Ghostwriting for Bestselling Author for peanuts? UPDATE

36 replies


Update in post #38:

http://www.warriorforum.com/main-int...tml#post307571





OK- life is interesting!

i was just approached about writing a 200 page ebook on a topic i know a lot about. i am allowed to use PLR in the book.

they want a price.

My problem- i have no clue what to charge.

Its for a book that would sell a lot of copies and become very popular due to the person listed as "author". (not me!)

so- how much to charge? where do i go from here?

Thanks for all input! They want an answer tonight!!!
#200 #book #charge #ghostwritten #page #urgent
  • Profile picture of the author Mark Brock
    What sort of prices have you been charging for this service before?

    If you are an expert in the field I'd definately suggest an amount nearer to $10-$15 per page ($2,000-$3,000 for the book).

    Mark
    Signature

    AWOL

    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[296086].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Warrior Simon
    I think it depends on how much research/time you have to do/spend.
    For rewrites of PLR I would say prices of $0.007 to $0.008 per word are normal.
    For writing with research maybe $0.03-$0.04 per word.
    Depending on the niche/topic I would then add an 'authority'-bonus of 10-20%.

    :-)
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[296099].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Lance K
    Have you agreed upon what constitutes a "page"?
    • # of words
    • Spacing
    • Margins
    • etc.
    Originally Posted by BizBooks View Post

    OK- life is interesting!

    i was just approached about writing a 200 page ebook on a topic i know a lot about. i am allowed to use PLR in the book.

    they want a price.

    My problem- i have no clue what to charge.

    Its for a book that would sell a lot of copies and become very popular due to the perosn listed as "author". (not me!)

    so- how much to charge? where do i go from here?

    Thanks for all input! They want an answer tonight!!!
    Signature
    "You can have everything in life you want if you will just help enough other people get what they want."
    ~ Zig Ziglar
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[296103].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author Loren Woirhaye
      Page definitions vary. I think 250 words per page
      is a pretty good average for a real content product.

      That means about 50,000 words. That's a lot of writing.
      Also - how terse and powerful does the writing need to
      be? A lot of ebooks are bloated with extra words. If
      you can write and edit for engaging, concise prose
      you should be paid MORE not less.

      I wouldn't quote anything under $3000. Don't anybody react
      like that's crazy low. I doubt I would do it for less than
      twice that but it depends on research and personal
      interest.

      Don't kiss butt to get the work. If you do it too cheap your
      client will always treat you like a cheap writer.

      With the time you spend writing this ghost-book you could
      bang out 5 - 10,000 word reports (which is long) and
      sell them under your own name or give them away to
      get leads - sell PLR rights, etc...
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[296118].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author gotlinks
    Depends how good of a writer you are but somewhere between 2-5k id say...
    Signature
    Learn the secrets to growing your Youtube Channel!

    - Feel free to private message me about anything. I love to help people and you are definitely no exception!
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[296122].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Bev Clement
    Interesting, we covered this today on my writers' course.

    Not only will you need to know how much to charge but also how long it will take you to write.

    You are the only person who can price this, because you will get a different price from everybody.

    The standard is 250 words per page, and I charge $32 per page. But, you should be looking at how many words they want in the total book, and work on the word price. Mine is $0.12 (increase coming very soon) and then charge them from there.

    You need to decide what your hourly rate is for writing and then work out how many words per hour you can write. This is the only way you are going to get a figure that you are happy with.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[296150].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Ivancho
    well my writer usually charge for a such of job around $25 per page. From here you can see what u can charge for your proucct
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[296162].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Steve Faber
    Is this for print or electronic format? I've been paid $1,500 for a 4,000 word articles for major publications, and $1,000 for 1,500 word articles (on multiple occasions). I would say that if the book is for print and is requiring a substantial rewrite of PLR, at least $3,000, but probably closer to $5,000. 200 full sized pages, single spaced, is a lot of writing. It would also depend on how much research you have to do and a few other ancillaries.

