It seems that around $15,000 is the norm to ghostwrite a middle-grade book of 35,000 words. To me though, that seems like a lot of money. There are people out there who long to ‘write’ a book, but don’t know how or don’t have the time – that’s where a ghostwriter comes in.
According to Writer’s Market 2020, the lower-end pricing to ghostwrite with NO credit is $0.50 per word. The higher-end is $3.00 per word.
But, how many people can afford $15,000 or more to fulfill a dream?
Pricing is too low.
Because of this, I try to keep my fees affordable, within the reach of more people.
The same goes for writing picture books.
I’ve actually had potential clients call and question why my fee for ghosting a children’s picture book was low. And, I know I’ve lost a few projects because of this – I could tell they equated price with quality.
The same has happened with middle-grade projects.
So, what’s a writer to do?
While I have upped my fees, they are still extremely reasonable and under what other ghostwriters are charging.
Pricing higher will kill the dreams of those who want a quality book, but just can’t afford it.
Pricing is too high.
Yep, there is a flip side.
I’ve gotten queries from people who want to have a book written, but once they hear the price (the price that is too low for others), they can’t afford it.
But, getting back to the title question: Does price equate to quality?
NO! No, it doesn’t.
Over the years, I’ve ghosted and rewritten 300+ children’s books and gotten excellent testimonials from those who don’t mind sharing that they used my services. And, I have repeat clients. I currently have three clients who have each hired me to write a series of books. Along with this, one of my prior clients had interest from MADD based on a story I rewrote for her.
So, again, price does not equate to quality . . . at least not with some ghostwriters.
Sure, I can up my prices. But, again, those who can’t afford it wouldn’t be able to hire a quality writer.
I’ve written for people all over the world: Norway, Italy, Jordan, United Kingdom, Scotland, Saipan, United Arab Emirates, and many states within the United States. These people now have the satisfaction of being a ‘children’s author’ of a quality, publishable book they are proud to be author of. And, I’ve gotten to help them achieve that particular dream. That makes me smile.
How do you know who you’re hiring?
I know I said price doesn’t necessarily equal quality, but you do need to know who you’ll be working with. Here are a few tips to help you determine the quality of the writer:
1. Check out the ghostwriter’s testimonials, website, and blog.
2. See if the site and everything on it looks and sounds professional.
3. See if the blog posts give you an idea that the writer knows what she’s talking about.
4. You should also check out the About page. Learn who the writer is affiliated with and other tidbits of information.
5. Check the ghostwriter’s work.
6. Ask for samples of her or his writing.
Hot Tip: You should also do a Google search. That’s how most of my clients find me. Google goes for quality. They won’t put a ‘scam or shabby’ website in their results for a search query. This is a great test for quality, especially if the results (the link shown) isn’t a paid ad.
Summing it up.
As a writer for hire, there is no ‘magic’ pricing point. You have to charge what you and the clients who hire you are satisfied with.
Don’t always equate price with quality. While in some cases this does matter, it doesn’t always. Do some research into the children’s ghostwriter you’re thinking of working with. Using the tips I have just above, you should be able to determine if that writer knows her stuff.
MORE ON WRITING
NEED HELP WITH YOUR CHILDREN’S MANUSCRIPT / STORY?
Let me take a look at it. I’m a working children’s ghostwriter, rewriter, and editor. I can turn your story into a publishable book you’ll be proud of.
Send me an email at: kcioffiventrice @gmail .com (please put Children’s Writing Help in the Subject line)
This article was updated January 2018.