(Free Template) Basic Ghostwriting Agreement

4 mins read

This is a pretty straightforward Ghostwriting Agreement I’ve written. It’s similar to what I’ve used for my own ghostwriters. Ghostwriters are not just for famous people writing memoirs. Small businesses often use ghostwriters for blog posts, articles and the like. This template I wrote is tailored for such small projects where the fee to be paid for each piece of content is to be negotiated as the need arises. This way the parties don’t need to sign another contract every time there is a need for fresh content. This template may also be scaled up to include books, royalties, etc. 

You can generate customizable latest version of it for free in MS Word and PDF formats here.

Key Aspects:

– Author retains all IP ownership rights over the Ghostwriter’s work product.
– Ghostwriter must maintain confidentiality.
– Ghostwriter guarantees that none of the work product is plagiarized

Effective Date:                                    , 2015.
 _____________________________________________________, (the “Author”)
 __________________________________________________, (the “Ghostwriter”)
1.      SERVICES:  Author hereby retains Ghostwriter to perform writing services by submitting articles to Author from time to time (the “Services”) on the terms and conditions set out below. Literary materials and all other products of the Services are referred to collectively in this Agreement as the “Work”.
2.      USE OF WORK:  Author may, in his sole discretion, use or not use the Work or any part thereof, and may make any changes in, deletions from or additions to the Work. There is no guarantee, either written or implied, regarding publication of the Work.
3.      PERFORMANCE STANDARD:  All of the Services shall be rendered promptly, professionally and efficiently and in accordance with the instructions of Author.   
4.      CONSIDERATION: Ghostwriter shall receive a lump sum payment for each article accepted by Author. The exact amount to be paid for each article shall be negotiated via email, phone or other means. Ghostwriter will not receive any royalties. All payments and income of whatever kind and from whatever source resulting from the Work shall belong exclusively to the Author.
(a)    Ghostwriter warrants and represents that:
(i)     None of the Work shall be plagiarized.  All of the Work shall be wholly original, except as to matters within the public domain and except as to material inserted by Ghostwriter pursuant to specific instructions provided by Author;
(ii)   None of the Work shall infringe upon or violate the rights of privacy or publicity of, or constitute defamation against, or violate any common law or any other rights of, any person, firm or corporation;
(iii)That there is no conflict of interest as in the Ghostwriter’s other contracts with the Services to be provided pursuant to this Agreement. The Ghostwriter will ensure that no such conflict arises during the term of this Agreement.
(b)   Ghostwriter undertakes and agrees to indemnify Author from all liabilities and claims arising out of any breach of Ghostwriter’s warranties and representations. This indemnification shall apply only to materials created or furnished by Ghostwriter, and shall not extend to changes or additions made therein or thereto by Author or by other writers hired by Author.
(c)    Author undertakes and agrees to indemnify Ghostwriter from all liabilities and claims arising out of any material supplied by Author for incorporation into the Work.
(d)   A party receiving notice of any claim or action subject to indemnity hereunder shall promptly notify the other party. 
6.      OWNERSHIP OF THE WORK:  Ghostwriter hereby assigns to Author the sole and exclusive ownership throughout the world and in perpetuity of all rights, title and interest of every kind and nature (including without limitation copyright and the right to create derivative works based on the Work) in the Work, and waives his or her moral rights in and to the Work. The Ghostwriter’s name will not appear as author or co-author on any article or book that incorporates any Work. The Work shall be considered “work made for hire” under the United States Copyright Act, to the greatest extent permitted by law. To the extent that the Work is not properly characterized as “work made for hire,” then Ghostwriter hereby irrevocably grants to Author all right, title, and interest in and to the Work (including but not limited to copyright herein), and any and all ideas and information embodied therein, in perpetuity and throughout the world.
7.      CONFIDENTIAL INFORMATION: Ghostwriter acknowledges and agrees that all information related to the Services and Work, including without limitation, all content, writings, work product, notes and diagrams (“Confidential Information”), is of great value to Author. Accordingly, Ghostwriter agrees not to divulge to anyone, either during or after the term of this Agreement, any Confidential Information obtained or developed by Ghostwriter while performing the Services. Upon expiration or termination of this Agreement, Ghostwriter agrees to deliver to Author all documents, papers, drawings, tabulations, reports, audio tapes, video tapes and similar documentation and recording devices which are furnished to or produced by Ghostwriter pursuant to this Agreement. Upon the expiration or termination of this Agreement, Ghostwriter agrees to make no further use of any Confidential Information. Ghostwriter may only disclose Confidential Information to third parties upon the express written consent of Author. The provisions of this Section shall survive the expiration or termination of this Agreement.
8.      RELATIONSHIP OF THE PARTIES: The parties are independent contractors and nothing in this Agreement shall form a partnership, joint venture, employer-employee or similar relationship. It is understood by the parties that this contract is not exclusive and Ghostwriter may perform similar writing services for others.
9.      TERM AND TERMINATION: This Agreement commences on the Effective Date and continues in force for two years thereafter. The Agreement may be terminated at any time by either party, provided however that the termination shall not extinguish any obligations undertaken prior to the termination.
10.  ARBITRATION: Any dispute arising from this Agreement shall be submitted to binding and confidential arbitration under the rules of the American Arbitration Association in the State of ________________, and any award issued in such arbitration may be entered and enforced as a judgment in any court of competent jurisdiction. The prevailing party in any such arbitration shall be entitled to recover attorneys’ fees and costs.
11.  ASSIGNMENT:  This Agreement is not assignable by Ghostwriter.  Author may assign this Agreement, in whole or in part, to any party provided that such party assumes and agrees in writing to keep and perform all obligations of Author hereunder. 
12.  BINDING EFFECT:  This Agreement shall enure to the benefit of and be binding on the Ghostwriter’s heirs, executors, administrators, successors and assigns, and on the Author’s successors, assigns, licensees and grantees. 

By: _____________________________

Name/Title: _______________________


By: _________________________________

Name/Title: ___________________________

Date: ________________________________

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