This digital age of fast, frequent content demands writing that is engaging, sharp and tailored to its audience. Strangely, as early as 1946, during WWII, before smartphones, computers, tablets or blogs existed, one author already knew exactly how to write engaging content… His pen name was George Orwell. I’ve picked at his timeless advice like a bingeing Vegas vulture – discover why his writerly wisdom has never been more relevant than today.
Do you feel compelled to record what you do each day? Is your smartphone a remote controlling your self worth? After digesting an essay by Virginia Woolf written almost 100 years ago, I was shocked to find we face a lot of the same issues still today. We want to stand out, get noticed, curate our legacy – be anything but Anonymous. Do you even have the choice to live an unrecorded life?
How easily can you “get in the zone”? Writing productively at home or in a café is very closely linked to the sounds in the room around us. I’ve spent two years sifting through the best and worst musical focus playlists to bring you my ultimate top choices for nurturing concentration and creativity in distracting situations…
Communicating with marketing jargonese is the quickest way to lose your colleagues’ dipping attention span, or dissolve your client’s respect in an important pitch. Talking in corporate, clichéd jingles is a lazy route to making your brand (and you) seem unoriginal, unspectacular and untrustworthy (I know you're not). Let's check if you're suffering or delivering this sinful style of language – and help save your soul/business.
A dabble in spoken word creative writing and free verse prose. Basically, a loose-leaf style of writing about the goal-affirming importance of befriending failure – whatever industry or stage of life you're currently in.
There is an invisible training session we all undergo throughout our late teens and well into our twenties. It’s self-taught marketing at the most personalised, micro level. We unconsciously learn the art of self marketing to fulfil a basic human desire; to attract a crowd of followers to make us feel accepted and wanted.. . Is this skill the average person's super power?
Are those who work from home, on their own, at greater risk of developing mental health problems? Is screen-based solitude unhealthy? As living proof of a self-employed individual struggling to build that desirable, stress-free work / life balance, I take a deeper peek at the fears and threats us freelancers face on a daily basis... and how together we can conquer them.
Do you work from home as a freelance writer or creative? Do you crave human company, decent coffee and WiFi in places other than your kitchen table, wearing something other than your pyjamas? I've explored England's first UNESCO City of Literature, the fine city of Norwich, to find the best places to freelance. I am exclusively revealing them to the public, so other witty freelancers can enjoy bottomless coffee, fresh bread and find focus. You owe me guys.
Reading the common-sense savvy business book REWORK was like reading an upbeat murder mystery where everything you ever believed to be true about office work, content, marketing and startup etiquette is slaughtered before your very eyes. The mystery is how you'll take the ideas forward after the last page. I review the book's exploration of "copycatting" and why we should understand the process, rather than condemn it...
In 2016 I left my full-time marketing job and started my own writing business. I popped home to Sydney, Australia and visited Copenhagen, Italy, Croatia and Wales. I cycled to the Norfolk coast and hiked through the hills of the Peak District in England. I wrote, A LOT, mostly for other people. Here's a few important points I've learnt think we should all take with us through to the New Year...
That’s what “marketing” essentially is, right? Changing people’s minds to suit your own needs? Let’s look at this idea against the backdrop of one of the greatest marketing campaigns of modern times: turning traditional carnivores into vegans...
This post shows you how to communicate good and do other stuff real good too... basically how NOT to be a repetitive parrot.
I’ve tried to articulate here the very core of what heapswhitty offers; how I work; with invaluable advice for creative freelancers and the professionals hiring them.
Is the era of heels, shoulder pads and ass taps finally over? Overworked and underpaid? I take a look at how far women who work it have come – and how much there is still to fight for.
Wine out?! No, not really. I love wine. I wrote about it for 4 years, so the stuff’s pretty much ingrained in my psyche now.
Yet - I am starting to enjoy gin too, and there’s definitely not space for both in my evenings… The solution? Visit the country’s largest annual Gin Festival and answer two questions:
Does gin offer as many great opportunities for creativity as the world of wine? And what can us Marketers learn from the fancy, new image gin has as the classy, indie person’s drink?
Are you an artist? A writer? How about a freelancer? I like to think I am all three, minus the moments when I suffer Imposter Syndrome. But that's not the three things I talk about here. Instead, I explore Meatloaf and Neil Gaiman's idea that 'two out of three' aint all that bad.
Is that true? What are those three things? And why do Google image searches of 'meatloaf' look so terribly revolting?
Black and white drab copywriting is out. Wit is in. Creative content is now all the rave in marketing, so creative writers are flocking in for a feed. Are they up to it, or is there still a skill gap?
Meanwhile the average joes can't even keep up with the quirky content revolution.
What's a girl to do? I can think of a few things...
There's a swarm of samey-sounding marketing blogs and advice articles available every day online - but isn't it lovely when one post just slaps you across the face with an idea?
Tweeting such a post is just one reflex, but I wanted to personally share some words from Seth Godin on the factory mindset vs creating art when it comes to content marketing...
A freelance writer and a client naturally go into an agreement when working together, offering each other mutual benefits of cash for content. What happens when this agreement is broken? As a fresh freelancer, how do you cope without your own Dog the Bounty Hunter on call?
Having been there myself, I have a few tricks to share...
Do you want a career centred on the written word? This can be a varied but vague path to strut down. University creative writing students and alumni can teach you a thing or two. Turns out, so can I.
This article was originally published on the Guardian 'Students change the world' sponsored series.
Discover what the 'Pinocchio Phase' of freelancing is, and why it is so important to focus on the individual rather the income.
Plus, learn the main difference between one well-written, experienced, expensive copywriter - and me! I like to think that it's pretty obvious, but there's some things you've got to find out for yourself...