Ghostwriter Diaries 04

NotebookI’m done! My three-chapter sample for the fantasy novel is complete. Yesterday I finished writing, this morning I edited the manuscript, and I’ve just emailed it to my client. All that’s left is to sit back and perform the hardest task of all – one which all writers face on a regular basis.

Wait.

The final writing session threw up a minor problem – one I’ve encountered before with ghostwriting projects – namely plausibility. When you’re following a tight outline, occasionally you find yourself having to write a scene you don’t quite believe in. This happened in the last chapter of the sample, when I had to bring to life a piece of dramatic action that sounded great on paper – and included some terrific imagery – but which, when I really analysed it, didn’t quite add up.

Confidentiality means I can’t go into detail. Let’s just say my challenge as a ghostwriter was to find sensible reasons for a particular event I found a little hard to swallow. Actually, it didn’t prove too hard. However, other similar projects I’ve worked on have occasionally forced me to make more drastic changes to the action in order to make things hold together. That means going back to the story team and saying, ‘Uh, I think what you wrote isn’t working. How about this?’ And that’s fine. As long as your reasons for changing things are good – and consistent with the original intention – they’re usually well-received.

My next post in this series will, unsurprisingly, be entitled “Ghostwriter Diaries 05”. I’m not sure when it will appear – that depends on my client – but, when it does, it’s likely to contain one of two statements. The first is something along the lines of, “Well, I didn’t get the gig, hey-ho, on to the next.” The second is, “Holy crap, I’ve got twelve weeks to write the rest of the damn novel!”

Stay tuned, and you’ll find out which it’s to be.

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