Living the Writer's Life: Laurent Duperval
AWAI Scholarship Winner Makes the Most of His New Writer’s Life

Writer Laurent Duperval and his family
Family is Laurent’s “why”!

Laurent Duperval has always loved writing, so when he received a piece of mail asking if he could write “a simple letter,” he was intrigued. The pandemic provided the push he needed to start building his own writer’s life as a content writer. Now he gets up each morning, rides his bike, and works the rest of the day on his own terms. You’ll love this special interview hosted by Barefoot Writer’s Robert Rice …

What was it that pushed you toward becoming a copywriter?

Writing has always been part of my life. I have journals that go back about 20 years. It’s a way for me to talk about things that I won’t necessarily discuss with other people.

The other part of it is I’m sort of a capitalist. The whole starving writer thing … not really for me. I wanted writing, but I had to make sure that I was going to be able to make a living out of it. So I discovered copywriting.

When did you really get serious about starting your copywriting career?

My first real push toward that was the start of the pandemic. My last job was as an IT project manager. Although I was good at it, it did not fulfill me. And then came March 2020. They kicked all the contractors out of the company where I was providing services. I registered for AWAI in June 2020.

It was around that period that I’d found the email that said, “Can you write a letter like this one?” And it wasn’t an easy start, because during the summer of 2020, my wife of almost 24 years got severely sick … She passed away.

I let maybe a month or two pass. Then I said, Okay, now you need to put a plan in place and start using the plan. And eventually everything started getting into gear.

I am deeply sorry for your loss. How did you move forward from there to find your first clients, and how did AWAI’s Circle of Success influence your pathway?

A lot of the contracts I had were through people I had either worked with or were referred to me by people I’ve worked with.

Circle of Success is my go-to whenever I have questions. If you need to know something now, it gives you access to the entire AWAI library, which covers newsletters, blogs, emails, and anything that involves writing.

Having a [COS] mentor who has already worked with clients … it’s easier to get my point across and get feedback that is very specific to my situation.

Recently you won an AWAI scholarship to put toward your studies. What are you excited to do with your scholarship?

The scholarship serves two things. I used part of the scholarship to pay for COS, because it is a massive investment.

I also used part of it to take a course that Russ [Henneberry] started … the Content Marketing Mastery course, which I can say is one of the best courses that I have taken.

He focuses a lot on strategy. I found out while I was listening to him and going through the course that I think I really like the strategic part. A lot of what I learned with Russ will be immediately applicable.

Writer Laurent Duperval
Laurent claims to be
“a very serious person”
who “never kids around.”

What does the writer’s life mean to you?

It’s a great world. They talk a lot about the writer’s life. I’m beginning to see what it means.

One of the things I hated with a corporate job was waking up at 6 a.m. to go take the train or go through traffic and come back.

Now it’s my schedule. I’m the one who decides what works best for me, instead of having it imposed upon me.

If I’m a brand-new writer, what is the first step you would suggest?

The first step I would suggest is to invest in yourself. You need to know where you have a gap to fill in order to be able to provide benefits to your client. We’re talking about copywriting here.

So if you’ve never taken a copywriting course before, or you’ve never taken a blogging course before and this is what you want to do, take one. It’s not money that is spent, it’s money that is invested. And over time you will reap the benefits.

You have to believe in yourself. You have to want it. And you have to be willing to invest the time and sometimes the money to better yourself.

Laurent's Living The Writer's Life story was originally published in Barefoot Writer. To learn more about how you can start living your dream writer's life too, click here.

What help do you need to move forward with your version of the writer’s life? Let us know in the comments below so we can help guide you in the right direction.

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Published: August 28, 2021

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