Dr. Jennifer Banash shares the joys of working on ghostwriting and developmental editing projects with teen authors.
“Oh! The sample bottles for my skincare line are here!” she said breathlessly on our weekly Skype call, holding up the clear plastic containers for me to check out while she smiled broadly.
I couldn’t help laughing along with her infectious enthusiasm.
“Let’s talk about the chapters!” she said brightly, pulling out a notebook, pen poised expectantly over the paper, waiting for me to begin.
If she had been the CEO of a successful cosmetics company, it would’ve been par for the course in the world of ghostwriting and editing. But the fact of the matter was that my developmental editing client, who was currently writing her first novel, was 16 and a junior in high school. And in addition to the novel we were currently working on, she was also developing her own beauty brand, scheduled to be launched in 2020.
Welcome to today’s teen overachiever. A select group to be sure, but one that benefits greatly from the help of ghosts and editors. And working with them is surprisingly easier than you might expect.
Sure, I have to work around school schedules, exams, college applications and extracurricular activities, but in most cases, the energy, enthusiasm and sheer talent these teens bring to the experience is unparalleled.
They have a drive and determination to succeed, coupled with nearly boundless energy. To my surprise, instead of all of that puppy dog enthusiasm getting on my nerves, I found myself drinking it in, wanting to up my own sense of positivity and excitement to match their own. It fueled my own work too, rekindling interest in a novel that had languished in my hard drive for a year.
For the most part, teen ghostwriting and developmental editing clients are some of the hardest workers I’ve ever ghosted and edited for, and some of the most creative too. They’re not boxed in by prescriptive literary techniques they’ve learned in college or in writing workshops. They take risks as easily as taking a breath, and they take criticism better than some 60 year olds I’ve worked with. They’re hungry for knowledge. They want to learn. Which is why teen authors are some of my favorite clients to work with, hands down. They’ve got the moxie, the drive, and most of the time, the raw talent to take them past the finish line and beyond. Nothing makes me happier these days than getting a call from a teen client, inquiring about ghosting or editing services.
Now their parents? Well, that’s another story…
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