I recently took a contract putting stilted government language into plain speech. I’m rewriting hundreds of web pages covering all kinds of public service – from pest control to parking and schools to recycling.
Public sector copywriting might not sound glamorous, but it’s fun to attack a mountain of jargon and break it down into something clear, friendly and informative to a wider readership.
My education work involves a lot of high school visits, and I meet many students who want to make a living as a writer. Although there’s a few working on screenplays, many teens imagine themselves growing up to be novelists – solitary, self-reliant figures hunched over a desk creating a masterpiece which will earn them Rowling megabucks.
Yet the joys of many writing jobs are not solitary but social. Journalism and copywriting both involve getting out, talking with people, communicating and learning.