Hi! Where have I been? Fighting with an unresponsive ghostwriting client, who is currently in breach of our contract. I’ve got new advice for you, though!
- Express your needs, as the writer, up front, in writing, as part of the contractual agreement. Just as an example: make sure you have client feedback written into your contract. Why? If you’re writing autobiographical material, you’re telling the story of someone else’s life. They can’t abdicate involvement in telling their personal story.
- Do not start work until you have the down payment check in your hand. Get a down payment on your work; I can’t emphasize this enough.
- Have payment schedules/and a list of who has access to what sensitive information set up before you begin work.
- If I haven’t said this before, I’ll do it now. Do not write for someone else without a formal contract. Why? It protects your interests, defines expectations, and gives you legal recourse (hopefully unnecessary) if things go wrong.
- Make sure you have defined options for dissolving the contract written in the document. In the situation I’m in, my client provided the contract, and I’m grateful he wrote all of these things into it. Why? Because I can call him onto the carpet for not fulfilling his legal responsibilities. Sure, I won’t make money on this, but I won’t be paying either.
So, there you go, my writing friends. This is a case study in things going wrong. Luckily, all I am is vastly annoyed, rather than legally liable for non-performance.
Take care, and drop by my blog or follow me on Twitter @crawford4033. I’ll be around, looking for work, and writing by brains out.