Has it Really Been That Long?

One of the things I’ve noticed as I get older is this: When I think back to an event that happened recently in my past, it turns out to be not so recent. Things I think happened three years ago happened six years ago.

So, when I wrote to you this past May about Bootcamp, I estimated my first Bootcamp was maybe seven or eight years ago.

Boy, was I ever off the mark. My first Bootcamp was 11 years ago. I can’t believe it. And I haven’t missed a Bootcamp since.

Why would a successful, experienced copywriter keep coming back year after year?

To be honest, I wasn’t that experienced when I attended my first Bootcamp. I’d only been writing copy “seriously” for about six years at that time. And it wasn’t until I began my relationship with AWAI that I understood the master secrets of effective, successful copywriting.

So, I felt pretty good when Katie and Denise invited me to my first Bootcamp. Excited and more than a little scared. I wasn’t sure what I could contribute or why I’d even been invited.

But I swallowed my misgivings and went anyway. Am I ever glad I did!

That first year, my role was more as support than presenter. This gave me ample time to attend sessions and gather ideas for follow-up articles Katie had asked me to write. But I’m sure Katie had ulterior motives besides giving me article fodder. She knew my going to Bootcamp would give me a remarkable boost in both skills and confidence.

I learned so much that first year. Strategies I’d heard about but wasn’t sure would fit into my “style.” They did. I learned a new way of reviewing copy (Mark Ford’s Peer Review Process) to strengthen my writing skills.

I learned that the names I’d gotten to know at AWAI were real, caring people. These are people—all of them—who were committed to my success. They still are. And they’re deeply committed to the success of all the people who’ve ever attended a Bootcamp.

And biggest of all, I learned …

Well, first, a little peek into one of my hidden personality foibles. I’ve always sought to be the best at what I do. But part of that quest has been a strong sense that I’m a fake. When I was teaching and had been chosen as a model classroom for the state department of education, I frequently questioned if I was faking it.

As a copywriter, even when all the external signs pointed to my being good at it and successful in what I was doing, the same thing. I questioned my success. Was it real? Was I real?

My first Bootcamp gave me the huge boost of confidence I needed.

You know what? I was not alone in my misgivings … or in that super boost of confidence I got. I’ve met up with many attendees from that first year at later Bootcamps. They, too, tell how much confidence (and skills) they gained from their first Bootcamp and how they renew their energy and confidence every time they return.

This renewed commitment to my career is reason number two that I keep coming back to Bootcamp.

Learning new strategies and solidifying my understanding of tried and true strategies and secrets: That is reason number three that I can’t stop coming.

So, what’s reason number one? What drives me to leave my comfortable life in rural, mountain America to travel to Delray Beach year after year?

It’s you!

I really want to meet you this year at Bootcamp. If you’re new to AWAI, copywriting, or Bootcamp, I want to strike up a new friendship with you … and answer questions you may have about your own misgivings and your own pursuit of copywriting success.

And, if we’ve met before at Bootcamp … what a great time to renew our old friendship!

When I started writing this note to you, I’d intended to make it about what you could get out of Bootcamp. But I got distracted. What was going to be encouragement for you to sign up for Bootcamp became reminiscence. Yet another sign of my getting up in years. But a good one.

Click here right now to learn how you can make this year’s FastTrack to Copywriting Success Bootcamp and Job Fair your own reminiscence … and a memory about the time you changed your life.

The Professional Writers’ Alliance

The Professional Writers’ Alliance

At last, a professional organization that caters to the needs of direct-response industry writers. Find out how membership can change the course of your career. Learn More »


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Published: June 23, 2014

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