I have a new website

Hi everyone! This is just to let you know that this is the last post I will publish on this blog, because I have a new website and blog.

If you’re interested in my copywriting services, check out my new professional freelance copywriter website. It’s a bit sleeker than this one, and it’s under my new name, Rachel Ingram (I recently got married). It includes a blog where I’ll be writing about copywriting and keeping you up-to-date with professional goings-on, so do head on over to http://www.rachel-ingram.co.uk and take a look.

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My copywriting services aren’t changing – I just have a shiny new website that shows off my experience and credentials more effectively. I will keep this website online so that people searching for my maiden name will still find me, but if you’d like to contact me, please do so via the contact form on my new site.

If you want to find out what I’ve been up to outside work, check out my personal blog Cosy Life, which I update regularly with lots of photos and details of our adventures.

As always, you can also follow me on Twitter and Instagram for my latest postings. Hope to see you at my new website very soon!

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A little update

It’s been a long time since I’ve updated this blog, mostly because I’ve been so busy with copywriting work (a good thing, undoubtedly!), but also because I’ve been writing about non-work stuff over at Cosy Life.

It’s been a great year so far and lots has happened since my last update – the most exciting thing being that I’ve finally got my Private Pilot’s Licence!

Work-wise, I continue to be very happy being self-employed, and am daily grateful for having taken that big leap into the unknown. I realised yesterday that even though I work more days now than I did when I had a full-time job, I *never* look at the clock anymore. In full-time employment I used to watch the clock constantly, wishing it would hurry up and be the end of the day – wishing half my life away. I never do this now, and the days fly by in an enjoyable whir of writing all kinds of copy.

These are just a few of the things I’ve written about in the last few months:

  • International Women’s Day, for a branch of the United Nations
  • Insurance, for a major household name in insurance
  • Women in the workplace – general issues, gender pay gap, leadership etc
  • Beautiful hand-crafted wooden furniture
  • Cycling, in particular high-performance racing bikes
  • Catering hire equipment
  • Software for companies who send engineers out to jobs in the field
  • Travel – Mongolia, Japanese food, Bhutan, Asian monarchs and lots more
  • Coffee
  • Digital marketing
  • A freelance job/networking site
  • Oil tanker loading equipment
  • Non-surgical cosmetic treatments
  • Cheese

I’ve written blog posts, press releases, website copy, brochures, slogans – you name it really. I’ve even proofread a 267 page self-help book. That’s what I love about my job – it’s just so varied, and I never know what’s going to come up from one week to the next.

On a personal note, I turned 29 a week or so ago, and I’m marking the final year of my 20s by taking on this 30 Things To Do Before I’m 30 challenge. You can follow my progress on the Cosy Life blog.

As part of this challenge I’m also going to be slightly rebranding my copywriting business. In practice this simply means I’ll be getting a smart new website, which I’m currently in the process of building. I plan to launch it in the autumn, which should give me plenty of time to get it finished and looking slick! I’ll write another update on this blog when the new site is launched, and then this site won’t be updated again, but will remain online as an archive.

I’m sure I’ll write more on here before then though!

A year of being self-employed

The autumn is here – my favourite time of year. As you can tell from the length of time it’s been since I last updated, things have become VERY busy. Over the summer I’ve been writing about 16,000 words a week, and I’ve had so much work that I’ve had to turn down quite a lot of incoming requests for copy, which I don’t like doing, but I just haven’t had time. Luckily things have quietened down a bit now, so I’m taking on new work for the first time in a while. If you have anything you’d like me to write for you, do let me know!

I’m still loving being self-employed, and I’m daily grateful for not having to commute, or sit for hours in pointless meetings. I devote one morning a week to volunteering for Guide Dogs (for the Blind), where I look after lots of gorgeous puppies. I’ve neglected my PPL over the summer as I’ve been so busy, but I need to get it finished off over the winter else the ground exams I’ve done will become invalid.

Air Experiences is still going strong, though Lee’s been doing most of the running of it while I’ve been so busy with copywriting. We’ll be doing some Christmas gift fairs again this year, which will be a chance for me to get more involved with the business again. I’ll also be doing more blogging for the company in the coming months.

On a personal note, some happy news: Lee and I got engaged last month! So that’s very exciting and we are starting to plan our wedding now! We’ve just got back from ten amazing days in Florida, which you can read about (along with everything else I’ve been up to) on my other blog.

Once again, let me know if you’d like any copy – I’m taking on new clients and projects at the moment, so I’d be delighted to give you a quote or discuss your requirements.

