The Importance of Fact Checking as a Ghostwriter
When you write a non-fiction story in the form of a book, novel or even an essay, it’s important that you make sure that you’ve got your facts right. A lot of writers make the mistake of not using multiple sources or ensuring the accuracy of statements and stats that they cite from such sources. In Journalism, fact checking is a big deal and without it, work doesn’t get published. For the sake of your work, even as a ghostwriter, you need to include fact checking in your proofreading process.
Wrong Facts Can Damage Your Client’s Credibility
As a ghostwriter, your client is your business. To keep your business going, you need to ensure their satisfaction. Simply writing a piece of work that reads well isn’t all there is to writing, especially if the project involves factual writing. If you allow your client to publish an article, book or even script that you’ve written that has facts mixed up or outright wrong, then it can lead to your client losing his or her credibility. Knowing the facts is important for non-fiction works. There will be people reading it that know the facts and will point out your inaccuracies, which will make your client look bad and could even lead to a downfall in sales or readership. If you’re lucky, an editor will catch the errors, but then this would lead to the next issue.
Misinformation Can Damage Your Reputation
If you scored a big project with a client that is getting published by a leading Web site, magazine, newspaper or publisher, then you want to make a great impression. Even with the smaller clients, you should aim for perfection. When a project goes south because you failed to fact check your work before submission, word can spread quickly about your poor workmanship and lead to your reputation being tarnished. Coming back from this can be hard, especially once your name has been tied to such issues. This is something no writer wants to have to deal with — being discredited and devalued. Fact checking is a simple process that could save your business, your client’s name and can even save your reputation.
Legal Problems Can Be Costly
There are some wrong facts that can be overlooked and others that can’t. When a statement you placed in a piece of work is untrue and defames someone or deals with a controversial matter, it can lead to legal issues. Being sued by a person or entity can be a career buster for the writer and ghostwriter. In some cases, the issue can be blown into a big deal by the media, like in the case between Governor Jesse Venutra and U.S. Navy Seal Chris Kyle, writer of the Iraq memoir turned film called American Sniper. In these legal battles, the end result could lead to the plaintiff being awarded millions of dollars from the writer and the publisher. These issues could put a damper on you financially, since you may have to pay up for the lawsuit and your future business could be inhibited.
Correct Facts Can Make You an Authority
When you know your stuff, it puts you in the room of authoritative writers. Even if you don’t know certain facts by heart, the fact that you can get information that is accurate is good enough. People can trust your work and even use it as a reference for their own works. As a ghostwriter, your name isn’t on the work you produce, but just in knowing that you have quality work being published is a great feeling and it can award you with more business. You will be helping to give your clients a good reputation, which could in turn give you a good reputation. Get testimonials from your clients and reviews from readers of your work and use that to win more clients.
As a ghostwriter, it’s important that you not underestimate fact checking. It has always been a necessity in the world of journalism and in general writing. Anytime you’re writing content that is factual, make sure you’ve got your fact straight. If you don’t have the time to do it yourself, you can always hire a fact checker to act as a second pair of eyes.
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