Copywriting Secrets for Writers

Marketers use these time-tested strategies to gain attention and get their messages read. You could, too.


Catherine Baab-Muguira


Live on Dec. 1, 2021, or watch recording


Writers who want to improve their ability to market and sell


Closed captions by Otter; transcript provided with recording

The literary marketplace is as crowded as a stadium concert, and you’re stuck. To gain attention and get published, you have to break through the noise. This is where copywriting—i.e. marketers’ classic, universal, time-tested methods for crafting compelling messages—comes in. Fail to understand these methods, and you’re at a serious disadvantage.

The good news? Copywriting techniques are easy to learn and implement, and you can start using them right away to grow your audience and improve your personal “response rates” with editors and agents. But the benefits don’t stop there. Once you grasp these principles, you’re better able to “read” the literary marketplace, seeing it like the pros do, and understanding in real time why certain articles go viral, why one book vastly outsells another, and of course, why some projects never get off the ground at all.

The very best news? By mastering copywriting techniques, you can start to enjoy the self-promotion process. Your marketing efforts can become a source of satisfaction and enjoyment whether you’re …

  • a brand-new writer just learning the ropes, or
  • a novelist hoping to land your dream agent, or
  • a nonfiction writer pitching freelance articles, or
  • a person hoping to pursue copywriting full-time, or
  • an introvert who shudders at the very idea of self-promotion

… This class could be perfect for you: outlining the who, what, when, where, and how of copywriting so that you feel more in control of your writing career and, at last, on track to achieve your writing dreams.

In this December 1 class, writers will learn:

  • How to craft subject lines that ensure your emails get opened
  • The best times of week and day to send queries and pitches
  • Why some headlines outperform others, and how to write winning headlines for blog posts and author newsletters
  • When to use short messages—and when to go long
  • How to format your marketing messages to ensure that recipients don’t miss your most important points

Plus so much more. At the end of this crash course, you will understand the time-tested principles of copywriting and why they’re so universally effective. You’ll also feel comfortable implementing these techniques in your own marketing efforts, from emails to queries, social-media posts and beyond.

Who should take this class

This presentation is useful for both newer and more experienced writers, and the information is applicable across all genres, though it will be most relevant to writers who have completed articles, proposals and/or pitches they’re hoping to send out ASAP. The course can help if you:

  • Feel reluctant or uncomfortable in the literary marketplace
  • Are struggling to find ways to “sell” yourself and your work, not to mention the motivation and cojones
  • Are hoping to increase the number of responses you get to your queries, pitches, and other emails
  • Want to refine your existing marketing practices such as blogging and sending newsletters
  • Have little experience with marketing in general and would like a crash course in the basics through advanced techniques
  • Want to better understand why some writers succeed and others fail (hint: it’s not all down to raw talent)

Who might be disappointed by this class

  • If you’re only concerned about writing a one-page query letter for your novel, memoir or nonfiction book, this might not be the right the class for you. Instead, look for a class that deals specifically with writing query letters. This class is not a deep dive on the traditional publishing query letter.
  • If you only care about pitching literary agents, this probably isn’t the best investment of your time. This class will look at a variety of pitching/marketing situations and will not prioritize landing an agent.

How do I know if this class is worth the cost?

This is an important question, and it’s a tough one to answer—especially since so much online education is available free of charge. Furthermore, every student is different, and a valuable webinar for one person can end up being a disappointment to another. For this reason, we offer full refunds if you register, attend or watch the class, and fail to get the information you were looking for.

Do I have to attend the live classes?

No. Everyone who registers will get access to the recording. However, if you’d like to attend live, keep reading.

How do I attend the live class?

This class uses Zoom webinar technology. You will join through your Internet-connected computer or mobile device. When you register, you will receive information via email on how to join the class. If you don’t receive it within 1 hour of registering, please contact us.

  • When: Wednesday, Dec. 1, 2021
  • Time: 1:00–2:00 p.m. ET / 10:00 a.m. Pacific
  • Fee: $25

The webinar is broadcasted via the internet with live audio delivered through your computer or mobile device speakers. The visual presentation is displayed directly from the presenter’s computer to your computer screen. The Q&A is managed through a chat-style submission system with questions read and answered by the presenter for the entire class to hear.

Closed captions are provided during the live class. We use Zoom’s automated closed caption service (powered by Otter), which is about 80%+ accurate. We also use Otter AI to generate an unedited transcript, provided with the recording.

About the instructor

Catherine Baab-Muguira is a writer and freelance journalist who’s contributed to, among others, Slate, Quartz, CBBC and NBC News. Her first book, Poe for Your Problems: Uncommon Advice from History’s Least Likely Self-Help Guru, was published by Hachette in September 2021. Catherine also works full-time as a marketing copywriter, bringing a dozen years of print and web experience to teaching this course.

All students receive the following

  • Access to live class. After roughly 45-60 minutes, Catherine will take questions during class using in-class chat/text. The class will end after roughly 60-75 minutes.
  • A recording of the class—audio and video. This is especially helpful if you have a conflict with the class time or something comes up and you can’t make the session. Each registration comes with access to the archived version of the program and the materials for 30 days. You do not have to attend the live event to access the recordings.
  • Presentation slides. All participants receive a copy of the slide presentation in PDF form.
  • Rough transcript. We use Otter to create an automated transcript of the entire webinar, which we’ll share with you in addition to the audio and video recording.

Event Attendance & Anti-Harassment Policy

We strive to provide an environment where all present—whether attendee, presenter, or staff—can feel supported. In order to ensure a welcoming event, here is what we expect from all who participate.

  • That the presenter and the presenter’s work be treated with respect by attendees and that all attendees treat each other with respect and a generosity of spirit.
  • That attendees will refrain from harassment of any sort including (but not limited to) comments or questions of a racist, homophobic, sexist/sexual, or threatening nature. This includes actions that disrupt or interfere with anyone’s ability to participate. Offenders will be disconnected from the live event.

System Requirements to Join the Webinar

We will be using Zoom webinar technology.

You’ll need:

  • An internet connection: broadband wired or wireless (3G or 4G/LTE)
  • Speakers: built-in, USB plug-in or wireless Bluetooth

Recommended bandwidth:

  • 600kbps (down) for high-quality video and 1.2 Mbps (down) for HD video
  • If you connect through audio only: 60-80kbps (down)

Supported operating systems:

Supported tablet and mobile devices:

  • Surface PRO 2 running Win 8.1
  • iOS and Android devices
  • Blackberry devices

Supported browsers:

  • Windows: IE 11+,  Edge 12+, Firefox 27+,  Chrome 30+
  • Mac: Safari 7+, Firefox 27+,  Chrome 30+
  • Linux: Firefox 27+,  Chrome 30+

For a detailed listing of system requirements, check Zoom’s site.