Monthly Online eZine  
News And Views For Working Writers

 INside Scoop
 IN Her Own Write
 Pen IN Hand
 Write On!
 Screen & Stage
 Top 10 Resources
 Book Reviews
 Items Of INterest
 Global Offerings
 INside Services
 Bill The Bard
 The Writer At Work
 Games & Puzzles
 Classic eTexts
 Free Software
 IN Banners
 Who's IN
 What's IN
 Editorial Calendar
 Join IN's Team
 Contacting IN

IN Front Cover


Learn To Be A Better Journalist

Buy Classic Literature Collections

Acclaimed Screenplay Writing Software

Books On How To Write Fiction

Become A Well Paid Travel Writer

Vote daily and raise our ranking!

January, 2008

IN Advertising

There's Money In That Junk Mail!
Someone's getting paid to write it
By  Karen Braynard

Make money writing the words for the pile of junk mail received at your home.
Direct mail - junk mail, I used to call it. But that was before I learned that copywriters can make some decent money writing direct mail packages. After all, someone is writing all this stuff that the mailman brings to my mailbox (and eventually goes to my shredder) trying to sell me something I know I don't need.

Once I learned about direct mail as a potential avenue for revenue, I started to actually read it. And yet, even knowing that I won't buy whatever they're selling, when I skim through these direct mail letters, the really good ones draw me in. If the letters are well written, sometimes I can't stop reading them; somehow they compel me to finish.

There are classes out there and boot camps that can really help you learn how to write the type of copy that direct marketers are looking for. But before you chunk down the big bucks for these classes and events - and they can run from $250-$3,000 - there is a free way to learn from the experts and possibly land a few paying gigs before you've studied with "the masters" to perfect your craft. One of the easiest ways to learn is to study what's already out there and working.
After my own careful review of the "junk" in my "snail mail" box, I can sum up direct mail in one statement: It's all about the reader.

Instead of shredding your junk mail, open it and read it. Don't skim, read! Look at how it's structured. Notice that the letters always lead you to keep reading. Every single line in a well-written direct mail piece has a specific purpose to lead you to the end result, which is to take some sort of action - whether it's to purchase something, donate to a charity, or sign a petition. If it doesn't compel you, then it's probably not an effective piece.

There are several techniques used to hook you (the reader) and keep you reading. First, notice how a good piece of direct mail is written to you personally. Direct marketers spend that extra bit to ensure your name is not only on the envelope, but in the salutation and throughout the letter as well. Their words talk to you, not at you. They empathize with your plight, no matter what it might be.

Throughout the mailing, which is often several pages long, you are pulled into their personal story. Rarely does the letter ask anything of you in the beginning. A well-written letter reads like a friend reaching out to you, relating to you, finding your emotional point and touching it.

"Before I found this training, I had only $6.46 to my name . . . " 

"A cure for Samantha was only possible because people like you cared . . ."

"You're obviously a smart investor who isn't distracted by . . ."

For this reason, direct mail is also known as one-to-one or relationship marketing.

Notice how well-written direct mail will keep you intrigued, wanting to read the next line - even though you know they're going to try to sell you something in the end, you keep reading! Notice how it rewards you for reading all the way through by giving you teasers of something of value above and beyond their product simply by showing an interest.

After the letter has convinced you that you need whatever it is they're selling, it doesn't stop there. You might already be ready to whip out that credit card, but just in case you aren't, the letter usually ends with an incentive to act immediately. It might be a statement about how low the price is only for the next few weeks. Or, it might be a dire consequence of not taking the offer (often used by life insurance companies).

Direct mail almost always ends with an extraordinary guarantee to help you realize that you can't go wrong just for trying. And, in the very end, even after you (the reader) are totally convinced this is the best deal ever, they even add a P.S. to give you one last bit of reassurance that you're making the right decision. And, perhaps there's even a P.P.S. in handwriting script to give it that last personal touch.

I used to despise direct mail packages. But that was until I learned that there's a need for it and it works. And, since it works, then perhaps it's not really the nuisance that I thought it was. After all, look how much is being spent by these companies to get your attention - and as a writer, wouldn't you like a piece of that?

