After Melbourne author Anh Do won a few prizes recently for his book The Happiest Refugee, there was a bit of media eyebrow-raising when it came to light that Do had had the assistance of a ghostwriter in putting together his book. The unspoken implication seemed to be that perhaps Do’s award-winning credentials should be questioned for his having had this assistance. There is something odd about writing. Perhaps because we all learnt to write at school, and because there is no special equipment required, it is common for people to feel guilty about seeking help – or even a second opinion – on their writing. It’s a guilt few would feel about getting help with a computer problem or a presentation.
But writing is not easy.