Karen Marston (@KarenMarston) is an independent copywriter and the founder of Untamed Writing. Dissatisfied with her earlier roles, Karen took to writing SEO-focused articles and now works with clients writing bold, memorable copy for websites and other projects.

Her latest project is a foray into teaching. She now instructs others how to be effective, productive freelance writers. Our conversation discusses her personal workflows and habits, as well as her outlook on teaching and client project management.

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Show Notes & Links

  • Karen describes herself simply as “a writer”
  • Karen started writing SEO-optimised articles — 500 word articles heavy with keywords to bring attention to the clients
  • Lately, Karen is taking on personal writing
  • JK Rowling, author of the Harry Potter books, has a higher net worth than Queen Elizabeth II
  • Karen now earns more from teaching than from writing
  • Organisations struggle to have a voice, even though they talk about “brand voice” and whatnot

“As much as graphics and photos are essential on the web, it's still mostly a written medium.”

—Prescott Perez-Fox

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“A brand is the human component of a non-human entity.”

—Prescott Perez-Fox

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  • Eat24, Mailchimp — brands with personality, especially in their written voices

“Serious and professional are not the same thing. You can be professional without being serious.”

—Karen Marston

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“I'm a best-selling author, not a best-writing author.”

—Robert Kiyosaki

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Tools

Techniques

  • Drop the serious, professional, corporate persona and write like an actual person
  • Be surprisingly human in your writing
  • Keep projects to two week periods: first week is planning, strategy, and first draft. Second week is for editing.
  • Allow unlimited revisions … but limit the time of the overall projects
  • Don’t specify to clients why you’re unavailable, just say when you can fit them in
  • Offer to connect a client with another writer (or designer)
  • Participate in a community and observe the questions being asked … then seek to answer them.

Habits

  • Cross a big diagonal stripe across a paper to show that everything on it is finished
  • Don’t get out of bed until getting 8 hours sleep
  • Take time on Mondays to plan the week
  • [Try to] work out everyday, perhaps taking a 28-day challenge
  • Avoid the supermarket on Sundays (take advantage of your own schedule)

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About the author: Prescott Perez-Fox

Prescott Perez-Fox is a New York-based graphic designer and brand developer with 17+ years experience in branding, packaging, graphic design, and web design. He runs The Busy Creator.

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