Half way through the year

June has been and gone, and it was another insanely busy month for me, with the result that I’ve made virtually no progress on my PPL and have had very few days off. The workload looked like this:

  • 29 educational articles (2,000 words each – 58,000 words in total!!)
  • A business profile/proposal doc for a client
  • A sales email promoting a new resource website for another client
  • Another whitepaper for the same client
  • Some social media updates for the same client
  • Two blog posts for Air Experiences
  • A three-hour meeting writing blog posts and promotional letters for another client
  • A blog post on online accessibility for another client
  • Six more events listings for the prestigious/luxury client

On top of that:

  • Our parents met for the first time when we all had lunch together in Cirencester; they got on really well!
  • We’ve flown to the Isle of Wight for the day
  • We’ve flown to Dover for the day
  • We visited Packwood House
  • We’ve started crewing for the hot air balloon again
  • And I’m still volunteering for Guide Dogs every Thursday morning, walking dogs/puppies

I’m coping ok with this much bigger workload, though I sometimes wish I could have more time off. It gets pretty intense when I’m struggling to get everything written and then I have edits to make on top of that, and new projects to price up, invoices to send/chase, accounts to keep (theoretically – still behind on that!), and a life to live. Hence why I’m not updating this blog so often now!

As ever, you can keep up to date with my non-work activities over at www.cosylife.co.uk.

I’m still here

Hi all,

Just to let you know that I am still here. Hopefully you’re not missing Diary of a Freelancer too much. ;-)

May has been busy on an unprecedented scale. I must have written and edited many tens of thousands of words, including:

  • Tonnes more long education articles
  • Nearly a hundred meta descriptions and introductory texts for a software client
  • A blog post for a lovely lady who’s about to publish a craft book
  • Three digital marketing whitepapers
  • Two case studies for an industrial client
  • Four blog posts about Thailand and Burma for a new travel client
  • Some copy for my wedding photographer client
  • Two pages for a solicitor via a digital marketing agency client
  • An Italian pizza delivery menu and slogans
  • Copy for eight pages of a sign-maker/graphic design website

Phew! No wonder I am suffering from repetitive strain injury and general exhaustion. On top of all that, I’ve somehow also found time to:

    • Pass three more PPL exams (communications, meteorology, aircraft general knowledge)
    • Pass my aircraft radio practical exam (with flying colours!) to obtain my aircraft radio licence
    • Fly solo again for the first time since September
    • Fly in a very fancy motorglider, including in an aerotow (pulling a glider)
    • See Jimmy Carr
    • Fly to another airfield for Sunday lunch
    • Meet up with various friends and family in Oxford
    • Buy a MacBook Air
    • Buy a coffee machine (and learn how to use it!)

I’ve written a few blog posts on my other blog about non-work activities – check out http://www.cosylife.co.uk. I’ve only had three days off this month, and I’m hoping that June will be a little more forgiving.

Travel companies: get your exclusive 20% copywriting discount!

Are you a travel company? Are you looking for someone who’ll write engaging travel-related content that keeps people coming back to your website and boosts your Google rankings?

I can help – and better still, I can give you an exclusive 20% discount!

Here’s a little overview of my travel sector experience…

Whatever the destination, and whatever the angle, I can promise you well-researched, interesting copy that people want to read and share. What’s more, with my SEO background, I know what works when it comes to content that boosts your Google rankings.

Travel writing is my biggest writing passion and I’m keen to work with more travel companies, so if you’d like me to write for you, get in touch now and claim your exclusive 20% discount off your first piece of content to try my services for yourself.

Smallprint: offer valid for your first piece of content from me. Offer expires 31/3/14.

On Losing My Voice

I was having a discussion with my dad the other day about the enjoyable intellectual challenges of being a copywriter, and one of the things that came up was the fact that I have to write in many different voices. As a copywriter, it’s essential that you’re able to adapt your writing style to suit the client you’re writing for. Luckily this is something I’ve always been very good at and enjoyed doing, but I’ve come to realise that in getting so used to doing this, and in spending so much time writing as other people or companies, I have started to lose a bit of my own voice.

In the last few months since going freelance, I’ve taken on the persona of an educational institution, a corporate client selling a very niche kind of software, two different American crime authors, a high-end manufacturer of luxury domestic appliances, a commercial property manager, an HR consultant, a supplier of industrial-scale electric generators, an HR agency and a web design agency. And somewhere along the way, my own voice lost its edge.

Not long ago I was looking at some blog posts and diary entries I wrote when I was 18, and I realised with a sinking feeling that they were a lot wittier and more interesting and imaginative than anything I write as myself now. I now feel that, writing as myself, I would struggle to make someone smile, let alone laugh. I read what I’ve written for my clients and am generally very happy with it. But I read my own blog posts and I’m deeply unsatisfied with them. The grammar and syntax is okay, but there’s little of the personality that used to characterise my writing.

Over the past few months I’ve started blogging a lot more on my own blogs so that I am still doing some writing in my own voice, but I feel my own writing has become boring and lacking in personality since becoming so used to writing in corporate styles. I hate reading my own posts and feel deeply inadequate when I compare my own blogs to those of others.

I don’t know why I thought writing this post was a good idea; I just wanted to get it off my chest I guess. I don’t know how to tackle this problem and the lack of time on my hands doesn’t help.

Fellow copywriters: have you experienced this? If so, how do you combat it? If you have any suggestions, please help!