It would seem appropriate, in this halloween season, to write about ghosts & goblins. But, is that what a ghostwriter is?
According to Wikipedia:
A ghostwriter is a writer who is hired to author literary or journalistic works, speeches or other texts that are officially credited to another person.
Those lofty words spoken by Barack Obama, during his two terms in the presidential office, were predominantly written by someone else. Yes, apparently Obama is an accomplished writer, having been a former editor of the Harvard Law Review. Nevertheless, the majority of his public speeches were written by an army of ghostwriters under the supervision of a Whitehouse Director of Speechwriting.
Have you ever heard of Jon Favreau or Cody Keenan? I didn’t think so.
Yet, the entire world was mesmerized by the content of Obama’s speeches and his skills as an orator. The people behind the scenes did not receive the public credit due them.
That is the life of a ghostwriter – all work and no credit given.
As a former professional communicator, I have had my fair share of speech and article writing on behalf of another. I was paid to do a particular job and had to be satisfied with that alone. Yet, it has never ceased to amaze me how CEO’s, Directors, and Politicians alike have accumulated mass followings based on their lofty words – the content or literary emphasis being the brainchild of someone else.
Another creative area similar to ghostwriting, is the photographic works that individuals produce. Often those works are produced by individuals for the companies that employ them or are directly commissioned by government. Personally, I have had considerable work published and/or displayed in public spaces that I will never receive credit for. All credit and copyright belong to either the company(s) that employed me, or are the public property of government. That is the nature of commissioned works of art, at least in my neck-of-the-woods.
It may seem that I am a little bitter about that – truthfully, I am not. But, I do visit the aforementioned places approximately once a year or so. I wander through the halls of these majestic public buildings searching for photographic works that I had something to do with, in whole or in part. What was done in “secret” as a ghost photographer is sufficient for me 🙂
Now that I am considerably far removed from the hustle and bustle of the work world, I am quite content. I had invested a significant part of my life in being a ghostwriter and a commercial photographer. I have no regrets.
As an amateur blogger, I do not feel the pressures of corporate deadlines, nor the need to be overly concerned about content. Grammar, spelling, sentence structure, etc. are secondary to just having fun.
Whatever tickles your fancy. Have fun 🙂