The Biggest Mistake Of My Life Was That I Tried Being A Copywriter: I Shouldn't Have

Bhumika Mistry Bhumika Mistry in Let's Face It on 17 January, 2017

I'm not here to talk about manicures and pedicures or what went wrong with my married or love life. I'm here to talk about how I was forced to give up on myself and my ambitions because I was convinced I wasn't good. My jobs and seniors convinced me that I was bad at what I did.

Yes, girls do talk about career and ambitions so don't be surprised.

So here's where it all started, my road to failure. After graduating, I gave around 20 interviews just to get an internship. The intention wasn’t to get a high paid job. It was foolish to even think about it. As an enthusiastic media student I wanted to get into copywriting. And if anyone knows even a fraction of the type of work I'm talking about, he/she would surely know how difficult it is to get that job profile and maintain it.

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Why did I say that? Because it was seriously injudicious of me to think that I could be a copywriter just by scribbling some poems and short stories. At least I thought it was way too naive of me to think like that. However, after the 20th interview I got my life’s first job. But no one told me that first jobs are meant to break you; also no one warned me about mean and cruel female bosses. 

That's a story for another time - why women like to stand against each other rather than with each other in this country.

So in my first job, I was being bogged down. The boss was not someone who could teach or guide me. She didn’t have that kind of patience or she expected too much! I can’t blame her completely as I was the one with filthy grammatical errors, obnoxious sentence structures, and poor vocabulary. I did take external help to 'brush' up my grammar but somehow, that external help didn't help either, I was being crushed.

I almost gave up on the thought of being a copywriter or a writer. But something inside me just wanted to fight back to awaken the writer in me. After a torturous year, I landed another job.
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This job proved to be good for my ego because this place didn’t challenge my writing skills. I am talking about writing huge piles of brochures, social media content or e-mailers.

This profile dealt with working as a mainline copywriter.

The job did involve intensive creative thinking and conceptualising but somehow, I didn’t have to worry about the grammar. I had to visualize and come up with ideas for television commercials, radio, print, hoardings etc. I even wrote scripts, gave major insights for many campaigns; I even got to work with stars. 

I had my moments of fame in this job, before that also came crashing down.

My boss was too sweet to pick on my grammar and sentence structures. As I didn’t face that problem anymore I thought I had improved. Sadly, I was so-so wrong. So I moved to another agency that was one step higher and thousand steps scarier. I thought, 'I can’t be that bad at it. I know, I do lack in 'writing' skills but visually and creatively I'm not a handicap.'

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The problem here was the big shift, from a laid-back mainline agency to on-the-toes-fast-pace digital agency. But I failed again and again and again till one day I decided to do something that changed my life for good. 

 (For the next part of the story, click here.)