Why Apologies Are More Effective Without Explanations

As the pace of pace of apologies by business people responding to accusations of sexual misconduct accelerates, the apologies are not keeping up. One reason is that too many apologizers burden their apologies with explanations. Celebrity chef Mario Batali runs a restaurant empire worth about $250 million. Recently accused of […] Read more

Ghostwriting Compensation: Too Much or Too Little?

Both potential clients and fellow ghostwriters are uncertain about ghostwriting fees.  Clients always want to know what the ranges are.  Fellow ghostwriters always feel they are not charging enough or perhaps they are charging too much. It’s all a muddle.   I wish there was more transparency in the fees […] Read more

My Five Nevers of Ghostwriting Success

Looking back over my three decades of ghostwriting, I realize that every bad client experience I had was really my own fault. In each case, I ignored the flashing red warning signs. I’m not claiming that these rules are absolute for every ghostwriter, nor that they will protect you in […] Read more

A Tale of Two Apologies

Recently two high profile companies experienced high-visibility failures. Travis Kalanick, the founder and CEO of the ride sharing firm Uber, issued an apology following a belligerent conversation he had with an Uber driver. Also, Pricewaterhousecoopers (PwC), the accounting firm working with the Oscars award ceremony, mishandled the distribution of envelopes […] Read more

Code of Ethics for Professional Ghostwriters

Because ghostwriters engage in activities that by invitation impact the lives of our clients, and because our conduct carries with it significant responsibilities, and because we desire the benefits of being treated as professionals, it behooves ghostwriters to accept the responsibilities of professionals guided by a Code of Ethics. This […] Read more

How to Read a Book Proposal

A book proposal is not the book.  It is the sizzle, without even the steak. This distinction, so clear to experienced publishers, is often confusing to beginning authors and corporate clients. I’m a ghostwriter specializing in getting CEOs and other executives published by traditional publishers.  My corporate clients hire me […] Read more

Groping towards Apology

Donald Trump and Ari Shavit Respond to Accusations Two prominent men.  Two accusations of serial sexual harassment. Two prominent apologies, both fundamentally flawed—though one attempt was much more complete than the other—that demonstrates why apologies should be immediate, avoid explanations and, above all, be brief. Donald Trump and Ari Shavit, […] Read more

Trump and the Dance of the Past Offense Apology

Most people have enough difficulty apologizing for their behavior in the moment.  Apology becomes even more complicated when it comes to apologizing for events that occurred in the past but are only recently disclosed. That’s the situation facing Donald Trump. The Washington Post disclosed a 2005 video and audio of […] Read more