IN Icon

Karen Braynard, a corporate writer and journalist, has enjoyed published success in several newspapers and magazines.  Thanks to her growing list of business clientele, she is now developing writing workshops to help her clients learn how to write for themselves, with Impact and Results!™.  Learn more at or email A networker at heart, Karen would love to hear from you.

Sign Up and Use Our New Forums! Voice Your Opinion! Discuss Our Content! Ask for Writing Assistance. Post Your Successes, Queries or Information Requests. Collaborate with Other Writers.

© Freelance Writing Organization - International 1999-2049

IN This Issue
Part III: What Your Publisher Won't Tell You
Part II: What Your Publisher Won't Tell You
Part I: What Your Publisher Won't Tell You
The Delusional Is No Longer Marginal
Part II: Researching Nonfiction
Part I: Researching Nonfiction
Rediscover Your Passion
Pet Prose
Successful Influence
There's Money In That Junk Mail!

Support IN
Receive Free Gifts
$20.00 Voluntary Contribution
$35.00 Voluntary Contribution
$50.00 Voluntary Contribution

New Novelist Software

Effectively Manage Your List

Writers Digest 101 Site Award

Your Ad Here

Traffic Swarm For Writers

Hottest Books This Month!

Whose Books Are Turning Into Movies?
Bald Ego
Mouse Over To Pause

Writer’s Block
The path to inspiration starts
Upon the trails we’ve known;
Each writer’s block is not a rock,
But just a stepping stone.

Poetry Is Not
Penned to the page
Waiting for us to admire.
It is only a lonely thought
Caught by tears on fire.

Silent Echoes
A quiet rhyme upon a page
Is what a poet gives;
Some gentle words whispered in trust
To see if memory lives.

Bard From Deadlines
What makes a poem finally work
Is not the time it takes;
It’s how the poet used the muse
To prophet from mistakes.

Be Mused
The art and craft of poetry
Are not so far apart;
The craft comes from the cunning,
The rest comes from the heart.

Fine Vintage
Don’t plant your poem on the page
As though you’re hanging drapes;
It’s shape and flow should come and grow
Like wild summer grapes.

Getting It Write
Writers write what they know best,
Their passions, fears, and dreams;
Writers rarely write about
What other call their “themes.”

Double Vision
A writer’s life is paradox,
It’s more than what it seems;
We write of our reality,
The one inside our dreams.

The echo of a promise,
The thunder of a sigh,
The music of a memory,
A child asking why.

Letter Perfect
Twenty six symbols arranged on a page
Can send a soul to heaven or torment it with rage,
Can free a fragile world or hold it in its net--
The power and the magic of the mighty alphabet.

The Write of Passage
The jump from writing just for fun
To getting paid for it
Begins when you first realize
You know you’ll never quit.

It is not the magic of his wings
That sets us free from our bond.
It is the muse within ourselves
That lets our words lift us beyond.

Photo Poet
Consider your mind the darkroom,
Consider your life the lens,
Consider your eye the camera
On whose focus the poem depends.

Rising Moon
A poem is a rising moon
Shining on the sea,
An afterglow of all we know,
Of all we hope to be.

Star Light
Writing a poem,
Reaching a star,
In making good art
We find who we are.

Spider Web
A poem is a spider web
Spun with words of wonder,
Woven lace held in place
By whispers made of thunder.

The final draft upon the screen,
At last my poem’s through;
A verse of only four short lines--
I rewrote twenty-two!

Read All Of Charles Ghigna's Poetry at

Our Own Banner Rotator System
Any banner seen below is either our own or one of our members.
Support the cause - click a banner.

Want Your 468x60 Banner Above? It's FREE For Newly Published Books

© Freelance Writing Organization - International 1999-2049
All Rights Reserved. Copying in any way strictly forbidden.
Our Disclaimer Is Based Upon McIntyre's First Law: "Under the right circumstances, anything I tell you may be wrong."