Keep Work at Work

Lying About ThinkingI cheated at interning. LevLane Advertising|PR|Digital let me inside their walls as a copywriting intern, treated me with nothing but kindness, told me anything they thought might possibly help push my abilities as a writer, and I had the gaul to leave work every Tuesday through Thursday… and try to beat the system.

Oh, they warned me. During a lunch break around my third week at the agency, the copywriter in charge of assigning new creative work to the interns caught me red handed. I approached him outside of the building as he left for a mid-day bite, and asked him something along the lines of: “What direction are you thinking about for the fall Dilworth Park campaign? Do you have any kind of tone in mind?” It just slipped out. He kindly told me I didn’t have to worry about it over my lunch break… but I was hooked.

I started mulling over headlines on the subway, cooking up campaign ideas while walking to the grocery store, and pondering taglines inside the shower. I even thought of a “fall-related, snappy headline” that sounded “geared toward young, socialite twenty-somethings” that same fateful lunchbreak. Pretty soon I was mentally taking my work everywhere I went… and it felt good.

 Should I be ashamed? I was, after all, breaking the golden rule of the work week: “Leave work at work.” After settling into a career, I understand the importance of finding things outside of your profession that you find pleasure in doing, and giving yourself time to relax. Right now, however, I want to take my energy and excitement for writing copy, and spread it all over. I want to leave a little breadcrumb trail of copy behind me, so when an agency sees a piece of my writing, they know where to find the rest. So tonight, right there at the dinner table, against the advice of my superiors… I’m going to cheat again.


One comment

  1. Interesting post. There’s no doubt that you definitely put yourself into your writing considering you write as if you were literally thinking these exact words in your mind; this style of writing often being discouraged in school research papers. Yet, I think this field quite suits you as in Advertising we all know it’s extremely encouraged to hold on to your individuality (especially in the work place), and as a copywriter you must write as if you were inside the customer’s mind as soon as they take notice of whatever advertisement your copy is in. So, with the whole “cheating” concept which is doing the vice-versa (bringing your work outside of work instead of bringing your outside interests to work), my advice is simple: balance. It’s a world so simply understood yet hard for people to adapt to. I think that it’s great that you are enthusiastic about the future of your career, your new internship, and finding your place in the work-world. I personally don’t see anything wrong with being so passionate of “copy-writer world” and I do see that you noticed that your thoughts are consumed by your work. And for this time of your life, I think it’s actually beneficial. But, I guess what I’m trying to say is EVENTUALLY you do need to find a balance and there is a down-side by being overly-consumed with your work. Anyway, you’re only an intern for now so it’s nothing to worry about. Enjoy your internship as much as you can and if it becomes a temporary obsession, then so be it. I guess it’s good to just keep in mind that there is life outside of the work world, that we can always incorporate back into our work. Hope you enjoyed your internship and that you continue your passion for copywriting.

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