There's a misnomer that ghostwriters are for lazy people but this isn't true. Are tax professionals for lazy people? Are IT professionals for lazy people? The unsaid truth is that you hire a professional to do something for you that you are either unable to do or unwilling to be trained and taught how to do.

Yes, Youtube is a "free university" but it takes time and commitment to sort through the thousands of worthless or unhelpful videos to find the channels that are most helpful and educational.

If you want to teach yourself, you must sort signal from noise.

Professionals who have done something for years have already done this. They've refined their theoretical knowledge in the forge of hands-on experience. They're not just aware of what to do but they're also faster at doing it because of muscle memory.

So, no, ghostwriting is not for lazy people.

It's for people who are ambitious enough to invest in the best possible outcome and humble enough to admit they can't do everything themselves.

Ghostwriting vs ghost-thinking

I used to "ghost-think" for clients. Ashley Faus introduced me to this term (*however, I lived the concept for a long time in my early ghostwriter days*):

Ashley Faus of Atlassian talks about ghostwriting clients wanting a ghost-thinker instead of a ghost-writer.

It's easy to ghost-think when you don't have a system in place to extract great ideas from your client. I've tried many things and approaches and have settled on this approach: Create content based on loosely guided conversations.

Basically I use conversations to prompt reflection. I believe reflection is the birthplace of insight. So instead of trying to hard to come up with great topics I usually ask the following questions:

  • What have you been thinking about lately?
  • What challenges are you facing right now?
  • What is one lesson you've recently learned?

Often, I'll follow up with more questions that dive deep into specific aspects of their reply. Or, if they aren't giving me much of an answer, I'll attempt to prompt them by asking about a past problem or question we've raised in a previous conversation.

Throughout the conversation, I take notes on content-worthy themes or topics using a notepad or a meeting note in Obsidian. I've tried recording and transcribing, but still come back to old-fashioned note-taking. It lets me pick and transcribe only the memorable and meaningful parts of the conversation. It also lets me read minds...

 Nailed it, this summarizes exactly how I feel.  You're in my head dude.

one of my ghostwriting clients

Are people who hire ghostwriters lazy? No. All a ghostwriter does is listen for signal that a client might have missed because they're too close to the noise.