How to Become a Ghostwriter: A 5-Step Guide

guide to becoming a ghostwriter

What is a ghostwriter and how can you become one?

In this guide, you’ll discover how to become a successful ghostwriter in this day and age. We’ll also discuss:

  • What skills you need as a ghostwriter
  • How to find ghostwriting clients
  • How much you can make ghostwriting

So whether you are just starting out, or you are looking to take your business to the next level, this guide has everything you need to know!

What Is a Ghostwriter?

A ghostwriter is a person who writes books, articles, stories, or other texts that are officially credited to another person. In other words, a ghostwriter writes for someone else.

[bctt tweet=”Ghostwriters are often used by celebrities, politicians, and business leaders who want to share their stories but don’t have the time or ability to write the book themselves.” username=”freelancewj”]

Ghostwriters are often used by celebrities, politicians, and business leaders who want to share their stories but don’t have the time or ability to write the book themselves. A ghostwriter will interview the client, do research, and then write the book or article in the client’s voice.

Online ghostwriting, or freelance ghostwriting, is a way of producing writings to be used on the internet under someone else’s name. It could be a blog post, guide, or e-book, among other things.

Why Become a Ghostwriter?

There are many reasons why you might want to become a ghostwriter. Perhaps you love writing and want to make a career out of it. Or maybe you’re looking for a way to make some extra money from home. Either way, ghostwriting can be a great option.

Here are just a few of the many benefits of becoming a ghostwriter:

  • Make good money: Ghostwriters can earn $500 to $5,000 per project or more, depending on the length and complexity of the work. Your expertise matters here too.
  • Work from home: Ghostwriting is a great option if you want to work from home and set your own hours.
  • Choose your projects: As a ghostwriter, you get to choose which projects you want to work on. This means you can write about topics that interest you and that you are passionate about.
  • Help others share their stories: One of the best things about ghostwriting is that you get to help others share their stories with the world.
  • Build your writing portfolio: Ghostwriting is a great way to build your writing portfolio and showcase your skills to potential clients.

What Are the Requirements to Become a Ghostwriter?

Now that you know what a ghostwriter is and the benefits of becoming one, you might be wondering what you need to be a successful ghostwriter. Here are just a few of the skills you’ll need as a ghostwriter:

  • Excellent writing skills: This is probably the most important skill you’ll need as a ghostwriter. You’ll need to be able to write clearly, concisely, and persuasively.
  • Research skills: As a ghostwriter, you’ll need to be able to do extensive research on a variety of topics.
  • Interviewing skills: You’ll need to be able to interview your clients to gather information for the project.
  • Time management skills: As a ghostwriter, you’ll need to be able to manage your time well to meet deadlines.
  • Organization skills: You’ll need to be able to organize your thoughts and ideas to produce a well-written piece.

When it comes to the tools and equipment, you’ll need is your computer and an internet connection at the very least. You can make your work easier using a set of writing tools, too. These include grammar checkers, plagiarism detectors, and even AI writing assistants for writing drafts faster. Numerous writing tools come as an all-in-one package with various features.

Grammarly Writing Support

5 Steps to Follow to Become a Ghostwriter

If you’re interested in becoming a ghostwriter, there are a few steps you’ll need to take.

Here are the steps you’ll need to take to become a successful ghostwriter:

Step 1: Choose Your Niche

The first step to becoming a ghostwriter is to choose your niche. What type of writing do you want to do? Do you want to write books, articles, or blog posts?

You can also choose the type of topics you’ll be focusing on as a ghostwriter. Maybe it’s health, parenting, finances, or something else.

While some fields perform better than others, any area of writing can be profitable and work for you if you can write high-quality pieces. Once you’ve decided on your niche, you’ll be able to focus your efforts and market yourself to potential clients.

Step 2: Build Your Writing Portfolio

The next step is to build your writing portfolio. This is where you’ll showcase your skills and demonstrate to potential clients that you’re the right person for the job.

