Building Your Business…and Pursuing Your Passions

I’m still digesting Joey’s post from last week, “The Ghost Materializes“. Thankfully, on Friday morning, I was able to get together to hang out with both Joey and Ed over a cup of coffee. It was a great time to catch up on what’s going on in each other’s lives and work, and to discuss writing and ghostwriting.

Joey’s post, as I told the guys, was poignant for me as I’ve been feeling the itch to begin writing a novel of my own. I was great to talk about how we might balance careers as ghostwriters and vocations as writers. For Joey, it means creating some revenue streams through some great projects he’s been working on like 26Blocks. I encourage you to check out Joey’s project, which Ed was a contributor for. It’s very cool.

For me, it’s meant taking advantage of my success as a ghostwriter to expand my company from just me to others working under my company to service clients. I now have a project with a great client, which I’ve brought a sub-contractor under Elevate to do the majority of the writing. I’m doing project management and reviewing work as it is produced, giving input as needed. This has worked well for me, and has freed me up to focus on some things that I’m passionate about while allowing me to keep my core business moving forward. I’m thankful for that opportunity.

Over the next year or two, I’m going to be working on my own novel. I’ve been lucky enough to build up some great relationships with editors and agents, and I think it’s time to produce something of my own that might be of interest to them. I’ll still be ghostwriting, working on projects with client’s whom I love and whose work I’m passionate about, and I’ll be working with new clients with my model of sub-contracting and project management.

Very few of us woke up and decided our life’s call was to be a ghostwriter. I mused on that a couple weeks back in my post, “The Plight of the Ghostwriter“. I know for me, I fell into it. It was good money and enjoyable work that kept me on task to write every day. Very few aspiring writers could ever dream of being so lucky.

Thankfully, we don’t have to create a dichotomy between being writers and being ghostwriters. It just takes a little creativity—and maybe a little sacrifice, either on the client/income side or on the time/opportunity side. But the beauty of pursuing passions is that you rarely feel the full brunt of your sacrifices. They’re most often blunted by the thrill of doing something that burns deep within you.

I’ve been thankful for getting to know Joey and Ed over the years. I’ve learned much from them and gained much inspiration. I’m also thankful for the community we’re building here at Please, do engage. As writers and ghostwriters, we need each other. It’s a lonely profession and one that benefits from robust dialogue.

Coming to the end of this post, I want you to think about your passions. Have you put them on the sidelines to pursue other people’s passions for them? If so, how do you plan on balancing both the demands of writer-for-hire and your own personal ambitions? For those of you who’ve found the balance, what’s the secret?

Till next week, happy writing!

[Photo by Kacey]