity are of the essence for all involved.

(5) Timely payments—Ghostwriting fees vary and depend on the writing collaborator’s experience level. The magnitude and complexity of the work also determine rates.  

The client must be ready, willing, and able to remit timely payments and adhere to the guidelines set forth in the ghostwriter’s contract. Failure to comply results in a material breach and termination of the agreement, with additional terms and penalties imposed in some instances. Therefore, before commencing a project, follow protocol meticulously and be sure that you are prepared to proceed in all respects. 

Most of all, enjoy the journey and unleash the truth of who you are. Become a change agent, be aspirational, make a difference!

Copyright © Gabriella Gafni, 2021. All rights reserved.

GMG Ghostwriting Services

The Building Blocks of Entrepreneurial Success

Entrepreneurship is as much a matter of self-actualization as it is a business venture. It involves understanding what you want out of your business—not only for the sake of financial gain—but also the development of the required skill set, the extent to which you can produce and how quickly, and your willingness to learn more about your industry. The more you know, and the more advanced your knowledge becomes, the more you can educate and inspire your clients. 

The following are the building blocks of entrepreneurial success:

(1) Interpersonal Communication Skills

Starting a business is far more than compiling and organizing spreadsheets. It’s interpersonal communication, understanding your clients’ expectations, and rising to the challenge—with a willingness to adapt to unexpected situations and questions, as well as the ability to conquer pitfalls (e.g., recalcitrant clients, unforeseen deadlines, and other unpredictable obstacles along the way).

Open dialogue is a vital component of being an entrepreneur. Effective communication bridges gaps in understanding. Also, a meaningful dialogue obliterates uncertainty and brings people together—even across seemingly insurmountable divides. Further, open communication fosters a sense of trust and the promise of a long-term relationship.

(2)  The Ability to Compromise and Take Risks

The ability to compromise is the essence of the entrepreneurial spirit. You and your client can agree to disagree amicably and arrive at a reasonable, mutually beneficial outcome. Resistance, on the other hand, is the antithesis of a fruitful collaboration. Forget Newton’s third law of physics: “For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.” Your reaction to any given circumstance need not be forced or compelled but suggested, with a feeling of mutual respect, authenticity, and eagerness to welcome diverse opinions. 

In the process, you will confront challenges and have to take risks. But if you believe in yourself and your expertise, those challenges become steppingstones to the goal of raising the bar for yourself and your clients.

(3) Listening and Accepting Criticism

A corollary to comprise is the ability to listen, conceptualize, and lightheartedly receive criticism. A bruised ego immediately heals for an individual with heightened self-awareness and confidence in their discipline. 

(4) Loving Your Work

When you love your work and embrace the process, you are not working at all. You are living your best life, edifying yourself, your clients, and those you love. “The grind” of a daily routine doesn’t exist. Every day offers an exciting chance to adapt, grow, and learn more than you ever dreamed possible. You also give in unimaginable ways, reaching out to people you may never have known had you not awakened to your chosen skill set and all the possibilities it affords you.

(5) Self-care and Laughter

The successful entrepreneur takes time to enjoy, savor, and laugh with loved ones and life itself. Sometimes, days can seem like a rollercoaster. But when you embrace the experience —and even laugh at the stumbles—taking time to engage in self-care, pausing to acknowledge what is most significant in your life—you never lose sight of the gifts that life bestows every day. That’s why it’s called “the present.”

© Gabriella Gafni, 2021 All Rights Reserved.

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The Kindness Project

Photography by Sheila Butler

Envision a world in which everyone was kind and followed the rules. Would we live in Utopia? Because we are ‘of the Earth’ and given to human foibles (arguably the most prominent of which is ego), it is unlikely that we can create a perfect macrocosm where everyone accepts one another unconditionally—but we would come close.

We can strive to become microcosms unto ourselves where we give and receive while being mindful of the importance of diverse opinions and perspectives that make the world a more loving collective.  

We filter the world through our five senses. But beneath the surface, outside the realm of our known universe, there are other ways to apprehend our environment that conduce to a more rational, livable society. One such ‘sense’ is a sense impression, which we receive and transmit almost instantaneously. In everyday interactions, each of us gets overt and subtle indications and signals of others by making and perceiving a unique imprint through words, actions, or other representations. The exchange of impressions often causes immediate reactions, some positive, some negative.

Problems arise when divergent ideologies clash, and in the worst-case scenarios, social and ideological strife surge over so-called ‘differences’ that threaten the stability of individuals and nations. Such spontaneous implosion from within our human family is unnecessary, dangerous, and destructive.

When we attempt a resolution through less-than-amicable means, we invariably experience an infinite regress of ideological entanglement in which we forever strive to be ‘right.’

