Writing Copy Before Bestsellers – Six Famous Authors And The Advertising Campaigns They Created

by |June 7, 2013

Mark Twain once said, “Many a small thing has been made large by the right kind of advertising.”

And before they became world famous novelists, these authors knew just the right kind…

Fay Weldon

As an advertising copywriter, Weldon devised the famous Go To Work On An Egg campaign that is still used in Britain today.

Click here for titles from Fay Weldon

Salman Rushdie

The Man Booker Prize winner was responsible for coining the phrase Naughty But Nice for real-cream TV adverts, and came up with Irresistibubble as the catch phrase for Aero chocolate bars.

Click here for titles from Salman Rushdie

Ernest Hemingway

The Nobel Prize-winning author appeared and wrote the copy for several ads for both Parker Pens and Ballantine Ale, for which he unsurprisingly received payment in both products.

Click here for titles from Ernest Hemingway

Dorothy L. Sayers

The brilliant English crime writer and essayist coined the classic Guinness Is Good For You slogan, during her stint in advertising

Click here for titles from Dorothy L. Sayers

Brendan Behan

Was also asked to think of a slogan for Guinness and took a crate of the famous dark ale as payment. The next morning he turned up with an empty crate and a small piece of paper that said, “Guinness: It Makes You Drunk”.

Click here for titles from Brendan Behan

Bryce Courtenay

Courtenay entered the advertising industry and, over a career spanning 34 years, was the Creative Director behind campaigns that included Louie the Fly, the original Milkybar Kid commercial and the Australian Labor Party’s 1972 election campaign, ‘It’s Time’.

Click here for titles from Bryce Courtenay

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About the Contributor

Andrew Cattanach is a regular contributor to The Booktopia Blog. He has been shortlisted for The Age Short Story Prize and was named a finalist for the 2015 Young Bookseller of the Year Award. He enjoys reading, writing and sleeping, though finds it difficult to do them all at once.

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  • June 13, 2013 at 9:26 pm

    Peter Carey was also a copywriter and opened McSpedden Carey in Sydney around 1980 with Bani McSpedden.

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