33 Hilarious Reasons Why the Ghostwriting Book Process is Like Giving a Cat a Pill

The Ghostwriting Book ProcessThere’s a famous saying: “Writing a book is like trying to put a pill in a cat’s mouth. If you’ve ever tried it, you know it’s a herculean task.” Okay, maybe no one’s ever said that, but it captures the essence of what we’re about to dive into.

You see, a book isn’t just a collection of words or a passageway to different worlds. It’s a feral beast that can claw, scratch, and bite. And just like our feline friends, it requires patience, dedication, and a good dose of cunning to handle.

Now, let’s imagine you’re not the owner but the vet who has to administer the pill. In this case, the book is your client’s beloved pet, and you’re the ghostwriter who’s been called in to do the job. Let’s pull on our sturdiest gloves, ready our tastiest treats, and delve into the wild, wacky world of the ghostwriting book process.

'How to give a cat a pill' read by Peter Egan


The Similarities Between the Ghostwriting Book Process and Giving a Cat a Pill

  1. The Prep Talk (Drafting the Outline): When you give a cat a pill, you’ve got to be mentally prepared. The same goes for the first stage of the ghostwriting book process. You draft the book outline, laying out the chapters like you’re plotting your strategy to deal with a feisty feline. It’s essential to be ready for scratches (AKA plot holes) and unexpected pounces (sudden inspiration or changes).
  2. The Initial Encounter (Meeting the Author): When you first try to coax the cat towards you, it’s much like your initial encounter with the author. You have to create a connection, a sense of trust, while silently promising you won’t turn their life’s story into a horror show. This interaction sets the tone for the rest of the ghostwriting book process.
  3. The First Attempt (Writing the First Draft): As you open the cat’s mouth to pop in the pill, you begin the first draft. The suspense builds as you attempt to capture the author’s voice, style, and ideas. It’s about as nerve-wracking as seeing the cat eyeing you suspiciously.
  4. Why the ghostwriting book process is challenging sometimesRetrieval and Attempt Two (Revising the Draft): Much like when the cat spits out the pill and you have to retrieve it, the first draft rarely sticks. You go back, revise, change phrases, adjust styles – it’s all part of the iterative ghostwriting book process.
  5. The Replacement (Bringing in a Fresh Perspective): When the cat refuses to take the soggy pill, you have to bring in a fresh one. Just like when you need to bring a fresh perspective into your writing. You incorporate feedback, adjust the tone, and keep refining the manuscript in the ghostwriting book process.
  6. The Hold and Pop (Setting a Schedule): The tricky part of giving a cat a pill often comes when you have to hold the cat and simultaneously pop the pill in its mouth. This step in the ghostwriting book process is much like setting and sticking to a writing schedule. You have to manage your time, discipline yourself, and simultaneously produce quality work – all while under the careful gaze of the author (or the cat).
  7. Retreat and Regroup (Taking Author Feedback): Just like when the pill ends up in the goldfish bowl, and the cat on top of the wardrobe, there are times in the ghostwriting book process when you have to retreat and regroup after receiving author feedback. You need to take a step back, regroup your thoughts, and prepare for your next attempt.
  8. The Restraining Tactic (Adhering to Guidelines): When it comes to restraining a cat, you need to hold it firmly without hurting it. Similarly, in the ghostwriting book process, you must adhere to the given guidelines without compromising the creativity and flow of the writing. It’s a delicate balance that requires skill and tact.
  9. The Chase (Researching): Chasing a cat around the house can be similar to the extensive research involved in the ghostwriting book process. You have to dive deep, chase down information, and confirm facts to ensure the credibility and authenticity of the book.
  10. The Medicine Swap (Redrafting): When the initial pill isn’t accepted, you might try a new approach, much like redrafting in the ghostwriting book process. You rewrite, rephrase, and sometimes restructure the entire chapter to make it more palatable for the author and the readers.
  11. The Sweet Bribe (Balancing Writing Styles): Just like offering a tasty treat to a cat after giving it a pill, a ghostwriter has to mix in their own writing flair with the author’s voice. This is the sweet bribe of the ghostwriting book process – ensuring the writing is appealing and consistent while staying true to the author’s unique style and message.
  12. The Wrangle (Managing Deadlines): Getting a cat into a towel is akin to wrangling words to meet your deadlines in the ghostwriting book process. You must be nimble, quick and efficient, often managing multiple tasks simultaneously to ensure the project stays on track.
  13. The Trick Shot (Finding Creative Solutions): Using a straw to administer a pill to a cat requires some creative problem-solving. Similarly, the ghostwriting book process often calls for inventive solutions, whether it’s overcoming writer’s block or finding an unexpected twist to enhance the narrative.
  14. The Emergency Cleanup (Revising): Cleaning up after a wayward pill is like the revision stage in the ghostwriting book process. You’re polishing the manuscript, correcting errors, and tidying up any narrative mess to ensure a clean, engaging read.
