According to Robert (Bob) Bly, novice writers who are trying to break into a lucrative copywriting career need to take inventory of their previous writing experience (or else create some).
He asserts that almost everyone (who is interested in writing) has written something that can be used in a portfolio (and if they haven’t, they need to get typing) whether they have “copywriting” experience or not.
Based on this advice from Secrets of a Freelance Writer: How to Make a $100,000 or More, I immediately set to work taking personal inventory of my writing experience. I was astonished at the amount of material that could potentially be used in my portfolio.
For example (and in no particular order):
- I have been published in a local college publication page 7 and 11 (under maiden name: Sammons)
- I have been solicited to write (and have written) publicity pieces for a local orchestra
- I have written, for pay, articles in The Kern Valley Sun – in fact the (then) editor of the paper personally contacted me to write freelance articles based on an English literature class that I attended and he instructed
- On whims, I have written informational products for the purpose of selling (unfortunately, fear stopped me from following through)
- I have several articles on Squidoo
- I am published on EzineArticles.com
- I own and write several blogs (that are just waiting to earn a profit)
- I have poetry, short stories, and lyrics that have been published in a local writer’s club publication 2009 and 2010 (I love the Oxford comma)
- I have been copywriting on Etsy and eBay for years
- I have written (and had published) press releases in three newspapers: Here, here, and here
- I have written a radio ad
- I have written VBS curriculum
- I have published and marketed a book for a special client, creating all the sales literature (btw – this was a profitable venture for myself and my client). You can see the book here.
Now, lest you think I am a genius, much of this has been done without a marketing degree or the persuasiveness training (learning the art of copywriting) that I am currently pursuing.
However, I am not satisfied stopping here. I intend, Lord willing, to follow the advice in Bly’s book, Secrets of a Freelance Writer, to gain more experience for my portfolio. In the meantime, I am working on putting the above list together in the format that Bly suggests for best success.
If I can do it . . . so can you!