    Just my .02c,

    Steve
    Signature
    For Killer Marketing Tips that Will Grow Your Business Follow Me on Twitter Now
    After all, you're probably following a few hundred people already that aren't doing squat for you.....
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[296173].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author BizBooks
    Recieved via PM:

    Originally Posted by Anonymous

    Good morning!

    I am sending a PM because my post would not be a popular one.

    Do NOT sell yourself short. You could easily charge $20 - $25 for each 250 words. Maybe more.

    Charge what you think it is worth.

    Good luck!
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[296212].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author MaskedMarketer
      If you're really an expert, I wouldn't even consider it unless I got royalties.

      ======

      Edit

      unless you really need the cash- but honestly don't sell yourself short!!!!
      Signature

      "One Man's Ceiling is Another Man's Floor
      "


      "I Pay Less Attention to What Men Say. I Just Watch What They Do."
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[296219].message }}
      • Profile picture of the author BizBooks
        I *am* an expert.. but then again, my name won't be on it... so the purpose of being an expert on that topic mainly benefits me (by the fact that I don't have to reasearch the way someone new to the topic would have to.)

        Royalties? do ghostwriters ever get royalties?

        They won't hear of using me My name anywhere in the book. (if they would, i would do it for free- for the publicity that will surround this book).

        plus the fact I can use PLR- makes me think that they want a lowest offer. they have lots of bids BUT not from experts in the subject.
        {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[296231].message }}
        • Profile picture of the author Dave Everett
          Depends to a certain extent on how much you need the work. If you are desperate then your price will be on the lower side of those quoted in this thread. However, if your need is not so great, then it should be on the higher side. Only you can answer that one.
          {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[296287].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Lance K
    Originally Posted by BizBooks View Post

    OK- life is interesting!

    i was just approached about writing a 200 page ebook on a topic i know a lot about. i am allowed to use PLR in the book.

    they want a price.

    My problem- i have no clue what to charge.
    A little off topic, but...

    If you're an expert in the field, why are you going to sell your expertise at a discount? How do I know you're going to sell it at a discount?

    Its for a book that would sell a lot of copies and become very popular due to the perosn listed as "author". (not me!)
    I'd expect that from your average expert. But you're a Warrior and therefore obviously have an interest in marketing. The big money is made by marketing expertise, not by posessing it. And your potential client knows this.

    I'd approach them about being partners on the deal. Make the offer fair and appealing. Realize that their marketing expertise that you get to observe and internalize is worth something.

    If they're not open to that, I'd say start building a list and promoting to the market on your own. Brand yourself as an expert in that field and market that expertise.

    You're treating a potential gold mine as a simple commodity.
    Signature
    "You can have everything in life you want if you will just help enough other people get what they want."
    ~ Zig Ziglar
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[296320].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author ankur sharma
      Hey , i asked the same question . I am also confused about how much should i ask for. Here's teh link. If you guys can answer my specific question , it'll be great.

      http://www.warriorforum.com/main-int...l-content.html

      I guess there is lot of confusion what people should ask for their content. May be putting your work in auction works.

      Peace
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[296378].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author BizBooks
    Based on the research I have done, It looks like the $5,000 range is a fair price for a 200 pager.

    @ 250 words per page...
    200 pages X 250 words = 50,000 words or about $6,000


    does this sound right to you?
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[296521].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Jim Pearson
    The price range of $5,000 to $6,000 is a good starting point for discussion. But before you agree upon price you need to determine the following:

    • Overall time line to finish project
    • How many revisions will be included in the price
    • What is the font, type set etc required for the book
    • Who will be editing the book & what requirements do they have
    • Is there a set time line of # of pages or chapters
    • How is the payment schedule outlined (you should require a minimum of 1/3 up front , then 1/3 a the 50% mark and the remaining 1/3 upon project completion)
    There is a more important point though: What is your purpose for taking this project? (i.e. What do you really want out of this project?)

    Are you only looking to earn the fee...then bid so you can get the project.

    But if you want name recognition, then offer to do the work at a much lower rate for your name being added to the byline as a contributor like:

    XXX Title

    written by:

    Well Known Name XXXXX

    with your name

    You might want to think about two proposals, one for full price as the ghost writer and the other for free or a greatly reduced price with your name on he byline.


