Apprentice copywriter job – Casual role, work from home

July 27, 2015 •
Apprentice copywriter job ad feature image

Are you a great writer who wants to become a great copywriter?

I’m after an apprentice copywriter. Someone I can train up to be as good as me. Hopefully someone who’ll stick with me for a long time.

Why an apprentice?

I’ve tried outsourcing to experienced copywriters in the past, and it just doesn’t work. They’re either too expensive, they don’t get my clients or they don’t care about the results. (In fact, in a recent interview with Kate Toon and Belinda Weaver, I said outsourcing was my biggest business mistake ever. It’s cost me a lot of money and caused a lot of grey hairs.)

So after 13 years in business, I’ve decided to do things differently. Instead of simply throwing the occasional job at someone and hoping they can do it, I’m going to invest some time teaching them.

How it would work

Unless you live near me, most of my teaching will be remote (Skype, screen-sharing, phone, email, etc.), and it’ll be mostly ‘on the job’ stuff, where I get you to work on a job and coach you where you need it. I don’t have much time, and my workload is up and down, so I can’t commit to a certain number of hours per week, or anything like that.

And on that note, work would be intermittent. At least to begin with.

The pay

This is NOT an internship. You’ll get paid for each job you do (UNLESS you deliver late). How much? We’ll have to figure that out as we go, but it won’t be squillions, sorry. I’ll be investing serious time training you, so for quite a while, you’ll actually be a cost to my business. Of course, once you start making me a profit, we’ll come to a different arrangement.

The requirements

The first two are equally important.

  1. You must already be an awesome writer. I don’t care about experience, but I won’t consider anyone who’s merely ‘proficient’. You have to have flair. You have to be bold. You have to make me want to read your stuff – whatever it is. I’ll be teaching you the skill and business of copywriting; I won’t be teaching you how to write. There’s a very big difference.
  2. You have to be able to figure out what needs to be said, not just how to say it. This means putting yourself in the client’s shoes, and in the shoes of their customer. It means you have to have common sense and an interest in human psychology and business. And because clients rarely provide enough information, it also means you need a lot of smarts to fill in the gaps. This is just as important as your ability to write.
  3. You have to be curious and a fast learner. Versatile and excited by challenges, not daunted. You’ll be writing about everything from nanotechnology to male sex toys. And you’ll be writing heaps of different stuff (web copy, scripts, press releases, case studies, ads), in different styles (usually conversational-professional but occasionally colloquial or formal).
  4. You must live in Australia (I’ll be super excited if you live on the Central Coast), and English must be your first language.
  5. You’ll need an Australian Business Number (ABN) before I can pay you.
  6. You must be able to accept guidance and work independently.
  7. You must have a computer with a modern version of Microsoft Word.

More info

To apply

Send 5 samples of your writing to glenn at divinewrite dot com dot au, along with anything else you think I’ll be impressed by. As I said above, I’m not too worried about experience, but you MUST be an awesome writer already. So you must send me the samples, otherwise you won’t get a look-in. I don’t care if they’re not copywriting samples or even if they weren’t written for real clients (e.g. you wrote them just for me). All I care about is whether they knock my socks off.

If you can also prove item 2 from my list of requirements above, that’d be awesome. It’s a tough one to prove, I know, so don’t go tying yourself up in knots to do it. But I’ll definitely view it favourably if you can.

Note that if I don’t choose you, I won’t have time to explain why. Sorry. I’m after something very specific, and because I’ll receive hundreds of applications, there’s no way I can provide constructive feedback to everyone.

Oh, and also note that it could take me a while to get back to you. I want to get someone on-board ASAP, but as I’m currently my only copywriter, client work comes first.

