You’d like to have someone help you write your memoir, but you’re not sure what it will cost to hire a ghostwriter.
Your search through ghostwriters’ websites hasn’t provided the answer, as many ghostwriters do not list their fees.
The simplest thing to do is call the ghostwriters you’re interested in and ask. But before you do, here’s some background on memoir ghostwriters and cost.
What does it cost to hire a ghostwriter?
For a full-length memoir, which runs about 200 pages or 60,000 words in length, the fee charged by ghostwriters in the United States ranges anywhere from $20,000 to $250,000, and sometimes even more.
Why such a wide range? It has to do with experience, speed, special knowledge, and extra services, among other things.
Experience counts when hiring a ghostwriter!
Some ghostwriters have been writing memoirs for years—even decades—for people in diverse fields like law, medicine, business, politics, and more. As a result, they’ve developed a wealth of knowledge they bring to each new project. And because they’ve worked on so many books, they have already faced just about every kind of problem—projects falling behind schedule or going off-track, and so on—and they know exactly what to do.
Those with long resumes have also worked with many different types of people, and are usually adept at adapting to a wide range of personal styles, whether the active “hands-on” kinds of clients or the more laid-back, “you-do-it-for-me” types.
There is a great deal of value in experience! For many clients, it’s worth the extra cost to engage a ghostwriter who is not only capable but ready to handle any eventuality. (For more on getting the right ghostwriter, see “How to Hire a Ghostwriter in 9 Steps.”
Ask about the ghostwriter’s specialties
Some ghostwriters possess certain knowledge that could be useful in creating your memoir. Perhaps they are very familiar with a certain historical era, they understand your culture well, they are well-versed in your business or favorite hobby, or they speak your native language.
At times, speed may be a factor, and you may be willing to pay to have your memoir written rapidly. Some ghostwriters specialize in working very quickly, while still producing top-quality work. Be aware, though, that you will have to do your part swiftly as well, reading and commenting on the drafts as soon as they are created.
How about extra services?
Some ghostwriters charge a relatively low fee because they simply put your thoughts down on paper as you present them, then arrange them in chapter form.
Higher level ghostwriters will spend a great deal of time with you before the writing even begins. They will kick ideas around with you, strengthen your memoir’s concept, and develop a story arc. They may also interview certain important people in your life and conduct research on your behalf. Then, the ghostwriter may produce several drafts of each chapter before arriving at the final polished version. Naturally, all of this time and effort will require compensation.
So what does it cost to hire a ghostwriter? And is it worth the cost?
Hiring a memoir ghostwriter is a big step—one that should be considered carefully. If you want to produce an insightful, well-written look at a special time in your life, it will be worth the extra money to find an experienced, proficient ghostwriter who will go the extra mile for you.
If you’d like help writing your book…
Contact memoir ghostwriters Barry Fox and Nadine Taylor. Use the contact form on this page to send us a message, or call us at 818-917-5362.
You can learn more about ghostwriters and ghostwriting in general on our “Professional Ghostwriter” page.