  15. The Calm After the Storm (Submitting the Draft): Once the cat has calmed and the pill is down, there’s a moment of peace. It’s much the same when submitting a completed draft in the ghostwriting book process. It’s a chance to catch your breath before the next round of revisions or the next project begins.
  16. The Repeat Performance (Multiple Projects): Just like giving a cat its regular dose of medication, ghostwriting often involves juggling multiple projects. You finish one, then start the next, each with its unique challenges and rewards.
  17. The Extra Mile (Adding Value): Sometimes, getting the pill down requires going the extra mile, like using a favorite blanket or special treat. This reflects how a ghostwriter can go above and beyond in the ghostwriting book process, whether it’s conducting in-depth research or adding thoughtful touches to enrich the manuscript.
  18. The Unseen Dance (Maintaining Anonymity): Much like a cat’s mysterious nocturnal activities, a ghostwriter’s work in the ghostwriting book process is often unseen. Despite the crucial role you play, your dance behind the scenes ensures the spotlight remains firmly on the author.
  19. The Finish Line (Final Approval): When you finally manage to get the pill down the cat’s throat, it’s a victory. Similarly, when a manuscript gets the final nod of approval in the ghostwriting book process, it’s a moment of triumph, knowing that your hard work is about to be shared with the world.
  20. The Secret Weapon (Expertise): Knowing your cat’s favorite hiding spots can be your secret weapon when it’s time to administer a pill. Likewise, your writing skills, subject matter knowledge, and ability to capture the author’s voice are your secret weapons in the ghostwriting book process.
  21. The Sigh of Relief (Final Edits): The moment the cat swallows the pill, there’s a sigh of relief. Similarly, the final edits in the ghostwriting book process provide a moment of reprieve. The manuscript has been shaped, polished, and is now ready for the world to see, offering a similar moment of calm and accomplishment.
  22. The Art of Patience (Waiting for Publication): Waiting for the pill to take effect on your cat requires patience. In the ghostwriting book process, waiting for the book to be published can feel the same. But it’s a necessary part of the process, a pause before the thrill of seeing the finished product.
  23. The Unexpected Rebound (Handling Feedback): Sometimes, the cat will spit out the pill when you least expect it. Similarly, the ghostwriting book process can bring unexpected feedback from the author or publisher. It’s an opportunity to adapt and improve, showing resilience and professionalism.
  24. The Cat and Mouse Game (Managing Client Expectations): The cat-pill saga often involves a game of cat and mouse, as you try to outwit your feline friend. In the ghostwriting book process, managing client expectations can sometimes feel the same. But with clear communication and setting realistic targets, you ensure a successful project and a satisfied author.
  25. The Purring Satisfaction (Seeing the Published Book): When the pill finally settles, the cat purrs, and you feel an overwhelming sense of satisfaction. This mirrors the moment you see the final published book in the ghostwriting book process – the culmination of your hard work, expertise, and dedication.
  26. The Silent Partner (Being Behind the Scenes): Despite the trials of administering the pill, the cat may never understand your role in its well-being. Similarly, as a ghostwriter, you are the silent partner in the ghostwriting book process. The author gets the credit, but the satisfaction of a job well done is reward enough.
  27. The Post-Pill Cuddle (Maintaining Professional Relationships): After the pill is administered, a cuddle with the cat helps restore peace. Post-project, maintaining positive relationships in the ghostwriting book process is key. It’s about building trust and ensuring future collaborations, just like those post-pill cuddles maintain harmony with your cat.
  28. The Nine Lives (Longevity in the Industry): Cats have nine lives, and ghostwriters often have the ability to reinvent themselves throughout their careers. Adapting to new genres, styles, and authors is part of the ghostwriting book process, providing longevity and continual growth in the industry.
  29. The Silent Purr (Client Satisfaction): When the cat finally settles, it purrs silently, indicating contentment. Similarly, in the ghostwriting book process, client satisfaction might not always be loudly proclaimed but seeing a happy client and a successful book project is a silent purr for any ghostwriter.
  30. The Hairball (Overcoming Challenges): Just like dealing with an occasional hairball is part of owning a cat, overcoming challenges is part of the ghostwriting book process. Each challenge is an opportunity to learn, grow, and become a better ghostwriter.
  31. The Cat Nap (Resting Between Projects): After a stressful pill administration, both you and the cat need a rest. Rest is also crucial in the ghostwriting book process. It allows you to recharge your creative batteries and return to the next project with renewed energy and fresh eyes.
  32. The Cat’s Meow (Achieving Success): When the cat’s healthy and happy, it’s the cat’s meow. And when you’ve successfully navigated the ghostwriting book process, delivering a manuscript that meets or exceeds expectations, it’s the equivalent of the ghostwriting world’s “cat’s meow.”
  33. The Cat’s Whiskers (Being Proud of Your Work): Finally getting that pill down is a feat to be proud of, just like completing a ghostwriting project. You may be invisible in the process, but the knowledge of the essential role you played in the creation of the book is something to be proud of – you’re the cat’s whiskers of the ghostwriting world.

