How Starting Your Writing Career Can Be Like Having Your First Child


Kelli Clevenger

Did you know everything about parenting before you had your first child?

Probably not. But you had him or her (or them!), anyway.

Your desire for having children outweighed your fear.

Now, let’s see how that might compare to your writing career.

You want to get your writing career started. But you're stalled.

Why?

Most likely it’s because you’re afraid. So far, fear outweighs desire.

It's time to change your mindset. It’s time to think like you did when you had your first child.

Let me explain …

When having your child … or giving birth to a new career … preparation comes first.

How do you prepare for your first baby?

  • Get physically ready.
  • Read so many books your brain is on “new-baby overload.”
  • Read every article ever written on every site you can find.
  • See your doctor, toting your list of 1,000 questions.
  • Talk to all your new-mom friends.

You ask yourself, “How will I EVER be ready for that bundle of joy?”

(Answer: Never. There's too much to learn!)

So, how do you prepare to be a copywriter?

  • Study every copywriting program you can.
  • Read tons of books about copywriting.
  • Read every copywriting article on every website.
  • Take as many writing courses as you can.
  • Make a long list of questions and ask them in every Facebook writing group you can get into.

You've become a writer-information Ninja, much like if you were having your first baby.

You ask yourself, “How will I ever learn everything about writing, so I can start my business?”

(Answer: You won't. There's too much to learn!)

The problem every budding copywriter faces

Your intentions are good. But your brain's overloaded.

You've become a member of the biggest writing club out there: The group afraid of never knowing enough.

Yes, preparation's good. But trying to learn everything at once can be bad.

It’ll stop you from moving forward. And without moving forward, you'll never get your first clients.

The Solution that clears the problem away

Think about that first baby.

You were thrilled. But you didn't know everything about parenthood.

You jumped in anyway.

Same way with your writing business.

You won't know how to handle your first client until you actually have one.

Think about it like this:

Each client will be different. What each one needs will be different, too (just like babies).

Some clients will be easy to work with. Some won't. (Some babies sleep through the night. Others don't.)

You can't fully prepare for either.

YOU CAN TRY. But, remember: you'll never learn everything.

What do you do?

Jump in. Make mistakes. Learn from them.

It's called EXPERIENCE.

It's what makes a good parent. And it's the successful foundation of a thriving freelance career.

Giving birth to your successful writer's life

You planned for your first baby as best you could.

The same way you've learned copywriting skills to the best of your ability.

You'll never learn all there is to know about copywriting. But you need to move forward at some point anyway. Follow these three simple steps:

  1. Learn foundational secrets from AWAI.
  2. Go after your first client.
  3. Learn as you go.

You'll learn how to write each project as it comes.

And when you need help, you have AWAI's resources.

So, remember what it's like to have your first child. And start your business today. You won't regret it. And you'll be successful sooner.

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: May 17, 2017

8 Responses to “How Starting Your Writing Career Can Be Like Having Your First Child”

  1. Great analogy! No matter how much we try to prepare for every eventual situation, it's all just theoretical until preparation meets reality. AWAI's exceptional resources and professional writing mentors have given me a solid foundation and the confidence for copywriting success. This article is one more nudge for me to step out and start living the writer's life. My recent steps: COS and registering for Bootcamp. Thank you!

    Laurie CampbellMay 17, 2017 at 2:17 pm

  2. I know there is never a perfect letter. I expect that reviewing all AWAI's lengthy list of training materials will greatly guide and improve my writing skills.

    As soon as I learn AWAI's foundational secrets, I believe I will be ready to find my first client.

    Reading has always been a "love" I have so continually reviewing previous copywriting work will be an exciting learning experience.

    Barbara - Writing For CashMay 17, 2017 at 2:33 pm

  3. Excellent advice, and for me, personally, incredibly timely. As a newbie, I have been fighting the nagging fear that I don't yet have the knowledge base to move forward.

    JTDMay 17, 2017 at 2:47 pm

  4. 50 years ago (in two weeks), my wife and I got home with our first-born. As I sat on the sofa and looked at this tiny girl, I thought, "What have I started?"

    This week our 8th great-grandchild puts our family at 40 people. Three granddaughters marrying this year puts us at 43 by Christmas. Two months from now is our 51st anniversary and my wife still likes me for some reason. :-)

    We know a lot more now than then. Doing it over and over gets it done. I've been a senior writer for over 37 years, and engineer for over 45. Don't quit. Keep going.

    Guest (Clarke Echols)May 17, 2017 at 3:32 pm

  5. This was really helpful because I've definitely been guilty of the I-need-to-take-just-one-more-course-before-I-really-start syndrome. I would love to really get going, but I haven't been able to get things going. The idea of my first real client kinda freaks me out but I know I won't get better until I actually get one.

    Jessica TerryMay 18, 2017 at 10:46 pm

  6. Hi Will and Kelli,moving forward is all I'm doing with the help of the AWAI members.Having a child ,is a Joy of it's own,life is Beautiful.

    Guest (Darrick)May 19, 2017 at 1:02 am

  7. I signed an paid the 40 and so much hs happened I lost my job an I don't know if Ican pay any more money to do this but I want to do this its been a dream of mine Ive been writing since I was young an I attendented the webiener this weekend an I lost the website an I was hoping you could send it to me again and anything you could help me with im ready to start so I say again anything you can help me with would be helpful an thank you in advance may god bless you an yours..have a blessed day love

    Guest (natasha)May 19, 2017 at 2:09 pm


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