    If you are a true expert, then they should agree to some type of name recognition for you whereby it does not diminish the purpose of the book ( to promote the main author)
    Signature
    To Your Success;
    Jim Pearson
    Co-founder of TheAdvisoryGym.com
    Get Your Free Copy of "How To Market Yourself As The Expert You Are."
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[296911].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Andy Fletcher
    If you have this much faith in the product to sell this well I'd be negotiating % rather than $.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[298721].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author Steven Wagenheim
      Okay, here is what that book would cost you if I put it together.

      I usually write about 400 words per page.

      A 200 page book would be 80,000 words.

      My rate is 10 cents per word.

      That comes out to $8,000 for this book.

      And don't even try to whittle me down to one penny less.

      So I think charging $5,000 for your book (assuming 400 words per page) is
      more than fair.
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[298873].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author BizBooks
    Steven:

    I Guess I won't be outsourcing it to you then..

    I let him know i would be willing to work for a reduced rate (less then the $5,000 I quoted) If my name gets on the byline.

    Warriors think from a marketing standpoint !
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[298964].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author Steven Wagenheim
      Originally Posted by BizBooks View Post

      Steven:

      I Guess I won't be outsourcing it to you then..

      I let him know i would be willing to work for a reduced rate (less then the $5,000 I quoted) If my name gets on the byline.

      Warriors think from a marketing standpoint !
      Believe in your product, believe in yourself, charge what you're worth.

      Take it from somebody who had to learn that lesson the hard way.
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[298980].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author BizBooks
    Looks like its down to me and one other person... an out of work writer that's willing to do it for "bupkes" (look that up!) and myself....

    I'm double the price- but I know my stuff...

    I was told if I come even close to matching the other person (say up to $500-1000 more) the job is mine.

    hmm?
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[300699].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author BizBooks
    and a word of advice from someone I know:

    "do it for the education, even for free. do it for the contacts you'll make. Do it so you can say you ghostwrote a bestselling book for a bestselling author, which will help you in the future."

    if you were me, based on the circumstances, would you look at it as tuition and do it, even for free?

    if a "top guru" wanted you to do a project for them for close-to-nothing, but you would get to speak to them daily and meet the players in that field, would you jump at the opportunity...or run the other way?
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[300705].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author Bev Clement
      Originally Posted by BizBooks View Post

      and a word of advice from someone I know:

      "do it for the education, even for free. do it for the contacts you'll make. Do it so you can say you ghostwrote a bestselling book for a bestselling author, which will help you in the future."

      if you were me, based on the circumstances, would you look at it as tuition and do it, even for free?

      if a "top guru" wanted you to do a project for them for close-to-nothing, but you would get to speak to them daily and meet the players in that field, would you jump at the opportunity...or run the other way?
      What field is the person who gave that advice in? Do they ghostwrite themselves? That is one of the worse pieces of advice given.

      Would I reduce my fees to half only if I wanted to work for half the hourly rate I would normally work for.

      If you think this will make you lots of contacts, then you might be mistaken. Who is going to know it was you who wrote it?

      Most top gurus pay top money for their work, and you will find that they don't have time to talk to you daily, to mentor you. This is a business, and they want a writer they can give the brief to, who will work and complete it. They don't want someone who is going to ask questions all the time.

      I wouldn't do it for less than my price, and is it a "top guru" who is asking you to write for them. The ones I have written for always pay top money.
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[300718].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author ShayB
      Originally Posted by BizBooks View Post

      and a word of advice from someone I know:

      "do it for the education, even for free. do it for the contacts you'll make. Do it so you can say you ghostwrote a bestselling book for a bestselling author, which will help you in the future."

      if you were me, based on the circumstances, would you look at it as tuition and do it, even for free?

      if a "top guru" wanted you to do a project for them for close-to-nothing, but you would get to speak to them daily and meet the players in that field, would you jump at the opportunity...or run the other way?
      Sorry, but I disagree.

      I have learned something from every single freelance project I have done. It doesn't mean I work for free.

      To the OP:

      Don't throw away your time and effort just because someone else might work for free.

