No, it's not only megalomaniacs that Google themselves...writers do it too and if they don't, they NEED to. I Google my name at least twice a week so I can see what others see about me. Doing so helps me to learn what others will find out when they look me up and helps me control it too. I can control the keywords associated with my name and if I see something that is neutral or doesn't do much to help me, I can work on other areas of SEO to try to bury those results.
Make no mistake, when you apply for writing jobs, regardless of how many great samples you insert and how well your CV is put together the employer will probably look you up as well. I just had four people join my writing team and I Googled them all before offering them a team spot.
Some ghostwriters prefer the world of obscurity but most who ghostwrite are also trying to build a name for themselves. If you want clients to find you and to become known for your niche, you need to learn to SEOize yourself.
SEOizing For Writers
If you're writing SEO articles for clients you know a bit about keyword density, keyword placement, keyword proximity, headings, meta tags, LSI and the Long Tail.
You need to decide what to optimize your name for. Do you want to be known as a health blogger, an internet marketing blogger, a press release writer, a book reviewer? You'll need to write about the subjects you are interested in a way that will categorize you as such in the search engines.
There are many ways to do this including posting on forums, blogging, social networking and article submitting. While you may be busy writing to pay the bills, the best way to up your rates and gain exposure for yourself is to market a little each week and to check on how you're doing in the search engines.
Check Google, Yahoo, Ask and others and see what words come up related to you. Consider setting up a Google Alert for your name as well so you'll learn about new website indexings that contain your name.
I've been jousting for top spot for months with someone else in my country that has my name who is a lawyer. We seem to share the top spot regularly with a lady who also has my name (and my dot com address) but her site simply lists some baby pictures. Two years ago before I starting seoizing my brand name, I had one or two spots on page 1. Now I have more the 75% of the spots on page one and two for Google.ca. Now, I know that if people want to know more about me they'll find me.
I optimize this blog for freelance writer blog and am on the first page with some pretty popular blogs. For my own business site, I've targeted a specific segment of freelance writing.
Over time, I've also learned about what ranks well and also looks good so those are the areas I strive for. Sign up for professional profile sites like LinkedIn, ask other writers to review your website. Consider submitting something free for a byline on a popular and well respected site or blog as well. Join productive social marketing tools and always participate in a positive way. Don't forget, anything you say online that's attached to your brand name can directly reflect on your business.
SEOizing your writing name is something that can help you in many ways. Even one activity a week based on building your own brand can pay off in a big way for you.