ghost·​write ˈgōs(t)-ˌrīt How to pronounce ghostwrite (audio)
ghostwrote ˈgōs(t)-ˌrōt How to pronounce ghostwrite (audio) ; ghostwritten ˈgōs(t)-ˌri-tᵊn How to pronounce ghostwrite (audio)

intransitive verb

: to write for and in the name of another

transitive verb

: to write (a speech, a book, etc.) for another who is the presumed or credited author
ghostwriter noun

Examples of ghostwrite in a Sentence

She was hired to ghostwrite the mayor's autobiography.
Recent Examples on the Web Still, a big challenge for admissions officers—besides boredom—is being certain about whether any particular essay has been cowritten or completely ghostwritten by AI. IEEE Spectrum, 1 Sep. 2023 She’s ghostwritten numerous books for young readers, including best-selling Nancy Drew and Hardy Boys mysteries, a historical novel set in Oklahoma during the Depression, and a biography of pioneering war journalist Martha Gellhorn. Elizabeth Hand, Washington Post, 19 Aug. 2023 When someone leaked the news that Harry would be releasing a memoir and that Moehringer was ghostwriting it, the author and his family were quickly hounded by the press. Chelsey Sanchez, Harper's BAZAAR, 9 May 2023 Why can’t Usher ditch the purity bit and ghostwrite some gospel plays for Tyler Perry? Hilton Als, The New Yorker, 3 Apr. 2023 Charlie’s status quo is upended by the return of his long-estranged adolescent daughter, Ellie (Sadie Sink), whose sudden willingness to resume a relationship with him seems more prompted by his offer to pay her and to ghostwrite her school essays than the desire for a fresh connection. Patrick Brzeski, The Hollywood Reporter, 4 Sep. 2022 Federal Judge Lewis Kaplan (a Clinton appointee) in 2014 excoriated Mr. Donziger in a 485-page ruling for engaging in judicial bribery, coercion, money-laundering, witness tampering and hiring an American consulting firm to ghostwrite an expert’s report, among other legal misconduct. The Editorial Board, WSJ, 30 Apr. 2021 His scheme was to devise his own corrective biography, ostensibly with Miller as authorized author, while behind the scenes Roth would, in effect, ghostwrite it with proddings and minute supervisions of method and means. New York Times, 1 Apr. 2021 Jefferson’s concern turned to outrage when two employees of a communications company came forward with documents showing that they had been paid to ghostwrite some of the Tamiflu studies. Jeanne Lenzer, Discover Magazine, 11 Feb. 2011 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'ghostwrite.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


back-formation from ghostwriter

First Known Use

1927, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

Time Traveler
The first known use of ghostwrite was in 1927

Dictionary Entries Near ghostwrite

Cite this Entry

“Ghostwrite.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 1 Oct. 2023.

Kids Definition


ghost·​write ˈgō-ˌstrīt How to pronounce ghostwrite (audio)
ghostwrote -ˌstrōt How to pronounce ghostwrite (audio) ; ghostwritten -ˌstrit-ᵊn How to pronounce ghostwrite (audio) ; ghostwriting
: to write for and in the name of another
ghostwriter noun
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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