As the school year draws to an end we, future graduates, wonder what we are supposed to do with the skills learned to earn our degrees. This was the opportunity for Michael Wong, a 2015 Chapman alum with a degree in Creative Writing in Wilkinson College and CEO and co-founder of Peeka VR, a literary tech company that allows children to experience their favorite books using VR technology, to come speak with students in the English Department in a workshop titled, “Make Money Storytelling as a Copywriter in Marketing & Advertising.”

Michael Wong, ’15

Wong’s passionate and encouraging visit was inspiring. It was obvious he wanted those attending to leave the discussion excited for the future. His talk immediately relieved students of their anxieties and was simple and direct. His assertion that we shouldn’t listen to anyone, professor or outsider, tells us that we can only teach with our knowledge of literature and techniques in writing, was reassuring. n other words, he told us that there isn’t any such thing as “what we are supposed to do” with our degrees.

In a quick breakdown, these are Wong’s Facts:

Copywriting Basics: 

  • “People hate to write.” That is where we are most important!
  • Marketing, Ads, and PR function are all just slogans, catchphrases, jingles, taglines, commercials, blog posts, website design, brochures, video games,  even emails, and anything else you can think of that are meant to catch the attention of the general public to sell a product or service. They all require a creative brain that knows how to grab people’s attention with wordplay.
  • We may not believe it, but most people know when they are reading something amazing. And not only have we trained to know when something is good, can draw the eye and ears of a spectator, but we are also ones who naturally know when something is capable of having an impact on an audience.
  • Copywriting is an excellent opportunity to freelance and still manage the life that you want! You are your own agent, you can build client trust that allows you to be creative freely, you have the “potential” to have a higher return financially, you build your networks,  and the job is malleable.
  • The downfalls to the copywriting life are inconsistent pay, and you are your own agency! But when managing yourself, the anxieties of such a life can also be managed by you, right?

So, how do you feel now?

I was so hyped about graduating with a Master’s Degree in Creative Writing that I applied for three jobs immediately after the presentation, without any sort of thought to not getting the jobs. I was just happy to send in my CV and know that those jobs aren’t my last resort. I hope that you can get the same sense of encouragement.

To learn more about copywriting opportunities and other career choices, please contact the Wilkinson College Career Advisor, Erin Berthon. Ask her about Michael Wong!