The ONLY Career Accelerant I Trust Enough to Use on My Own Family
Well after midnight, two grown adults whispered in the kitchen …
My sister and I were talking through her options.
Lyndi wanted to make a leap — a big leap. And she wanted to do it fast.
You see, for the last several years, she’s dedicated herself to her family. That’s been essential work, especially during the pandemic years when all four of her children needed her for remote schooling support. Unfortunately, that essential work didn’t pay, and she wanted to be able to contribute more directly to the family income.
I’ve suggested persuasive writing as an option for years. It’s been my only source of income for 15 years now, and she knows I’m very comfortable and happy. And yet — perhaps like many of you reading this — she’s been hesitant about committing to the writer’s life.
But there’s nothing like living through a global pandemic to make you reconsider your options and what you’re doing with your life. She was ready. It was time. We discussed it and decided: If she wanted to find success fast, there was one thing she needed to do.
So, on my advice, she signed up for AWAI’s Copywriting Success & Getting Clients Bootcamp.
Putting My Reputation on the Line … With Family, No Less!
I’ll be honest — it has been a big deal for me to bring a member of my family over to “my world” of paid writing. The stakes were high — for her, and for me. Plus, if things went sideways, I knew I’d never hear the end of it.
That’s why I wasn’t taking any chances …
I’ve learned — often the hard way — that not everything works as fast as you want.
For example, when I first kicked off my writing career in 2008, I thought I’d find fast success if I did things on my own. So, I didn’t network with other writers, I didn’t build many industry connections, and I got work one project at a time by spending hours responding to postings on online freelancer sites for a minimal wage.
I was earning a living, but I was working a lot of long, stressful hours to do it. It took me three years to realize what I was doing wrong and implement a major course correction.
Now, my sister wasn’t interested in spending three years on some trial-and-error adventure. She needed to see meaningful success inside her first 12 months. So she couldn’t follow in my exact footsteps — in fact, I don’t recommend what I did early on to anyone serious about writing success.
Instead, we started with my “a-ha!” moment — the moment when I realized how I could level up my writing career.
We Started with Bootcamp, Because Bootcamp Gets Results
When I registered for my first Bootcamp, I was extremely nervous about it. The event was a big investment for me, and although I’d read every promo letter at least 10 times, I was anxious about spending the money.
Little did I know I’d have all that money back within just six weeks of the event …
My very first day of my very first Bootcamp, I connected with a senior writer, Steve Coombes, who helped me increase my rates by 10 times. He even helped me connect with new clients who were more than happy to pay my new, higher rates.
That alone changed my life … and it was just one of the things that happened that year.
Suddenly, I had a network of writer friends. I had dozens of potential clients to follow up with — serious publishers with serious budgets. I felt plugged into the industry in ways I’d never experienced before, and I knew I was coming back for more.
This upcoming event will be my 10th Bootcamp. I come back again and again because every year there’s something new and something that helps me. There are the amazing speakers … and all the networking that happens when you put yourself in the same space as experts, marketers, and fellow aspiring writers. From lifelong friends to priceless client connections, Bootcamp continuously delivers on its promises.
Not just its promises to writers, either. About five years ago, I “switched sides” and started attending the event as a marketer looking to hire. I knew — firsthand — that there was no other place in the industry where I was going to meet as many talented, experienced, and enthusiastic writers as the group I’d connect with via Bootcamp. I’ve hired dozens of content writers and copywriters thanks to Bootcamp, and I’ll be looking for more to hire this year, too.
The Impact of Just One Bootcamp (With More on the Way)
My sister had heard all the stories I’ve just shared with you — heard them multiple times, in fact. As a result, her expectations for Bootcamp were sky-high.
I did nothing to tone that down.
I also did nothing to give her any advantages during the event. We have different last names now, and it was important for us both that she be able to connect and talk with people as herself, and succeed (or fail) on her own merits.
Maybe that seems harsh, but I wanted her victory to be her own. We’d put time and effort into growing her copy skills, and I hoped her first Bootcamp could be a “payoff” moment for her as it had been for me.
So, what happened?
Did she find writer friends, accountability partners, fresh business insights, and potential clients — all the things that Bootcamp promises?
Yes, yes, yes, and YES!
It started with a confidence boost. She told me, “As I watched — and rewatched — the keynote speakers, I could see a path for my business and myself in a much clearer way. Suddenly, the jump to doing more freelancing felt less like a leap of faith and more like a smart step forward.”
Emboldened, she got active in the session chats and networking breakouts (her first Bootcamp was virtual). This gave her friends and a writer network of her own. She made connections with writers from all over the world, and got her first client leads.
After connecting with someone in a virtual happy hour, she later ended up copyediting projects for them. “I loved knowing what their ‘voice’ really sounded like, because we had spent an hour connecting and I had a strong sense of their humor, inflection, and tone. It was so much easier to engage with the writing because I knew the person behind the words,” she says.
In doing that project, and others like it, she learned another lesson. For her, writing is fine, but editing is FUN.
She loves digging into the details of a piece of content or copy and really making it shine. She worried briefly that pivoting in this way would be a setback for her, but the reality is that copyediting skills are in demand, and Bootcamp again proved to have been a smart move.
“Because editing is my bigger passion, it’s been vital for me to stay connected with writers and content creators who can refer me to clients and send projects my way. After Bootcamp, my LinkedIn network exploded and I’m still interacting on the platform with other Bootcamp attendees,” she says.
Even better? Between Bootcamp connections and work she landed with a magazine, she’s been able to use her editing skills to quickly make a meaningful contribution to her household. Fun treats, extra outings, breathing room in the budget … she’s loving it.
The future looks bright, too. With her kids back in school and a variety of client experiences under her belt, she’s looking forward to growing her business — and coming back to Bootcamp (in-person this time), of course!
Start Your Own Bootcamp Story …
Our writers’ story started with two sisters trying to figure things out. And we had to make choices …
If you’re working on your own writer’s life, you’re facing the same choices.
You can choose to do things on your own and find success at your own speed. It’s not easy but it can be done with trial-and-error and extra effort.
Or, you can apply some accelerant …
That’s the choice we made — and there’s only ONE accelerant I trusted to get the job done.
It’s been Bootcamp for us, all the way. And I sincerely hope to see you taking part in it, too. To discover more about this year’s IN-PERSON Bootcamp, go here.
And to learn more about how copyediting could be YOUR best path to the writer’s life, go here.
How to Use Copyediting for Career Advancement and Side Profit: Simple Techniques to Elevate Your Writing Value and Your Income
Be the “secret weapon” behind great copywriters as a skilled copy editor. You can make a very good living editing other writers’ copy — and transforming “good” copy into GREAT copy.
Learn More »