Anyway, I found the following article by Anna Davies about ghostwriting YA novels. I know that not everything in the publishing world works the way people think it does. For example, when you sell your book to a publisher, you sell your book to a publisher. That means they can basically do whatever they want to it. Depending on your contract, it’s possible that they can turn your book into something totally different from what you wrote.
But I’ve never worked on a project as large scale as juggernaut YA fiction. I knew ghostwriters existed, but I didn’t know it worked like this:
A lot of the major young adult series you see on the shelves — and the ones that have been translated onto the screen — are created by a group of editors, who come up with an outline for the story. For the first few books I wrote, I called out sick from my day job (sorry, work!) so I could head to a conference room and hash out plotlines along with three editors and the “real” writer — who did exist, and who approved all the books once they were written. Click here to read the whole article.
These books that began as the product of one mind can become the products of a group of editors and writers in a way that goes far beyond the author/editor/publisher partnerships that I’ve experienced.
Not that there’s anything wrong with this. But it can put things in a more realistic perspective for indie authors. To whom are we comparing ourselves? We might be comparing our one-person enterprise to a team of people who focus group the plots of their series before publication. Or to a writer who doesn’t even exist as an individual.
The cool thing is that indie authors can attain the same feats as these big name authors and writing teams. But remember not to compare yourself too harshly to them as you look out at the aisle of merchandise, movies, and TV shows.