You’ve done your research for the entire day. You’ve typed out the best damn lines you’ve ever put together, new option after new option. You’ve sent the final copy to the team and/or client. And then comes the moment you’re dreading: the feedback. Oh, the ruthless feedback from everyone and their mothers.
Every day is a new battle between your Google Doc, your team’s views, and your client’s comments. Your copy gets tweaked. Somebody requests for a new tagline. A whole chunk of your paragraph is added into the mix. And suddenly everybody becomes a Copywriter.
Now don’t get us wrong. Anybody can write. Everybody should write. Writing is necessary to function. And Copywriters — no matter how skilled or experienced they are — are still subject to feedback and criticism. But there are certain (ridiculous) things we get tired of hearing:
“Hold up, Janice. I think you’re confusing typing with writing. Sure, I can type a one-liner in a minute, but writing one? No can do.
Just so you know, whipping up a ‘quick’ one-liner will take me between a few hours to infinity. I need time to churn out that one single line that would encapsulate the amazingness of a campaign or product. I need time to think of all the possible words in the dictionary, kill the tons of duds I’ve written, and bless my soul, come up with a rationale too. Suddenly it’s not just about writing a one-liner anymore, huh? Yeah, think about that.”
– Beatrice Tan, Copywriter
“I’m sorry, HWAT? Yes, what with an H for emphasis because are you kidding me right now? Easier than what exactly – a colonoscopy? As Copywriters, our jobs are often seen as “easy”, since a lot of what we do involves us staring into space, thinking. Our work is intangible. You see a witty headline or a funny caption on Instagram, but what you don’t see is what went on behind the scenes. The hours of self-doubt, self-loathing, and therapy. It all takes time.
So please, be careful with the E-word, Janice. If it looks easy, it rarely ever is.”
– Michelle Francis, Associate Creative Director
“No. Yes, I know how to write. No, they’re not the same, Janice. First off, if I had what it takes to come up with one, we wouldn’t even be having this conversation; I’d be somewhere up in my plush penthouse thinking of all the animals I’m about to adopt with my 7-figure pay. Second of all, I like my full stops. Short, snappy sentences. English. Legal documents have none of the above.
You like these things, too. That’s why your ass feverishly clicks ‘Agree’ on every iTunes Terms and Conditions update without so much as reading past the first sentence. I see you. So please, for the love of God and everything on his green earth, quit being cheap. Lawyer up. Thanks. Have yourself a very merry Christmas.”
– Audrey Lee, Copywriter
“Y’know that feeling when you’re just about to reach your peak Omg-Words-Are-Flowing state and your brain doesn’t roll back downhill the way the car did in Princess Diaries? Me neither. Because every time I’m at that point, there’s someone blocking my path to talk to me about something that could’ve been a message on Slack.
When writers get in the zone, don’t come to us to discuss anything because chances are you’ll throw off our groove (which can take hours for some of us!) and we’ll end up having to throw an old man out of the window to start again. Send us a message. We’ll reply when we’ve conquered the mountain that is fitting the 500 ‘super important and essential’ keywords into two sentences.”
– Rathika Sheila, Copywriter
And there you have it, folks. Just a few things we Copywriters are tired of hearing on the daily. But it’s okay. We’re used to these sort of things. Kind of.
That being said, maybe you can keep a few of these in mind the next time you need your Copywriters to write something for you. And since Christmas is on the way, give them a present. Or a hug. Or maybe just some peace and quiet.
P/S: No Janices were harmed in the making of this post. We don’t even know who Janice is.
When Beatrice isn’t busy hoarding panda paraphernalia, she can be found posting passive aggressive Instagram stories.