I notice when I go out networking many people haven’t actually heard of a ghostwriter.
No, it’s nothing to do with ghost stories.
I write for other people, then fade away, like a ghost.
The two best known examples are celebrity ‘autobiographies’ and speeches.
While I’m sure a few very famous people have really written their own stories, for the most part they are too busy, and writing may not be their thing. So they hire a special person to come in and work with them and through a series of interviews, with them, and perhaps with their families, the ghostwriter is able to portray the story they want to share, in their words. If the celebrity has published articles, those can be incorporated as well.
Politicians and other public figures often do not write every speech they give. They work with very special professionals who can take their own word choices and speech patterns, as well as an understanding of their platform, whatever it may be, and they create a speech very much like the person would have written, if they had the time. The best of the public speakers then take these speeches and adjust them, alter them, personalize them, until they are exactly right. Speech writers are a special segment of ghostwriters.
Take that concept and apply it to the business world. Does the average CEO write their own blog? How about prominent lawyers? I suspect most of them work with a writing professional.
It’s an effective, efficient way to get your thoughts out, while limiting the time you take to do something you don’t like to do, you don’t feel that you do well, or that you just plain don’t want to do.