      Charge what you are worth. If the guru can't see your worth, then it is his/her loss.

      I really believe that if you undertake this project for peanuts, you will regret it.

      JMHO

      Good luck!
      Signature
      "Fate protects fools, little children, and ships called Enterprise." ~Commander Riker
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[300764].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author BizBooks
    What if, for example, this person is a New York Times bestselling author?

    would you think otherwise?

    (btw, the book will obviously be edited by that individual after i'm done...)

    (edited to add: i said FOR EXAMPLE- i'm not divulging who it is/was, thanks for asking!)
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[300797].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author ShayB
      Originally Posted by BizBooks View Post

      What if, for example, this person is a New York Times bestselling author?

      would you think otherwise?

      (btw, the book will obviously be edited by that individual after i'm done...)
      Honestly? No, I wouldn't.

      You are providing a service. A valuable service. You, IMHO, should be compensated for it.

      BUT, the decision is yours.
      Signature
      "Fate protects fools, little children, and ships called Enterprise." ~Commander Riker
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[300805].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author BizBooks
    I've emailed the gentlemen with a "thank you for the opportunity", and politely declined to do the work for free. having said that I added a paragraph about why I am a much better fit for the job...

    I'll update y'all when they respond.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[301708].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Bev Clement
    What difference does it make that they are a New York Times Bestseller? They won't put your name on the work, they should know how much work is involved and yet they want it done on the cheap.

    I'm confused, is the contract from a New York Times Bestseller or is the advice given to write for free from the NY Times Bestseller?

    I'm in contact with a NY Times Bestseller and it makes no difference, a published author is a published author. It also depends on how they made the list.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[301725].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author BizBooks
    i'm saying that "if the book would be published as the work of a NYT Bestselling author...."
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[301808].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Francis Chan
    Some years back, I was "invited" to conceptualize and create a business, online and offline as I am an considered an authority. I was offered a percentage of the company if it goes for public listing or a higher salary with no percentage. Hey! I was dreaming of going to drive a sports car to work in a high tech office so I opted for the lower salary with a percentage. My dream burst along with the Dot.com bubble in 2001. I regretted it ever since.

    The moral of the story? Do not be afraid to ask for what you think you are worth. They come to you because you are an authority. Do not be sidetracked by the idea that you can get exposure by including a byline etc.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[301856].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author MizzCindy
    That is a time-tested negotiating strategy. Introduce 'solid reasoning' for why the opponent (you) should lower your bid. And from your responses, it sounds like you are tempted.

    Don't undersell yourself. No matter what! It devalues the service you provide. Suppose this person comes to you again and wants you to work on another project. Do you think for one minute he/she will consider anything higher than what you quoted this go around?

    It's only my humble opinion here. You have to decide what is most important to you. Are you worth what the author is willing to pay? If not, I would decline. As a ghostwriter, you aren't likely to gain recognition, contacts or testimonials, so the only compensation will be monetary.

    Good luck! I hope you get what you're worth!

    Cindy
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[305374].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author BizBooks
    Thanks!

    from the poll, so far its 100% toward "don't do it for less"....

    PLUS...

    some googling found me some people quite annoyed at the author, so I realized that even if i became his "best friend" I might not want to hang out my shingle with the fellow....
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[305422].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author BizBooks
    Thank you for all your input!

    update, as promised...

    it looks like I did NOT get the gig...

    although now I am versed in how the ghostwriting field works, so I am definitely grateful for having gone through this experience!


    the question now becomes... should I write a book on that topic? I assume that that new book which will be out probably in 1-3 months would make alot of new google searches for such type of products??
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[307571].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author MizzCindy
    Yes, I think you should - as long as you already know it's going to be a 'buying' market. If you do, I see no reason not to pursue it. You said earlier you already have expert knowledge in this area, so make use of that!

    Good luck - I hope you make a killing!

    Cindy
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[308050].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author MicahF7
    Biz books... DO NOT make the mistake of asking to LITTLE... You can ALWAYS go down on the price but you CAN NEVER GO UP. This is a huge rule in business.



    Thanks,


    Micah Rush
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[351284].message }}

Trending Topics