Ghostwriting Scandals—and How to Avoid Them

Ghostwriting Scandals—and How to Avoid Them


Many authors work with ghostwriters. It’s a perfectly accepted practice in the publishing world, and a great way to write a book and get it published when you have a compelling story to tell but don’t have the writing experience or time to do it yourself. As Kevin Anderson told the Washington Post, “A ghostwriter is an interpreter and a translator, not an author, which is why our clients deserve full credit for authoring their books.”

While the book-writing services that we provide are professional and aboveboard, some authors and ghostwriters haven’t been so scrupulous. There have been several high-profile ghostwriting scandals in the publishing industry. That’s why it’s important to make sure that your ghostwriter is a professional—someone who understands the publishing industry, as well as your needs and goals. When you work with our ghostwriters and book editors, you’ll have a professional experience from start to finish.

Here are two notable ghostwriting scandals. If you work with us, we’ll ensure that nothing like this happens to you.

Gwyneth Paltrow’s Cookbook Scandal

In 2012, cookbook ghostwriter Julia Moskin published an article in the New York Times about her experience ghostwriting cookbooks for famous chefs. Her piece included quotes from a number of other writers who provided book-writing and ghostwriting services to chefs and celebrities—and ended up exposing some ghostwriting clients. In particular, one of Moskin’s sources, Julia Turshen, mentioned her work as a ghostwriter for Gwyneth Paltrow. Paltrow took to Twitter to deny the allegation, and a number of other celebrities and chefs expressed outrage.

The truth is that many cookbooks are ghostwritten anonymously. But that’s no excuse for breaking client-writer confidentiality. When you work with a professional ghostwriter, you need to make sure to have them sign a non-disclosure agreement if you don’t want them to reveal their assistance with your book. A professional ghostwriter should always respect your right to confidentiality.

The Profiles in Courage Mystery

John F. Kennedy won the Pulitzer Prize for his 1957 book Profiles in Courage, a collection of short, inspirational, biographical portraits of U.S. State Senators.

Ever since the book was published, though, there have been questions about who wrote it. In all likelihood, it was ghostwritten by Ted Sorensen, Kennedy’s speechwriter, with Kennedy’s collaboration and supervision.

Sorensen says that the book was a collaborative effort and that Kennedy contributed a considerable amount of work. Kennedy also thanked Sorensen in the book’s introduction. But questions over the book’s authorship remain.

If you work with a professional ghostwriter, they’ll put your interests first. They’ll be discreet and respectful of your wishes.

Our ghostwriters are consummate professionals, with experience publishing books in a wide range of fields. We offer comprehensive book-writing and book-editing services, and we’re eager to help you tell your story. Contact us today to find out more.

Blog, Ghostwriting Services