There needs to be a paradigm shift in which being ‘right’ morphs into being kind. Seeking to ‘win’ points is not a catalyst for everyone’s peace in civilized societies. Instead, striving to be fair, understanding, and embracing of others, irrespective of contrasting—and often delicate—viewpoints, elevates us to the zenith of our humanity where contentiousness has no place.

Being kind does not mean giving in or giving up. The type of surrender that kindness occasions is not self-defeating but edifying. Such an approach expands our worldview and solidifies the principles that we espouse for ourselves and respect for those who differ. In such a way, everyone maintains equilibrium.  

Furthermore, a conciliatory approach does not negate competition and healthy debate. Rather, self-assured kindness speaks to issues without anger, accords deference to the right of measured, thoughtful expression without taking a megalomaniacal stance. 

 Kindness rejoices in others’ success and is humble in the wake of failure (a stepping stone to personal growth and knowledge).

Kindness is empowerment in a whisper—a modest affirmation of the self and others—not submissiveness.

And kindness in the face of adversity or conflicting opinions does not indicate disingenuousness or duplicity but a willingness to open our arms to other possibilities. Kindness, instead of divisiveness, can be our imprint and can change the world—and ourselves. 

Trees don’t survive storms without bending, and in doing so, their roots immeasurably strengthen. 

© Gabriella Gafni, 2020. All rights reserved.

GMG Ghostwriting Services

The Message of COVID-19: A Call to Our Better Angels

“Work Interrupted” ~ William-Adolphe Bouguereau

At times, it takes a crisis for humanity to recognize the significance of oneness consciousness—the idea of a collective state of being in which all of us become responsible for each other—instead of remaining trapped in our illusory “separateness.” We are all interdependent. When one breathes out, multitudes inhale that same air, with the identical form of respiration.

Humans are inherently social beings. We need one another to exist—to know that we matter to someone or many. Now, as social distancing keeps us physically apart, we are being forced to remind ourselves of how deeply we are connected to each other on the visceral levels of heart and soul. Our understanding of one another deepens as we realize that we are experiencing a global threat— in concert. The virus compels us to acknowledge our commonalities rather than our differences and beckons us to shift from an “I” to a “we” mindset. 

Although the virus keeps us in isolation, we have more time for reflection to look within, instead of without, to aspire to something higher than our mundane preoccupations, to understand the importance of being together or the pain of avoiding contact with those we deeply love for the sake of mutual health and safety.

Avaricious consumerism must shift from how much we have or wish to acquire to obtain life’s bare necessities and a corresponding awareness that it is not all for me, but for us. Inclusion is the order of the day

Oddly, the pathogen lives well on currency (There is something more formidable than money!)

Interruptions in life’s daily concourse signal an opportunity to heed our inner whisperings—the angels that alight on our shoulders, telling us who we truly are— each other.

The virus does not discriminate based on race, religion, culture, or national origin. It strikes the human family regardless of perspective or political affiliation. It is not on the ballot and cares nothing for strident debate.  

Ego is on hiatus.

 The luxury of dining in the balmy (pre)spring air, the joy of being with friends or loved ones, or shaking the hands of strangers (friends that we newly meet) must be deferred for a brighter tomorrow.

Now, we must affirm the most cherished gift of all: the breath of life that we share as a human family.

 When the day finally comes when we can freely reach out and share a hug, a meal, a glass of wine (or sparkling water), or an affectionate glance, that microcosmic event will be more precious than ever.

Loving, positive emanations flow to everyone! 

Copyright © Gabriella Gafni, 2020

Write a Book!

The World Is Yours To Shape ...

Writing a book gives you license to express your ideas and feelings about any number and kind of subjects. Every expression of sentiment and each ideological precept are as valuable as a drop in the ocean. Without that seemingly minute addition to the vast life-giving body of water, the entirety would not exist. 

Dare to create and find the magic,  power, and far-reaching impact of words. Giving life to a thought in the written word is, in essence, your unique imprint on life’s canvas. Don’t be afraid of where the idea can take you, for you will never know just how much you can change the world — and maybe even yourself — unless you try!

Write A Book, and Watch
Your World Bloom, Like The Flowers Below ...

The process of hiring a writing collaborator (ghostwriter) can be daunting—especially for first-time authors or those unwilling to impart personal or delicate subject matter or

Read More »

The Building Blocks of Entrepreneurial Success Entrepreneurship is as much a matter of self-actualization as it is a business venture. It involves understanding what you

Read More »

The Kindness Project

Envision a world in which everyone was kind and followed the rules. Would we live in Utopia? Because we are ‘of the Earth’ and given

Read More »

Write a Book!

The World Is Yours To Shape … Writing a book gives you license to express your ideas and feelings about any number and kind of

Read More »