Why did you choose a career in copywriting and how did you get into it?
I love it so much I chose it twice! I started freelance copy and content writing over a decade ago, but I had no idea how to run a business.
After burning out working in content mills I ended up going in-house and working in comms for many years, writing and editing internal magazines, developing campaigns, project managing (spreadsheets! Argh!) and wrangling with senior managers.
I worked with some lovely people but it didn’t fit so well with family life and once I got to manager level I started to miss doing the actual writing. So I started up my copywriting business again two years ago and haven’t looked back.
What work are you most proud of?
I’ve done a few sales pages recently for a couple of small business owners who found me online and it’s been a joy from start to finish.
Writing for people who get you, and who you get, is like a drink of cool water. You can get straight to the heart of their brand and develop messaging that connects really powerfully for their audience.
I’m proud of that work and proud that I have built a business that draws those people to me.
Also, I love writing sales pages.
What piece of copy do you really wish you’d written?
The highly regarded “if you hit this sign, you will hit that bridge” road sign in Athens, Georgia. Every time I see it a do a little sigh of admiration. It’s the perfect example of effective communication being about so much more than just words.
What do you do if you hit a bit of writer’s block?
I’m terrible at leaving my desk, ever, for anything, even when it’s not going well.
So I tend to put on a podcast or do some reading. New ideas and perspectives
are great for unsticking the mind.
I long to be the kind of person who springs up from their desk and does half an
hour of yoga or goes for a stroll through the hills. One day.
What are your favourite and least and favourite writing-related tasks?
I enjoy research, but have a tendency to lose myself down rabbit holes and end up with tons, then have a right ‘mare trying to whittle it down.
My favourite part of writing is when I’m really in flow and the words are pouring out. Or that point where you’ve got a draft you’re really happy with and you’re fine-tuning it so it sings. I do like a tinker.
Any copywriting pet hates?
That bro marketing thing where a writer tries to get your attention by being really offensive. It’s witless and desperate.
What’s the best piece of career advice you’ve been given?
To ask for help. Connecting with other freelancers changed everything for me, especially in the beginning. A rising tide lifts all copy-boats.
What advice would you give to people starting out on a copywriting career?
Take yourself seriously, ask for help (see above), and never stop learning.
Why do you find ProCopywriters membership useful?
It’s always good to feel part of something bigger.