Copywriting, Writing

CSIRO ECOS blog: Oil and Gas Infrastructure

An offshore oil platform seen from shore

I’m really pleased to share another post that I’ve written for CSIRO.

Like the Future Seas 2030 post that I wrote last month, this was a piece of writing commissioned by the Oceans and Atmosphere Division. It even involved speaking to one of the same researchers – 2020 Tasmanian Australian of the Year Dr Jess Melbourne-Thomas. Continue reading “CSIRO ECOS blog: Oil and Gas Infrastructure”

Copywriting, Writing

CSIRO ECOS blog: Future Seas 2030

A close up image of waves in the ocean

If you follow any of my social media channels you’ll know that I absolutely love the ocean. I was born on a small island in Scotland, and now live on a small island in Australia. I’m never happier than when I’m surrounded by water.

I was thrilled a few weeks ago to receive a commission from CSIRO’s Oceans and Atmosphere division to write a piece for the ECOS blog on the Future Seas 2030 initiative. Continue reading “CSIRO ECOS blog: Future Seas 2030”

Copywriting

Stories from the Huon

A screenshot of the Huon Valley website

Huon Valley Council have launched a fantastic new website recently that is packed with information about the area. The Huon is one of our favourite spots in Tasmania, it’s absolutely beautiful, but between the terrible bush fires last year and the huge drop in tourism because of COVID19 restrictions this year, the area has been doing it pretty tough. Continue reading “Stories from the Huon”

Copywriting, Feature Writing, freelance life, Writing

February 2020: Back to work!

View of desk from above with caption 'Back to work'!

After a long and lovely summer holiday which included a trip to Hawaii for a family wedding – lucky me ­– I’m finally back at my desk.

Even after six years living in Tasmania, I haven’t quite adjusted to taking a break in January. For all my friends in the Northern Hemisphere, the turn of the year marks that moment when they start to feel energised with new ambitions and resolutions; whereas here it simply marks the start of a month off.

That means when February does roll around, and school goes back at last, it can feel like there’s an awful lot to catch up on. Continue reading “February 2020: Back to work!”

Copywriting, Feature Writing, freelance life, Writing

My freelance year: the good, the bad and the ugly

black background with caption 'My freelance year: the good, the bad and the ugly' by Ruth Dawkins

Another year just about done!

2019 has been a very busy one here, so I thought I’d finish it by sharing a quick post with you about the good, the bad, and the ugly of my year in work. I am a big fan of being transparent about the highs and lows of freelancing, so that others who are considering making that jump have a realistic sense of what it entails. Continue reading “My freelance year: the good, the bad and the ugly”

Copywriting

Tasmania: Come Down for Air

Tourism Tasmania Come Down for Air campaign launch image

I was really excited yesterday to see that Tourism Tasmania have launched their latest campaign – Come Down For Air.

The behind-the-scenes details of the brand launch, which includes commercials, videos, adverts and a dedicated Come Down for Air website can be found on the Tourism Tasmania website, while the public facing site is DiscoverTasmania.com/air. Continue reading “Tasmania: Come Down for Air”

Copywriting, freelance life

Working from home as a couple

Work desk with books, pencils and glasses. Captioned 'working from home as a couple... here's how we do it.' by Ruth Dawkins

My husband and I have just survived our first year working from home together.

Actually, let me rephrase that. My husband and I have just finished a fantastic first year working from home together.

I’ve been a freelancer working from my home office for almost ten years. The amount of work I’ve taken on has increased as my son has grown older and spent more time away from me – first in childcare and then at primary school. But throughout that time I’ve had the chance to put systems and processes in place that maximise my efficiency, and I’ve developed the required discipline to ignore the piles of laundry that always need putting away and instead sit down at my desk, day after day. Continue reading “Working from home as a couple”

Copywriting

Freycinet Resort website – done!

a screenshot from the Freycinet Resort website in Tasmania

I spotted earlier today that a project I worked on in June and July has now gone live – and it looks fantastic!

Freycinet Resort offers beautiful eco-accommodation on Tasmania’s East Coast. The property has recently come under new management, and the owners wanted to completely refresh their website to reflect the new direction they’ll be taking the resort in. Continue reading “Freycinet Resort website – done!”

Copywriting, Feature Writing, freelance life

How to get out of a writing slump

Image of crumpled paper in a bin and wording 'How to get out of a writing slump' by Ruth Dawkins

Write a content calendar, they said!

Plan a year’s worth of blog posts in advance, they said!

So, I did, and yet somehow it’s May 7th and I’m only now publishing the post that I’d planned for early April… I’ve had two big copywriting projects on the go, both of which required me to work through the school holidays, so when I did have spare time it felt much more important to spend that with my family rather than tinkering away in the back of my website.

However, school is now back, my diary is a little more under control, and I’ve got a chance to share this post that has been sitting in note form in my drafts folder for several weeks.

Somewhat ironically, given how busy I’ve been, I decided that in April I would write about how to get yourself out of a writing slump. Continue reading “How to get out of a writing slump”

Copywriting, Feature Writing, freelance life

Should you ever write for free?

Caption 'Should you ever write for free' above dollar bill

The question of whether a professional writer – or an aspiring professional writer – should ever write for free is one that comes up regularly in online groups and discussion forums, and it always provokes healthy debate.

One camp says no, never, absolutely not. A writer should never write for free: we should value our time and expertise; by completing work without payment we’re undercutting other writers; and besides, no-one can pay the rent with ‘exposure’.

The opposing camp would say that writers – especially those who are new to the business – need to build their experience and portfolio and writing for free is often a good way to do that.

Ever keen to find a compromise, I find myself sitting somewhat awkwardly between the two camps. Continue reading “Should you ever write for free?”