That’s How Ghostwriting is Like Trying to Give a Cat a Pill

So, there we have it, folks. Ghostwriting, much like shoving a pill down a cat’s throat, is an epic journey filled with plot twists, hairballs, and moments of sheer panic. But, like any great story, it’s also packed with triumphs, revelations, and the unparalleled joy of seeing your hard work come to fruition, even if you can’t slap your name on the cover.

In both cases, remember preparation is key, persistence is crucial, and protective clothing is strongly recommended. Cats have claws, and writing has its own set of pitfalls. But, with the right approach, both tasks can turn out to be a purr-fect experience.

Whether you’re an aspiring ghostwriter or someone who’s just managed to give a pill to a particularly feisty feline, remember this: success lies in appreciating the journey, laughing at the scratches, and moving forward with a sense of purpose and a good dose of humor.

As you continue your foray into the wild world of ghostwriting, bear in mind these similarities, these battle stories, and these victorious moments. In the end, it’s all about putting that tricky pill of creativity into the cat’s mouth of the book. And remember, if you can get a cat to swallow a pill, you can definitely navigate the thrilling journey of ghostwriting.

In the end, remember this: both cats and clients may hiss, scratch, and hide under the sofa, but with the right approach, they’ll eventually purr in satisfaction. After all, isn’t that the ultimate goal?

Richard Lowe
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I have always wanted to be a ghost writer or have a ghost writer that can write for me. This article is very helpful.


interesting post. I have never even thought of writing a book as I think it is too much challenge for me, even if I had had the story to tell. my husband is a writer and I know who it is. Your post reflects a lot. even though I don’t think ghostwriting is healthy.


I never tried to write a book but I would love to take up writing a book as a personal challenge. I love the idea.

Nancy Andres

Amazing post and interesting metaphor. Will pin this post.