To cure frustration, read two blogs and call me in the morning.

For the better part of this semester I had been extremely frustrated. Frustrated with myself for not having as much work done as I would have liked. Frustrated with my University for not providing me with any sort of direction on what I should be doing to actually get a job or internship. Frustrated with the seniors I had encountered for their seeming lack of interest in what they were studying (reminder to make a short post on ‘working’ portfolios’).

In late February that all changed.

I became intensely introspective. What I was frustrated with was not my lack of work, lack of guidance and lack of inspiring people around me; I was frustrated with myself for not doing anything about it. So I began reading.

Reading blogs, poring over agency websites, finishing an entire textbook about advertising in a little over a week. This led me to meeting with professionals around the city and refining my book from “The Big Green Monster” to something representative of me. The last two-month period was the most eye opening experience I have had in my entire life.

Over the coming days I will be posting about the websites and blogs that helped get me out of my rut. I can only wish that they are as beneficial to you as they were to me.


If you use your brain, read this Post.

I have a soft spot for ads with great copy. It’s one of my many faults. The first time I laid eyes on this Myoplex ad in ESPN magazine I thought I was in love. This campaign is the glorification of your body. Best of all the campaign is simple and doesn’t try promise anything extravagant. While Muscle Milk (one of Myoplex’s main competitors) promises huge muscles and abundant strength, Myoplex approaches it with a softer sell. In my mind the second approach is much better. Like everyone else I tend to use my muscles on a daily basis, but I’m not sure if I want to get “huge”. The Myoplex campaign points this out and still has a little bit of fun with the message. Among my favorite lines are ‘Cutting the Crap’ and ‘Making Some Ca$h Money.” My only critique is that the copy seems to get lazy with the Ect. Ect. Ect. at the end. I get what they were trying to say but ending on something along the lines of Moving mountains is far more compelling to me than a copywriter saying, “hey I got bored, you fill in the times you use your muscles. “


How did you know you were going to be a _____?

I should have known earlier on that I was destined to be a copywriter. While I have always enjoyed writing papers my favorite part was always writing the title. After that came the grabber sentence, then the final sentence of the paper.

If I could have done it, most of my papers would have been three lines long. Just a title, grabber, final sentence.




Strange how these connections seem to just make sense down the line.  Check back later and I’m going to post some of my favorite three sentence papers from the archives.


Paper vs. 'Puter

Where do you start to concept? For me it is on paper.

Not necessarily a moleskine or even a notebook, but seldom do my ideas start while i’m sitting in front of a blank screen. Paper and a pen are my tools of choice.

Computers just don’t give enough freedom. There’s no doodling, no writing at every angle, no fun. Computers are great for taking an idea from concept to execution but I find the constraints of a notepad or word document to work against creativity.

Do I have entire pages of ideas scratched out, with stupid scribbled beside them? Sure, but I also have some of my best ideas circled time and time again, a reminder to go with my gut.

If you currently only use a computer to generate ideas give paper a try, you might like it.



For anyone who has not been there yet 750 words is a great site. Think of it as fiber for your writing, it keeps you regular. The premise of the site is very simple.

You write, 750 words a day. Sounds easy right? Well it’s not too hard but I found myself actually having to think to write that much. That is a very good thing. I have been using the site a few days and I can already feel that writing everything (even here) has become easier. The words just sort of flow.

Additionally, the writing is for your eyes only. Accessible only by you. No sharing, just thoughts or stories or any brain droppings you develop. And the site analyzes your writing to determine your mood who and when you are concerned about and what your general outlook on life is day to day. It’s pretty cool and I urge you to heck it out.

I have a feeling it is going to get huge in the next few months as some big names in the industry are starting to talk about it. Just get writing, it’s nice sometimes.



I love the work that La Blogo Theque produces. This Bon Iver track is one of my favorite video’s they have ever posted. The harmonies are even more haunting here than in the original song and I feel like I am right there with the artist.

Something about listening to the right track always seems to make words flow from my pen. Whenever I can’t come up with an idea I always find myself going back to music that calms me down. It cleanses my mind - almost in the same vein as smelling coffee beans after testing too many colognes. Does everyone have a song like this?


Working through the wall.

There are days, maybe weeks where you’ll feel stuck. It happens to everyone. For me its been happening alot over the past week or so. You think- and think- until you have come to the conclusion that you just don’t have what it takes. Inspiration:

You don’t suck.

As long as you keep trying. Most of the time hitting a wall means your idea, or approach, simply isn’t that good. Switch up you tactics, write in another voice, try the most rediculous concept you can think of- then you might get something.

The thing is “the wall” isn’t bad itself, whats bad is giving up and letting writer’s/designer’s/creative block get the best of you. You never know an idea you got walled on initially could be one of the best things you produce.


edit: has a great multi-story section on this topic. Peep it here.

Note: This post is as much inspiration for myself as it is for other people.

Starting Over.

I have decided to change the focus of CopyCopyWriter. I know people must be devastated but I do not feel blogging just about “cool stuff” or “bad stuff” is really needed by itself. When something catches my eye I will throw it up on the blog but that will no longer be the focus of the blog.

I want to write about being an advertising student. What I knew, what I have come to know and what I really wish I had known. I’m on the front lines of dealing with the question of, “how do I get there.” Hopefully this new focus will help people understand my process and what has worked for me, and to find their own way.

I hope people enjoy the new direction and continue reading or even better, telling someone they know needs advice about this blog.


Here We Go!

I loved the Bud Light drinkability tag that was unveiled last. I just though Anheuser Busch got it right. I was a little sad to see it go with this year’s Super Bowl and was less than impressed with “Here We Go.” After their previous campaign it seemed a little generic. However, seeing those ads for the first time I failed to see the brilliance behind the tag.

Enter MMA. One of my many hobbies is watching MMA fights. Regardless of your opinion on the fights themselves they are a spectacle of marketing. The UFC has managed to grow itself even in a down year and their self promotion is pretty much top-notch. I was watching the free fights on saturday when I heard these fights are brought to you by Bud Light; Bud Light “here we go”. Followed shortly by the referee saying “Here we go” to the fighters; then a bellowing “AND HERE WE GO!” from the announcer.

This was my ah-ha moment. Clearly this couldn’t be some great coincidence. After all, Bud-light is largest sponsor of the UFC and WEC. This had to be a brilliantly executed marketing strategy. The phrase “here we go” is uttered so often during MMA fights that in a 30 second peroid AB was getting its brand double or triple exposure. I still think the tag is a tad generic but I think the execution is stellar.


I want to be you.

Yesterday in class we were practicing interview techniques. Specifically we were asked to give our ‘elevator pitch’ in response to the question, “So, tell me about yourself.”

The person I was paired up game me the answer, “I’m Kyle*, and I want to be you.” I was so flattered, this dude wanted to be me! Needless to say I thought it was a great answer. Then I started to think more on his response and it started to trouble me. I came to the following conclusion:

I don’t think anyone should want to be you.

There is a definite problem about defining oneself through another person. All Kyle was saying was that he wanted to follow in the footsteps of other successful people. Well that might be all well and good in other fields, but advertising is not just another profession. I have already written about complacency (read it here) and I do not like it. There is a reason we are called creatives and if you are willing to use the trail someone has already paved for you maybe it’s time to reevaluate.

As a young creative there is a wealth of knowledge that I can learn from people successful in the field already. It is also ok to want to work with, work at or on something with a creative I look up to. But as far as desire to be a certain person, that doesn’t quite work for me.


*Name has been changed because this is not pointed at him.