Start by writing some sample pieces and then post them on your website or blog. You can also submit them to online directories or publish them on guest blogging sites.

Social media is a great place to establish yourself and build authority too. You can either publish some useful texts there or share the ones you’ve already written on other platforms.

It would help to focus on one or a few social media networks and get an audience there. Some of the best ones for professional connections are Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.

Step 3: Find Your First Client

Once you’ve built up your writing portfolio, it’s time to find your first client. There are a few ways to do this. Below are some ideas to find ghostwriting clients:

  • Attend industry events or conferences
  • Get involved with online communities related to your niche
  • Connect with other professionals on social media
  • Use freelancing platforms like Upwork or Fiverr
  • Visit a job board like Freelance Writing Gigs

Step 4: Sign a Contract

Many freelancers online take on jobs without any written agreements. This casual approach helps remove a lot of formalities between you and clients. However, it’s not always the best idea.

Before you start working on a project, it would help to sign a contract. This is a legally binding document that will outline the scope of work, pay, and deadlines. Be sure to read over the contract carefully before you sign it.

Signing a contract is a great way to protect yourself as a ghostwriter or writer in general. Ghostwriting can involve writing lengthy documents and so you want to make sure you get paid for all the effort you’ve put in. Should anything happen, the written agreement will help you in court.

Step 5: Get to Work!

Now it’s time to start writing! Be sure to stay in communication with your client.

A decent client will make sure they give all the details you need to begin your writing. But if something isn’t clear, inquire for more information.

Pay attention to all deadlines. Working online may mean that you deal with clients in different parts of the world, hence different time zones. So, keep that in mind when deciding the time to start or finish a particular project. The best approach is always to do the work as soon as you can and not wait for last-minute rushes.

Once the project is complete, you’ll simply submit it to your client. If they like it, they can give you positive reviews online, more jobs, or recommendations. Don’t be afraid to ask for any of these too as they’re essential for taking your career to the next level.

Writers Work - Get Paid to Write

Types of Ghostwriting Jobs

Ghostwriting comes in several flavors. You’re free to ghostwrite anything you want at any time. But focusing on one or two types of ghostwriting jobs can help you become an authority faster and get well-paying clients.

1. Online Content

Online content is one of the most popular types of ghostwriting. It’s how many freelance ghostwriters make their money. The content includes website content, social media posts, articles, and even email newsletters.

2. Business Writing

Another common type is business writing. This can include things like creating marketing materials, white papers, annual reports, and more.

You simply help a business produce content that will help them market its products and services better.

3. Books

And then there’s ghostwriting books which is a process where you help authors write their books. This can be anything from fiction to non-fiction, biographies, how-tos, and more.

This type of ghostwriting requires the experience that most authors have. So you might need to write a book or two yourself to showcase your skills in book writing.

4. E-books

Unlike books, e-books are written materials that get published in digital formats. They tend to be shorter in most cases, especially if it’s a guide or something related. So, you’ll spend less time ghostwriting e-books online than you would in writing an entire book.

5. Movie Scripts

You can also get paid to write movie scripts. This is a more complicated type of ghostwriting as you have to come up with an entire story, not just individual scenes or pieces. But if you have experience writing stories, this could be a great opportunity for you.

6. Songs

Believe it or not, you can get paid to write songs and even entire albums for other people. This is a pretty lucrative opportunity if you have the talent for it. But as with anything else, it takes practice to perfect your craft in songwriting.


How Much Do Ghostwriters Make?

This is a difficult question to answer as it depends on many factors such as experience, skills, the type of project, and more. You can get paid per hour, words, or the entire project.

Most ghostwriters make between $20 to $100 per hour. This can come to a few hundreds or thousands of dollars for each completed project.

How Do I Get Started as a Ghostwriter?

The best way to get started is by writing samples and then pitching them to potential clients. You can also look for ghostwriting jobs on freelancing platforms or job boards.

