It's clean up time
The art of editing in copywriting
Welcome to the 16th issue of Write On!
The newsletter that eats its Oreos the same way it puts on a shirt… one sleeve at a time.
Estimated read time: 3 mins 8 secs
But first, a quick announcement…
📣 NEW Referral Reward Available!
Access a database with all 83 copywriting links shared in the first 15 issues of Write On — all in one place — so you can easily refer to these tips and resources anytime.
Top Finds This Week:
📖 Storytelling: Tell effective stories in your copy by creating a villain. Remember, it doesn't need to be an actual person. Here’s a quick example: (link)
🧠 Psychology: In case you missed it, I created a free guide with 44 Emotional Marketing Copywriting Tips so you can connect with your readers on a deeper level. Access the free guide here: (link)
🖼 Framework: Steal these 15 blog title templates that have generated millions in traffic and revenue (link)
📜 Principles: Avoid the 5 biggest writing mistakes that stop you from earning money (link)
⚙️ Resource: 5 resources to help you stay ahead of the AI curve and future-proof your writing skillset (link)
🤖 AI: 6 prompts to edit your writing like a published author (link)
🎁 Bonus: I’ve generated over $50,000,000 in email marketing revenue throughout my career. Email copywriting is my bread and butter. So I put together a free Email Copywriting 101 guide for you. Grab it here (link)
From clunky to crisp
My buddy, Aazar, asked me about my editing process the other day.
I know his alarm is set never to miss a Write On newsletter, so… ask, and you shall receive!
Let’s dive in 👇
The importance of the editing process:
Editing is the time to cut words out as if they cost you money. To be as concise as possible while getting your message across most effectively.
There’s a famous quote that has always stuck with me related to editing:
If I Had More Time, I Would Have Written a Shorter Letter.
It should be the most time-consuming part of the writing process…
How much time should you spend editing?
I shared this thought a few weeks ago on Twitter related to editing:
Copywriting myth: Writing is 100% of the work.
• 10% writing
• 40% research
• 50% editing and refining
Do you agree?
— Joe Portsmouth 🧲 (@joe_portsmouth)
Apr 24, 2023
Why this much time on editing?
Because it’s tough to write AND edit at the same time.
It requires two different mindsets.
Writing requires creativity, continuous flow, etc.
Editing requires attention to detail, brevity, connecting thoughts, etc.
You can try to do both simultaneously, but it will cost you time.
My messy editing process:
I’m an extremely organized person. I’m clean. I know where things are. I enjoy using systems, processes, and frameworks.
My editing process is not like that, though.
I don’t have a “go-to” system of QA for every piece of writing.
But here’s how my writing and editing process roughly shakes out:
Whenever I write a longer form post (like this newsletter), I try to go in with a rough outline of what I want to write about.
Here’s how I structured today’s section:
The Brain Dump:
From there, I’ll start typing away. I don’t give much thought to what I’m writing.
I just write.
I write until I feel all the main points have been accounted for.
This completes the rough first draft.
The First Edit
Next, I’ll review everything I’ve written and start cleaning things up.
Typos, poor grammar, irrelevant words, and sentences, etc.
I always have Grammarly turned on to catch many of these obvious errors (I highly recommend this tool if you’re not using it already).
The Second Edit
The second time around, I’m looking to clean up my thoughts.
I want to ensure my ideas flow seamlessly from one line to the next.
No wasted space.
This part of the editing process takes the longest because I’m carefully trying to pick the best and fewest words possible.
Give It Some Time
I'll let my draft sit for a night if I have time before publishing.
Then I’ll return to it with fresh eyes the next day and undoubtedly find something I didn’t catch the first time.
If I plan well and have even more time, I’ll run my writing through some final exercises:
Then I’ll give it one final read on desktop and mobile and hit publish.
And that’s it!
P.S. If you want me to cover a particular copywriting topic in a future newsletter, reply to this email and let me know! I read every reply.
That’s all for this week. Thanks for reading.
See you next Wednesday!
P.S. Whenever you’re ready, here are two ways I can help you:
P.P.S. If you've got a moment, I'd love to get your feedback:
What did you think of today's newsletter?