became a copywriter

How I Quit My Job and Became a Copywriter

Have you ever dreamed of writing at home for a living?

I know I did before I became a copywriter.

After many years of dealing with rude customers and working for companies who didn’t really care about me at restaurants, retail stores, a golf course, and a bank, that dream felt too good to be true.

…But I actually made it happen.

If you are where I was, I want you to know that you deserve to have a career you’re passionate about that also provides a comfortable life. And while everyone’s experience with entrepreneurship or a writing career is different, it’s not impossible.

First, I want to acknowledge that privilege and lived experience make everyone’s journey different. What worked for me might not work for you, but being honest about my journey can definitely give you some insight. That’s why I want to be as transparent as possible about my story so that you can be prepared and make an informed decision.

So if you want to learn about how I quit my bank job and became a copywriter full-time, keep on reading. I hope it helps! <3

became a copywriter

The truth about mixed advice

When you first decide to work from home as a writer, you’re probably going to hear a lot of mixed advice…

Some people will swear that Upwork is the worst and to avoid it. And others will say, “I found my best clients on Upwork! It just takes time. Don’t give up.”

As I said earlier, everyone’s experience is different. Some like Upwork, and some don’t because everyone works differently. Personally, I think Upwork is a great way to find new clients. Yes, there are red-flag clients there, but there are a lot of good, genuine people too.

You’ll also want to consider if you want to be employed by a company or start your own business. That choice is totally up to you.

There’s no right or wrong way to do it. You’re most likely going to learn everything as you go. But that’s okay because we all do!

How I quit my job and became a copywriter

#1: I started a blog

became a copywriter

There are a lot of benefits to starting a blog, including the fact that you can write about whatever you want!

Here are a few other benefits:

  • It shows that you have experience writing online
  • You establish yourself as a pro
  • You’ll have writing samples to give when you’re trying to score a gig

Once you start a blog, you can even promote it through your business social media accounts. I turned my Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest into business accounts and grew a following and personal brand from there.

If you have a product or service to sell (like writing for businesses and brands), then you can create a “services” or “work with me” page on your website and lead your audience there.

Another thing that I really loved about starting a blog is that it helped improve my writing.

I spent years hating my jobs and wishing that I could write for a living, yet I never made time to write. When I started my blog, I was in a rude awakening because my writing muscles hadn’t been used in years.

My first blog post sucked. But you know what happened?

I kept writing, and as time went on, I got better!

So keep in mind: Your first blog post might not be good. That’s normal. Just start and get your writing muscle going again. The more you make time to write, the stronger your writing skills will become.

#2: I chose what was best for me

follow your heart

Six months into my blog, I discovered a whole new world.

Social media was booming with badass business owners who were doing what they loved for a living, and I was inspired by it. In other words, I caught the entrepreneurial bug.

I was miserable at my bank job. Don’t get me wrong, it was the best job I ever had. But as a creative (and a rebel), it wasn’t for me. Ya know?

My mental health had been struggling at every single job I had, and I was completely burned out.

I read a lot of blog posts and social media posts about people quitting their jobs and starting a business, and I just couldn’t contain my excitement anymore. So I decided to go for it.

I told my boyfriend about my decision, and he totally supported me. His support made me happy, so I went on to tell everyone else in my life. They had a different reaction.

My parents thought it was irresponsible. One of my friends, who was also a coworker, reacted in the worst way. That one really hurt.

My reason for including this part of the post is that dealing with family and friends who didn’t understand my decision was a really hard struggle when transitioning from a 9 to 5 to being self-employed. It made me question if I was making the right choice. I know that I’m not alone in this.

When you decide to do what’s best for you, it’s not something everyone will understand. Especially when we live in a society that tells us the right path in life is to go to college, get a secure job, and work until we retire.

And while I’m not shaming anyone who chooses that path, it’s definitely not for everyone.

#3: I did my research

research

I wish I could tell you I had a plan, but the truth is I didn’t!

I did as much research as I could before I quit my job, but I was burned out. My last days at the bank consisted of me dragging my feet, dreaming of the days when I could work on my couch in my pajamas.

(Not having a plan before you quit your job isn’t something I’d recommend. I was privileged because my boyfriend could support us while I started my business. I also made sure to save up money to last me six months. 

While I say that, I do think that if your job is hurting your mental health to the point where you don’t want to live anymore, then you should leave. No job is worth your life.)

Copywriting Research

I really began researching on my first day of being self-employed. I did this by searching for any questions I had about copywriting through Google and Pinterest.

If you want to become a copywriter too, try searching these topics:

  • How to become a copywriter
  • How I became a copywriter
  • Copywriting formulas
  • Copywriting tips for beginners
  • How to write better copy
  • What is copywriting?
  • Copywriting basics
  • Why is copywriting important?
  • How to write captivating copy
  • How to get hired as a copywriter

You’ll find that most people who write articles, blog posts, or social media posts on these topics are actually copywriters themselves. That’s how I found a lot of copywriters that I love today!

The truth is, I didn’t have money to invest in a course or coach. So I just began subscribing to other copywriters’ email lists, reading their blog posts, following them on social media, and learning what I could from them.

Anytime I learned something valuable, I’d write it down in my notes exactly how it was written. This helped me fully grasp what I was learning while also writing how the pros were writing. I began to pick up their writing voice, which would soon help me find mine. I didn’t realize it at the time, but I was doing exactly what I needed to become good at copywriting because you have to pick up other people’s voices a lot.