Feel free to comment...
comment avatar
bill carney wrote on July 27th, 2015

Gee, Glenn its 1.27 am.. I must be dreaming.. my dream job ! I suspect a tech / gen gap in our trajectories.. but, now I'm in the gun.. I'll take a shot. (be in touch )

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Tanja @ Crystal Clarity wrote on July 27th, 2015

Damn... I seriously thought about applying for this (I'd love to learn from you!), but alas, I live on the wrong side of the Tasman. Best of luck finding the right person :-)

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Glenn Murray wrote on July 27th, 2015

Sounds good! Look forward to hearing from you, Bill. :-)

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Glenn Murray wrote on July 27th, 2015

lol. Like you need to be anyone's apprentice.

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Bec Butterworth wrote on July 28th, 2015

Hi Glenn, I love this ad. I'm a brilliant writer. Hire me. I am a successful freelance journalist and writer. I write a bit for the Age and the Sunday Age, but I'm looking to move into copy writing. The UNESCO Melbourne City of Literature like my stuff - so much so, they just gave me a grant to write my book on rural suicide. So does the Wheeler Centre - they gave me one two, and a Hot Desk Fellowship. Copy needs to be crisp and concise. It needs to shock with clarity. I'm the guy (girl) that's always making things more clear. Damn I am! I've been looking for a role like this for a while. I will apply soon, and properly. Thanks for the ad. Bec

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Jackson Zilko wrote on July 28th, 2015

This really looks like a brilliant opportunity. I check all the boxes, but currently live in the UAE. Until next time, Glenn Murray.

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Glenn Murray wrote on July 28th, 2015

Hi Bec. Great stuff. Look forward to hearing from you. :-)

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Glenn Murray wrote on July 28th, 2015

Yeah, sorry, I really need someone local. The time difference is just too difficult. :-\

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Rob Sweetten wrote on July 29th, 2015

Have occasionally wondered about taking this route myself. Would love to hear how it works out for you. Best of luck. Cheers Rob.

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Glenn Murray wrote on July 29th, 2015

Hey Rob. Thanks for your comment. Yeah, as a freelancer, it's all too tempting to just take the lowest up-front cost route, but it's never worked for me. I think I have to invest in it properly. Like anything.

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Felix Ratcliff wrote on August 3rd, 2015

Hi Glenn, I've just bailed from a decade in the NFP sector, live Eastern in Sydney and am looking precisely for a developing role like yours. Will be in contact directly. These words and pictures will tell you a lot about me! therestlessmain.blogspot.com Cheers, Felix

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Glenn Murray wrote on August 3rd, 2015

Hey Felix. Looking forward to receiving it. :-)

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Felix wrote on August 10th, 2015

Hi Glenn, Done mate! Let me know if you require anything else. Cheers, Felix

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Glenn Murray wrote on August 10th, 2015

Thanks! :-)

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Steve wrote on March 4th, 2016

Hi, I'm Steve, live on the Coast and i am looking for a change. I've been a sports journalist for 23 years, 15 of which as sports editor of a major suburban newspaper. If you think I'd be suitable in anyway please drop me an email, I can then give you all my details , examples of work etc. thanks for reading. Steve

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angela grevet wrote on April 5th, 2016

My skin jumps with glee as I read your post... yet ponder... have I missed the boat? or is there a new opportunity that could be mine... is it worth my while dropping you a line... I wait to hear with baited breath.... yet it's not a matter of life and death... the universe will send me where I need to be... I'll just be patient and wait to see.... I've just moved to the coast... after 20 years in the big smoke... about to start a freelance role.... with no experience will use my heart and soul... so any guidance you could partake.... would put the icing on my cake... thank you for your precious time.... to ready my silly little rhyme... not exactly the corporate flair... but that's not my audience, so I don't care... Glenn, I look forward to hearing from you... and if I don't, I won't feel blue... just know that there's nothing else for me to do... as this ad is well and truly through... have a great sunny day... and hope you send some words back my way...

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Jackson Zilko wrote on November 21st, 2016

Hey Glenn Very late now on this one but it's worth a crack. I'm now based in Sydney working as an analyst in digital advertising. It's all numbers and any opportunity to get back to using the alphabet would really be great. If you're chasing anyone for a role like this in the future be sure to keep me in mind. Cheers mate. /Jackson

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