Essential skills of a great copywriter

The scope and variety of clients and its high earning potential can make copywriting an attractive career or side hustle.

It’s a well-known fact that creative writing work is ill-paid and not commensurate with the time and effort expended, but if you’re looking for a supplementary income that builds on your writing, editing and general communication skills, becoming a copywriter may be a lucrative avenue to explore. ArtsHub asks some seasoned copywriters to offer us their tips of the trade.

As well as being the author of three books, the latest of which is A Kind of Magic, Anna Spargo-Ryan has been a freelance copywriter for 10 years, with a variety of jobs that have allowed her to play with the intertwined craft of writing and research. As Spargo-Ryan says, ‘My days are a mix of all kinds of weird and wonderful things: everything from educational podcasts about melons to ad copy for electric vehicles and serious climate website content. I work with clients directly and on bigger projects with agencies.’

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Thuy On is Reviews Editor of ArtsHub and an arts journalist, critic and poet who’s written for a range of publications including The Guardian, The Saturday Paper, Sydney Review of Books, The Australian, The Age/SMH and Australian Book Review. She was the books editor of The Big issue for 8 years. Her debut, a collection of poetry called Turbulence, came out in 2020 and was released by University of Western Australia Publishing (UWAP). Her second collection, Decadence, was published in July 2022, also by UWAP. Her third book, Essence, will be published in 2025. Twitter: @thuy_on Instagram: poemsbythuy