Written on February 2, 2013 by  /  with no comments  /  in the Guest Posts category.

Signing A Contract With A Ghostwriter: What It Should Include

Whether you are hiring a ghostwriter for the very first time or you have never considered using a contract before, it is time you learn the importance of this document and what should be included in it. The contract is extremely important in order to clarify all of the details of the project well before any writing begins or any payment is made. Without a contract, the project could be up for miscommunication and serious problems that could cost you money and time. How, though, do you know what should be included in this contract? You don’t have to be a lawyer to ensure you are signing the right document. All you need to do is learn what should be included and what is most important in the ghostwriting contract in order to protect your interests as well as those of the writer.

Ownership of the Project

The contract should spell out very clearly who will own the copyrights to the project. Because you are hiring a ghostwriter, you should be the one that owns the copyright since this is the very nature of ghostwriting. However, there are occasional cases when ghostwriters will request a percentage of the copyrights. You will need to ensure that this information is spelled out very clearly in order avoid future problems.

Money Matters

Details of the money and pricing should also be included, and that means much more than just how much the project will cost. You should ensure that the contract spells out the following:

  • The total amount that will be charged for the writing.
  • The amount (if any) that will be charged for revisions or rewrites.
  • The payment schedule (usually a percentage up front and then the rest in either payments or upon project completion).
  • How much will be due upon cancellation of project from either party.

It is important to ensure all money matters are covered in the contract. This will avoid any confusion as to when you should pay and how much you should pay for the writing you need done.


It is always important to establish confidentiality. Confidentiality agreements should cover information included in the writing, information provided to you, and information that you provide the writer. Confidentiality is important since you will not want your information provided to others who may use it in their own writing project. This could compromise your whole project should information be given out.

Author Obligation

It is the obligation of the author, once the project has been started, to follow a deadline that you and they have agreed upon. The contract should indicate that you can expect your project turned in to you on a deadline basis or you have the right to cancel the request. If this is not established, the process of writing your project could drag on for a very long time, which could cost you money and can be frustrating.


You may simply assume that since you have hired a ghostwriter, you will have the right to determine who is listed as the author. This is commonly the case, but you should always make sure this is spelled out in the contract in order to avoid any problems in the future. As mentioned, the whole purpose of the contract is to ensure everything is spelled out and clarified for the protection of both parties involved.

When you hire a ghostwriter, always ensure that a contract is agreed upon and signed by both you and the writer. This is the best way to ensure that your project goes off without a hitch and without any frustrating miscommunication that could cause a variety of problems and could cost you money.

Valerie Mellema is the owner of Words You Want, a ghostwriting service offering SEO packages, eBook writing and more.