More Career Watch Blogs
- Choosing Careers ...when you have more than one interest
- Career: Radio Show Host
- Career Watch: Being a Life Coach
- Career Watch: Wedding Planner
- Deciding Your Career
- Career Watch - Life of an Art Director
- Career Watch - The Life of a Copy Writer
- Career Watch - Personal Trainer
- Career Watch - Construction Manager
- Career Watch - Stylist
July 2007 Blogs
- Real Girl - Lauren
- Ophelia, by Lisa Klein
- ECO: Your Choices Count
- Quiz - What's your money style?
- Oh No...BFFs like the same guy!
- Beauty Tips and Tricks
- What Colours Mean - Green
- Quiz - What kind of party organizer are you?
- He Dumped Me and Now I'm So Stressed!!
- Sisters - same genes, just not the same 'jeans'
- Sisters Around The World - Egypt
- Ask A Guy - asking girls to dance, what girl like about guys, ask girls a question, about guys thatgirls don't get
- Want to have a toned body? It's not about eating less...
- Be Your Own Goddess - Ganga
- Girlfriends - What you say is what you are
- Career Watch - The Life of a Copy Writer
- Shhh... Money Makes the World Go Around
- SLEEP, why is it such a struggle for some people?
- Summer Makeup for Day and Night
- Inspirational Girls and Women - Lorene Hatelt
Career Watch - The Life of a Copy Writer
CAREER WATCH, July 2007, by Jennifer Brown
Do you like to paint pictures ...with words?
That's what Coralee LeBlanc does. And her ability to paint brilliant word pictures - in both English and French - has taken her from a government job to owning her own successful copywriting business in Halifax.
What's a copywriter?
Coralee's nailed that one: "Our job is to write words that are persuasive; that will get people to buy products and services. It's advertising. We write words that SELL. Our words are EVERYWHERE. All those commercials on TV; the magazine ads, - they're all the work of copywriters." so are the coll web sites you visit, the big billboards you can't miss, and the radio commercials you may love or hate. Copywriters can also get a big office with a view to die for; and equally big bucks and trips to Awards shows around the world.
How did she get started?
After high school, she wanted to do something "creaitve", she signed up for a two-year college course in Advertising Design. She learned about layout, colour theory, and desktop publishing. "In high school, I always get excited to go to English class, especially writing projects like essays and short stories. I often thought about how I could turn writing into a career." A few courses in copywriting convinced Coralee exactly where her future lay.
She's having FUN!
"Every new client, every project is different, and every day I learn new words. Different projects mean different styles (of writing). The best part is when you actually see a project come together, right before your eyes."
It's worth the effort.
And it can be quite an effort. When she started her business, Coralee often put in as many as 120 hours a week, and found she was stressed to the max. But, over time she was able to hire some freelance help and get her life back! "Now I no longer live to work, but rather, work to live."
Being able o think creatively all the time is demanding, both mentally and physically. So you've got to be in a good shape. You know: eat right, get plent of exercise and a good night's sleep. If you're not doing it, "you can't carry on like that for long. Your mind and body just can't take it. As a writer, you have to think creatively, ALL THE TIME."
That can be tough. Advertising is a competitive field. Fortunately, the demand for talented people is always high. You may start out earning around $23,000 a year, but if you've got what it takes, the sky's the limit, literally. We're talking several hundred thousand dollars a year - after you've done your time! As for Coralee, so far she earns between $50,000 and $60,000 annually.
The best way to break in is to go to college. Look for one that specializes in Advertising. Some even have full copywriting programs, but all of them will teach you how to write for different media: print, radio, TV and the web. Copywriters often take very differen routes to reach their goal. The owner of one of the most successful agencies in Canada started out as a cab driver!
The last word.
This goes to Coralee: "You don't have to have a specific job at a specific company to become successful as a writer." Coralee's career path, outside college, included everything "from baby-sitting to waitressing, to event planning. Today, I have career that revolves around words, and every day when I wake up I'm genuinely excited about the way I earn my living."