Twelve years ago, an author friend of mine asked if I’d like to ghostwrite a business book. I said yes. I didn’t set out to be a business ghostwriter specializing in books. Yet that’s how it happened.
I grew up near Oxford in England. After graduating from Winchester Art School I moved to the United States. As there were no job listings for a degree in fine art and philosophy, I got a sales job. At first, I was bad at it. I got fired. But three days later I found a better sales job. This job allowed me to grow, and after a while, I became interim corporate CEO in San Francisco. Interim doesn’t mean forever, so I started a multimedia business focusing on corporate storytelling.
My first chance to ghostwrite a business book showed me how my previous experience in sales, management, and communication could be put to better use. I’ve been ghostwriting books ever since.
I continue to learn about business (and life) from my clients. And most say they have learned something of value from me. Each book I’ve written has been a learning experience. Yet, three non-professional experiences continue to bring a fresh perspective to my work.
First, I’m a founder member and ex-president of Warehouse Evening Toastmasters in Oakland, California, a non-profit organization dedicated to communication and leadership. Our group has a lot of fun practicing the art of speech writing and delivery.
Second, I’ve benefited from being part of a theatrical improvisation group. “Improv” teaches you to think on your feet.
Third, over a period of five years, I moderated a weekly Socratic philosophy group. This was enormous fun and boosted my critical-thinking skills. I learned to listen and ask more insightful follow-up questions. And that’s relevant because interviewing is an integral part of the ghostwriter’s job. I believe that asking the right questions— and listening to the responses— just might be the secret of life.
I’m a constant reader. When not reading or writing, I’m on the badminton court, swimming laps, or practicing my 21-year daily meditative practice of qigong.
I live in the San Francisco Bay Area with Lynnette Rogers who’s such a good editor that I married her.
If you’d like to know more about me, just ask.