We may be professional ghostwriters now, but not one of us started off that way. Some of us were journalists, bankers, marketers and even musicians. While we may have worn many different hats, there is no doubt that these different experiences have made us better writers. This is why we firmly believe that, here at United Ghostwriters, we are best positioned to give our clients professional advice, help them write great, high-quality books and guide them through different types of publishing processes. Oh, and our media contacts aren’t too bad either . . .
Ghosts on Television
Ever browsed our site and thought that some our ghostwriters looked familiar? Well, you might well be right, especially as a few of our ghosts have been in the spotlight lately.
Our very own Shannon Kyle appeared on Newsnight this year to talk about the effects of social media on teenagers. Being interviewed by well-known presenter Evan Davis in front of millions was no easy feat, but Shannon articulated her views clearly and confidently. All of us here at United Ghostwriters were very proud of her!
Fellow UG member Cheryl Rickman faced off against the infamous Piers Morgan on Good Morning Britain while discussing genderless clothes for children – and more than held her own. As well as being a ghostwriter, Cheryl is an ambassador for the campaign group Let Clothes Be Clothes – a group focused on reducing stereotypes and encouraging children to be proud of who they are, without gender-based restrictions. Because of Cheryl’s hard work, one major department store, John Lewis, has already removed gender labels from all its children’s clothing. Quite an impressive outcome, indeed.
Former journalist Teena Lyons used to be a fairly regular pundit on Sky News, and more recently has been interviewed several times on BBC regional radio on the subject of ghostwriting.
Ghosts as Journalists
Did you know that some of us ghosts regularly write for top publications? Back in the day, Shannon Kyle was nominated for the Press Gazette ‘Young Journalist of the Year’, and has since been published in the Telegraph, the Huffington Post, Take a Break, the Sunday People, Pick Me Up, the Guardian, and the Mirror.
Ian Shircore has had more than 30 years in journalism, working for overseas papers like The Australian in Sydney, and the South China Morning Post in Hong Kong, as well as UK publications ranging from the Spectator and the Observer to Campaign and Time Out.
Like Shannon, Cheryl and Ian, Caro Handley has a great deal of experience in journalism. Caro used to be a feature writer for Woman magazine, a reporter for the Daily Mail, assistant editor of Woman’s Own and assistant editor at the Sunday Express Magazine. Over the last decade, Caro has worked for a wide variety of magazines, including stints as agony aunt for Chat magazine and later for Good Housekeeping.
Ghosts as Authors
Not only are some of our ghosts experienced journalists and media contributors, but many of us are also authors in our own right. There are too many books to list here, but we have included a brief sample of our own work:
Close of Play was shortlisted for the People’s Book Prize Summer Showcase in 2015.
The Dragon Awakes, a series of four crime novels set in China in the 1990s, is to be reissued soon. The first in the series, Death of a Blue Lantern, was nominated for Best First Novel at the 1995 World Mystery Convention.
Secrets of the Singer Girls
The Allotment Girls
The Sewing Bee
The Wedding Girls
The Ants Are My Friends (Portico, 2007)
A Steroid Hit the Earth (Portico, 2008)
365 Everyday Games and Pastimes (Square Peg, 2010)
Infographica (Quercus, 2012)
Crap Crimes (Random House, 2013)
Sportographica (Quercus, 2014)
The Great Emoji Quiz Book (Cassell, 2016)
The Complete Guide to Ghostwriting
Entrepreneurship (SAGE 2017)
Organizational Behavior (SAGE 2016)
Management Second Edition (Wiley 2016)
Doing Business the Alan Sugar Way‘ (Wiley-Capstone 2010)
How to Succeed as a Freelancer in Publishing (How To Books, 2010)
Conspiracy! 49 Reasons to Doubt, 50 Reasons to Believe (2012) – still Amazon’s best-selling conspiracies book.
Beg, Steal or Borrow, the authorised biography of Peter Doherty’s band, Babyshambles
Spencer is also a screenwriter and was a finalist in the C21 Media Drama Series Competition, where he was mentored by Line of Duty creator/writer, Jed Mercurio.
The Small Business Start-Up Workbook – best-seller on Amazon since its 2004 publication
The Digital Business Start-Up Workbook – translated into a number of languages.
The Business Book Outline Builder, winner of the 2017 APEX award for publishing excellence.
Ginny is also in the process of writing a full-length book on business book writing (watch this space).
Eurovision! A History of Modern Europe through the World’s Greatest Song Contest Described by Graham Norton as ‘a feast’, and selected for the Radio 2 Book Club.
Perfect Written English – part of a series of guides from Random House.
Ever wonder what we did before we became ghostwriters? Here, some of our writers talk about life before ghostwriting.
“Before becoming a ghostwriter, I worked in the City and gigged with a jazz band called The Oxcentrics. Although the drums are now in the attic, they come out every now and then for band reunions!” Chris West.
“I used to be a senior commissioning editor at Penguin and a publishing director at HarperCollins. In that time, I commissioned, edited and published hundreds of books – from Penguin Classics to works of reference to toilet books and narrative non-fiction.” Martin Toseland
“Prior to becoming freelance, I worked for a multimedia company, managing its summary-writing team and Reuters brief.” Spencer Honniball
“In my past life, I worked for 18 years in marketing and for three years in social media management, giving me a special insight into the world of business and an unparalleled expertise in helping my clients become authors of books that sell and promote their businesses.” Ginny Carter
“I worked in academia as a Politics lecturer at Edinburgh University, Stirling University and the Open University. I also spent about six years in journalism, writing features across the board, but specialising in socio-political op-ed, particularly relating to sexual politics. A chance interview led me to ghostwriting and I’ve never gone back.” Linda Watson-Brown
“I trained as a counsellor/psychotherapist and although I decided not to pursue this as a career, it has been enormously useful to me in my work as a writer.” Caro Handley
“I spent almost a decade working in investment banking as a marketing executive. Although I was writing, I wanted more variety, which thanks to ghostwriting, is exactly what I have now!” Emma Murray
Emma Murray is a best-selling author and ghostwriter, specialising in business, psychology and higher education. She also ghosts books, blogs, articles, case studies, and book proposals.