Who Hires Ghostwriters?

People from various professions can hire ghostwriters. It can be an online business owner like a blogger, or a celebrity like a politician, leader, or artist, among others.

Basically, anyone wants something written for them but doesn’t have the skills or time to do it. So, there are endless opportunities for ghostwriters.

What Are the Qualifications Needed to Be a Ghostwriter?

There are no formal qualifications needed to be a ghostwriter. However, you should have excellent writing skills, be able to meet deadlines, and be able to communicate well with clients.

How Do I Find Ghostwriting Jobs?

There are many ways to find ghostwriting clients. You can start by pitching your services to businesses or individuals. You can also look for ghostwriting jobs on freelancing platforms or job boards.

Start Ghostwriting Today

Now that you know how to become a ghostwriter, it’s time to start your career. Use the tips and information in this guide to help you get started.

Always remember to keep improving your skills. It’s a perfect strategy to land better-paying clients and get more freedom in work.

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About the author

Mike Stuzzi is an Internet entrepreneur and blogger at The Money Galileo. He loves writing about money and wealth. During his free time, you’ll find him watching business shows or caring for his pets.



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3 responses
  1. Kashif Masood Avatar
    Kashif Masood

    Many thanks and appreciated the way you elaborate things. You mention the real content for a ghost writer although a new or a professional writer. Thanks and Hope Alive..

  2. Razia Avatar

    Hi Mike.
    I am Razia and am interested in writing. However, I am not able to find a suitable project. I am a new freelancer and since I do not have any reviews, ratings, or projects to my credit I am not landing myself in any sort of work. I am also interested in data entry and editing content. I would be glad if you can help.

    Thank you!

    Instagram page: d_scribblers_page
    Blog: these_broken_strings

  3. Koders Hive Avatar

    Becoming a ghostwriter can be an incredibly rewarding and fulfilling career choice for those who have a passion for writing and storytelling. Here’s a concise five-step guide to help you embark on this exciting journey:

    Step 1: Hone Your Writing Skills
    First and foremost, dedicate time to sharpening your writing skills. Ghostwriting requires not only proficiency in grammar and syntax but also the ability to adapt your writing style to match the voice and tone of your clients. Read widely, practice writing in different genres, and continuously seek feedback to improve your craft.

    Step 2: Define Your Niche
    Identify the specific genres or topics you excel at or have a deep interest in. Specializing in a niche can help you stand out and attract clients looking for expertise in those areas. Whether it’s fiction, non-fiction, business, self-help, or any other genre, focusing on your strengths will set you on the path to success.

    Step 3: Build a Portfolio
    Establishing a strong portfolio is crucial to showcase your writing abilities to potential clients. Start by creating writing samples that highlight your versatility and skill in various genres. You can create original pieces or even offer to ghostwrite articles or short stories for friends or acquaintances to gain experience and develop a portfolio that reflects your capabilities.

    Step 4: Network and Collaborate
    Networking plays a vital role in any freelance career, including ghostwriting. Connect with authors, editors, literary agents, and professionals in the publishing industry. Attend writing conferences, join online writing communities, and actively engage with others in your field. Collaborations with established writers or editors can help you gain exposure and build your reputation as a ghostwriter.

    Step 5: Market Yourself and Seek Opportunities
    Promote your services as a ghostwriter through various channels. Create a professional website or blog where you can showcase your portfolio, provide information about your services, and share client testimonials. Utilize social media platforms to establish an online presence and engage with potential clients. Additionally, explore freelance marketplaces, literary agencies, and publishing houses that connect ghostwriters with authors seeking their services.

    Remember, becoming a successful ghostwriter takes time, persistence, and a commitment to continuous improvement. Adaptability, confidentiality, and the ability to understand and capture the unique voice of your clients are also key attributes. With dedication and a genuine passion for storytelling, you can embark on a fulfilling career as a ghostwriter, breathing life into the words and stories of others.

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