Writing

How to Break into Kids’ TV Writing – from Someone Who’s Done It

When I discovered my friend and fellow copywriter James Walsh had been commissioned to write an episode of a kids’ TV show for the BBC, I was ecstatic. Partly for him, but mostly for myself, because I intended to steal all his secrets and divulge them here. The operation was a success and I can now share with you the interview I lured him to Starbucks for. Before I do, […]

How to Write in a Consistent Tone of Voice When Your Mood Changes ALL THE GODDAMN TIME

You know what your voice sounds like. You write in it every day, after all. (Haha, just kidding. Did I make you feel inadequate by implying everyone else in the world writes every day?) The trouble is, this is a business you’re running here. And you need your voice to come out the same every time you write. You know, so you look consistent and professional. You don’t want to […]

On Writing: How Much Description is TOO Much?

I started reading Geek Love by Katherine Dunn last year, and god, it was dense. Now, I am not someone who perseveres through books she’s not enjoying. I will dump that shit faster than my boyfriend the day before Valentine’s Day. (Side note: I like the 10% rule. If you’re not interested by 10%, put the book down and move on. Also applies to boyfriends, probably.) But this book had […]

How to Write Quickly: My Writing Process

I finished reading Still Writing by Dani Shapiro a little while back. I learned a lot from that book and, as I was reading it, I got the impression that Dani and I are very different types of writer (and, for that matter, different types of people). Here’s something Dani had to say about writing that just did not click with me: Let’s face it: most of us are perfectionists. […]

The Difference Between Benefits and Features

Touting benefits over features is the cornerstone of good copy. So, what exactly is the difference? What the hell am I banging on about? Well, suppose you want to buy an Aston Martin. Yeah, bear with me. You don’t buy an Aston Martin because you want an Aston Martin. And you don’t buy it because it has a 6-litre engine or because it can go super ridiculously fucking fast, or […]

Where to Find Your Writing Voice

When you run a personal brand, it’s insanely important to use your voice. But where the fuck is it? How do you find it? Fortunately for you, I know where it’s hiding. It’s NOT in your emails to work colleagues, in the essays you wrote for college, nor in the formal letters you write to your bank or your gas supplier or your internet provider. No. It’s not in any […]

The Stupidly Huge Importance of Finding ‘Your Voice’

You’re a freelance writer, so the ultimate deciding factor on whether somebody decides they want to hire you or not is how you write. Duh. And the thing that makes your writing appealing to someone? It’s not your impeccable grammar or your knack for using commas correctly: those things should be a given in the eyes of your clients. Having immaculate grammar is not going to help you stand out […]

What NOT to Say On Your Freelance Writing Home Page

How many times have you seen one of the following when you first landed on a website? ‘Hello!’ ‘Welcome!’ ‘Welcome to [site name]!’ ‘Welcome to my little corner of the internet!’ And how many times did you then go on to purchase something from said website? Can’t remember? Well then, let me tell you. The answer is zero. It feels natural to write a welcome message like that on your […]