Whenever there was some free time at the end of the school day Mrs Hollins, our widely adored teacher, let class 1H do as we pleased. All the other kids got busy with their wax crayons creating colourful art but I wrote stories, poems and songs.
I’ve always loved reading, words and threading them together to create stories.
I’ve been writing a diary since I was five and as I grew older I’d spend hours poring over the dictionary or thesaurus to expand my vocabulary. Later I compiled a book of quotes which is still tucked away in my bedroom cupboard.
Somehow I always knew I wanted to be a writer so I feel blessed that my childhood dream came true.
What type of copywriting do you do?
As a child I imagined I’d write storybooks but my writing career has taken another turn. Although I’ve written and self-published a book about blogging and have two other non-fiction books in progress, my true focus today is web copywriting, a form of writing that didn’t exist when I was a child.
Since creating my travel blog after moving to the Sunshine Coast five years ago I also do a lot of travel writing, both for tourism marketing clients and as a freelance travel writer. My travel writing has been published in print in Escape (Sydney Sunday telegraph), Senior Traveller and Australian Traveller which is fun but web copywriting and writing blog posts is fun too.
I love the variety that comes from being a copywriter because I get to practice writing in different styles and writing different types of documents.
Although web copywriting and SEO copywriting make up most of my writing work I also write job application letters, speeches, white papers, brochures and business reports. That keeps things interesting.
What topics do you write about as a copywriter?
Although travel is a special interest and many clients contact me because of my focus on tourism marketing, as a professional copywriter I can and do write about anything.
I’ve write about a huge range of topics. Being a copywriter is the perfect excuse for me to learn new things, do some research and ask lots of questions all of which I love.
So far this year in the course of my copywriting I’ve learnt and written about Bali, AstroTurf, cosmetic surgery, sanitary bins and beauty products made from camel milk. Yes, really. Not a bad spread in the first four months of the year.
Travel writing is fun but I enjoy having a mix of business writing, SEO copywriting and traditional copywriting too.
How does the copywriting process work?
The first part of my job as a copywriter is talking with (or emailing) my client to find out who the copywriting needs to appeal to, what makes their business unique and how best to write about it.
I love people and business so working with clients is one of the most rewarding parts of my job. I take reams of notes to refer to when I start writing.
Next comes the harder part-writing something! Procrastination is the copywriter’s worst enemy but sitting down and filling a blank page with fresh, interesting, compelling words is easy once I get started. Deadlines work wonders too.
My least favourite part of being a copywriter is editing and checking my own work. It’s hard to edit and check your own writing, especially because there’s no perfect solution. I love editing and improving other people’s writing but I could tweak, change and improve my copywriting for days with no deadline to keep me in check.
Fortunately, I always have a deadline and I usually have a queue of copywriting jobs to attend to which means the editing gets done on time.
Once I’ve written a few pages of copy I’ll send it through to my client for checking and feedback.
Most clients already know and like my copywriting style from reading my website or blog but if they have suggested changes I’ll keep working on the copy until we’re all happy with it.
Finally the completed copywriting will be used, usually to create or update a website or add to a blog. It’s always a thrill to see my words being used, whether that’s online on a business website or in a glossy magazine.
I’m not the novel writer I imagined I’d be as a child but I still get to write, play with words and tell stories every day and I still love writing.
I’ve found from experience that writing fiction isn’t where my talent lies. My writing sweet spot is writing shorter pieces like brochures, web copy and blog posts which I’ve published over 500 of in the last five years.