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Thursday, June 22, 2006

Ghostwriting for Lost

I'm a big proponent of ghost-writing--and not just because it's one of the ways I support my family.

To me, it makes sense that you would pair someone who has a story to tell with someone who has writing skills. It can be a perfect matchup that respects one's readers.

But I do have to wonder what the conversation was between ABC, Hyperion, and ghostwriter/thriller novelist Laurence Shames.

"Hi, Laurence? We'd like you to ghost write a thriller for us."

"Great! Who will I be working with?"

"Actually, you won't be working with anyone."

"Oh, so there won't be a name on the cover?"

"There will be--it's just that the person doesn't exist."

"So, I'm ghosting for a ghost?"

In fact, Laurence Shames, a former ethics columnist for Esquire and author of such books as The Naked Detective and Tropical Depression, ghost wrote Bad Twin for a fictional character from the ABC hit television show, Lost. The book was published under the name Gary Troup and managed to sell 30,000 copies. There was speculation that it had been written by Stephen King.

I wonder if this is a trend that we'll start to see from the media conglomerates--books written to promote television shows. Personally, I think it a pretty entertaining marriage.

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