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Outsourcing helps ghostwriters reclaim more time for writing.

I’m sure you’ve heard that to grow or scale, business owners need to be ready to hand off work to others — to outsource or delegate it — and the more the better.

I agree with that idea. I also think that advice also applies to ghostwriters, to a point.

Ghostwriters are for-profit business owners, whether they’re solopreneurs or agency owners. They sell their writing services to individuals, corporations, small businesses, nonprofits, and/or government agencies. Sometimes they may even serve other ghostwriters who have asked for writing support when they become overwhelmed.

Hiring help

It makes sense to retain independent contractors or freelancers in order to increase the capacity of their ghostwriting business. That’s my message in this recent Warp article on the subject:

I outsource some of the work required to do my writing job well. I’ve recruited and vetted specialists who are frequently better at completing certain tasks than I am (including all things graphic design, incidentally).

These specialists include online researchers who dig for the perfect statistic or case study to help make my ghostwriting client’s point and editors who review my drafts and point out information gaps or inconsistencies I missed. I have a virtual assistant, Google Ads agency, website support provider, and SEO team that help manage the back end of my online presence, so that I don’t have to. Sometimes I’ll hire a delivery service to run errands for me so that I don’t have to interrupt my day to buy a new black toner cartridge or pick up my dry cleaning.

Outsourcing these types of tasks allows me to stay focused on what I’m best at — the writing itself. I don’t have to worry about any other part of the creative process or administrivia associated with my business, which frees me up to craft and then polish writing assignments for my clients.

By remaining focused on improving my writing skills and on delivering the best possible product to my clients, I can be the best ghostwriter for my clients possible.

Drawing the line on outsourcing

However, I’m not willing to outsource anything and everything in the name of efficiency, no matter how big a fan I am of being super productive. I have limits.

What I don’t do, is outsource writing work without my client’s knowledge and approval.

To me, that’s only fair.

If a ghostwriting client is hiring me to help draft their book and spends dozens of hours being interviewed by me, answering myriad questions, and being vulnerable and open about their business, they expect that I will then leverage all of that information in order to tell their story. I suspect they would be disappointed if I simply handed all of those transcripts and personal notes over to someone else to weave the story together. After all, didn’t I tout my writing ability as the reason they should hire me over another ghostwriter?

So, while I hold onto all of the writing work, from strategizing to brainstorming to interviewing to outlining, writing, and revising, I’m simultaneously doing my best to outsource nearly everything else.