**Please note that I’m not saying to copy someone else’s work and pretend it’s yours. You can practice this to get better, but plagiarism is never okay.**

The more I researched, the more I realized I loved copywriting. It sounded intimidating at first, but for me, learning was a breeze! Copywriting was my thing. It made me happy, I had fun doing it, and I was pretty good at it!

Business Research

Unfortunately, copywriting wasn’t the only thing I had to research. I also had to research how to start a business.

Disclaimer: Please note that I’m not a tax professional. All of this is what I personally researched. I’m providing this information to help you to the best of my ability. If you have more questions, go to irs.gov or ask a tax professional.

If you’re starting a business, here are some things you’ll need to find out:

  • Taxes: If you have a business, you’re self-employed. That means you have to handle taxes yourself or hire a professional. You’ll need to pay quarterly taxes along with annual taxes. For quarterly taxes, I put aside 15-25% of my income. Depending on what state you live in, you may need to pay state taxes too.
  • Type of business: You’re going to need to decide your type of business. As a copywriter, you’ll most likely choose a sole proprietor or an LLC.
  • Business name: If you choose an LLC, then you’ll need to choose a business name and make sure it’s not already taken.
  • EIN: As a business owner, you’ll be giving your information to clients. An EIN is your employer identification number and is given instead of your social security to protect your information.

Other than that, I recommend having a website, a professional business email, business social media accounts, and if you want, business cards!

You also might find that clients use certain websites for their business. When you work with them, you might need to use them too. Here are some that my clients use:

    • Slack
    • Asana
    • Trello
    • PayPal
    • Zoom
    • Skype
    • Google Meets
    • Notion

#4: I kept practicing

became a copywriter

The key to getting better at anything is practice. I spent hours writing every day. One day, I was cringing at my work, and suddenly the next, I couldn’t believe I had written something so good.

Write journal entries, blog posts, social media posts, emails, etc. Just keep working on that skill, and it’ll surprise you one day.

#5: I started job hunting

job hunting

Here are some great places to search for writing jobs:

I want to remind you that everyone’s experience is different. I responded to so many writing gigs and… nothing. For months, crickets.

But don’t let that discourage you. I’ve heard other writers say that they found their first writing job a month into searching.

It wasn’t until three months into searching that I got my first response on Upwork. They paid me $5 to write an Instagram caption and left me a five-star review. Not too long after, someone else hired me and paid me $20 per Instagram post. I worked with them for a month. They also left me a five-star review.

The pay wasn’t good, but I realized that getting those five-star reviews was the key to getting hired by other people.

I soon got another short-term client, but the pay still wasn’t good enough, and I had to start considering getting a part-time job. It made me feel embarrassed, and I wondered if I had failed.

I gave myself one more week. If I could find something, I wouldn’t look for a part-time job. So I responded to every writing gig I saw.

It was a long week, but that Friday, three people responded to me. Two of them scheduled a Skype call with me, and the other immediately sent me an article to write. Both Skype calls went really well, and both became long-term clients!

The journey that I went through when I became a copywriter was long and stressful. But I know this for sure now: If you’re unhappy at your job, it’s for a reason. While it’s important to be cautious before pursuing something else, you should never have to feel stuck or hopeless at a job. If you have an opportunity to create something better for yourself, do it, and don’t let anyone hold you back.

I chose to go after my dreams, and some people disagreed. If I had listened to them, I’d still be stuck at an unfulfilling job today.

I’m currently writing this post in my bedroom and in my pajamas. It’s a Friday afternoon, and I’ve had an easier week. I’m about to log out for the day, make dinner, watch Naruto, and enjoy my weekend. It’s not always this easy, but it’s what I love to do. I’d say I chose the right path for me.

Thank you for reading my story! If you want to keep following my copywriting journey, feel free to follow me on TikTok, where I vlog and give more copywriting and business advice.

14 comments

  • I have been writing for clients for a long time but reading this blog makes me want to push some more and take risks in more ventures other than writing. This one’s really inspiring read!

  • Great post! Thank you 🙂 I’ve recently handed in my resignation at work and are finishing next week… to start my copywriting journey! I have been working on a course so I’m ready to put a website together and start pitching. I have a lot of self doubt at tha moment and are wondering if I did the right thing!

    • Thank you, Rachel!

      I wondered the same thing when I put in my two weeks. Once I started making money from my copywriting business, it was SO empowering. Never doubt yourself or what you feel called to do! That desire is in your heart for a reason. You got this. 🙂

  • Thank you for sharing your writing journey. It sounds very similar to mine. Best wishes and keep moving forward!

    Bella Boston, author and writer.?

  • This is great! I am sort of on the same journey. I just quit my teaching job and started freelancing. My husband and I were able to do it financially (so excited). I have plans for the summer and I already have one long-term client. Some days, it seems difficult but I am really happy writing. Thank you for this, I really enjoyed it.

    • Trixie, I’m so happy for you! Congratulations on your long-term client! You’re doing amazing and I’m so happy you enjoyed this blog post <3

  • Great post! I have a construction company but plan on leaving it behind so I can be home more with my daughters. I love writing and have been planning to take the leap and start my copywriting career very soon!!

  • Inspiring, currently looking to quit my job and dive head first into the ambiguous world of freelancing. Any advice?

    • Thank you! Yes, definitely save some money just in case! And focus on getting experience when you’re first starting out 🙂

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *