Tony Schwartz, the ghostwriter responsible for The Art of the Deal—and he seems to think, Donald Trump himself—has come forward to say that he pretty much hates Donald Trump and is sorry he wrote the book. One of his grudges seems to be that Trump claimed to have written the book that Mr. Schwartz himself wrote, seeming to miss the point of what ghostwriting is. “If he could lie about that on Day One—when it was so easily refuted—he is likely to lie about anything,” Schwartz is quoted as saying in reference to Trump taking credit for TotD.
Punchnel’s is no fan of Donald Trump, but we are a little puzzled by the hatred heaped upon the very concept of ghostwriting. Especially by someone who chose to be one—for a while, at least.
The Amazon page for The Art of the Deal contains a number of negative reviews penned by indignant citizens who have just found out that Trump hired someone to write the book. We think there are a plethora of other issues to worry about in regard to Donald Trump.
But then again, ghostwriting is a mostly reviled trade. Even a sympathetic bio of a very successful ghostwriter contains passages about downtrodden ghostwriters and the egomaniacal buffoons who employ them.
So what’s good about ghostwriting?
It’s a good way for young writers to enter the field, and these days there is plenty of opportunity to ghostwrite blog posts that no one is likely to read. But there is also plenty of opportunity to be taken for a ride in a low paying environment; especially if you answer Craigslist ads looking for ghostwriting. Craigslist has a way of being shady in every permutation it takes.
But maybe ghostwriting is good for the soul, says an article penned by Danielle Wolffe (if that’s her real name). The main thing that stands out here is the phrase “Ghostwriters either share credit with the person the story is about; or disappear and gracefully let him/her take full credit.” Ghostwriters help stories get told. Stories you probably want to read or maybe read back in the day.
Image by Jon Sullivan – Bodie Typewriter, PDPhoto.org, Public Domain