How You Can Use Copywriting To Level Up Your Writing

If you love challenging yourself to write about anything, this is for you.

Zulie Rane


I have always wanted to be a paid author, even since I was six and read my first work of fiction (The Magic Treehouse). But there was one catch: I thought I was bad at writing, and I didn’t know how to get better.

It was intimidating to write fiction, but I’d never been interested in non-fiction. So I quietly shelved my dreams of seeing my name on a book someday, and dreamed smaller, less ambitious dreams.

Then someone introduced me to copywriting.

What is copywriting?

Copywriting means someone provides you with a brief — maybe a blog post, an ad, a product description — and you write it for them. You try to make it engaging, descriptive, filled with keywords so it will rank well on Google.

Photo by Kaitlyn Baker on Unsplash

But to me, copywriting was a way to gain validation that I was good at writing. It was my first paid writing gig, before I’d ever blogged or heard about Medium.

By spending maybe ten minutes a week writing a little 200–500 word blurb about a product, service, or experience, I funded most my pub trips.

I got paid around 1.5 pennies per word, I could write about 100 words per minute, and I usually researched the topic for about five minutes beforehand. If you do the math, this works out to around £7.50 every ten minutes, or £45/hour.

I was a Masters student at the time, so the ability to work at a flexible rate for that kind of pay was tremendous for me. It wasn’t that much but it meant I could treat myself a bit more often than I would otherwise.

And it taught me how to write to a deadline, how to write about anything (including, but not limited to, descriptions of toilets) and how to write well and quickly.

Was I qualified?

No. I was doing a Masters in bird conservation, so I had no history of writing copy, nor did I have any qualifications for writing. All I…