Copywriters on the rack #21: Catherine Jones
Hello and welcome to Copywriters on the Rack. “What’s that on the walls?” you ask. Err, it’s just err… ketchup. Yes ketchup. Now stop wriggling and answer the questions.
Who are you and what do you do to pay the bills?
I’m Catherine “Jacket” Jones. I explainify things through the medium of words.
What was your career path to get to where you are now?
Pretty wonky. 15 years in teaching, popped a sprog or two, got the business bug, discovered that 15 years of teaching people to write made me quite a good writer too, found copywriting, job’s a goodun.
What’s the best thing about your job?
Loads of snacks
What’s the worst?
Too many snacks
How do you fill the gaps when you’re not doing the day job (besides snacking)?
I have small children so there are no gaps. Back in the day, I had actual hobbies – music, dancing, singing, all that jazz. Nowadays the only gaps are trips to the loo. And quite often they get interrupted too.
OK, now we’ve got the formalities out of the way, let’s go rogue:
What was your nickname at school?
Caff. Caffrun. Frun. Or R-Caff.
Said in a Bristolian accent.
Write me a poem about WAITING
The bus is late. Shall we wait?
Or hurry to another stop
to catch a different route?
Caught between stops.
The bus bounces past
On its merry way.
As we say in Bristol:
Who would win in a fight, John Prescott or Captain America?
If Prescott still has his two pet jaguars, that’s 3 on 1. Cats fight dirty. My money’s on them.
Write me three straplines for:
1) Three-legged trousers
Stand on your own 3 feet
2) Dawkin’s Instant Knowledge Pills
Do you seek a Eureka?
3) The Government’s ‘Let’s Get Britain Smoking Again’ campaign
What would you like to come back as, if there’s a next time?
Penguins always seem to have a lot of fun. And I love swimming in the sea. Plus, you’d never be short of pals.
Draw me a picture of an octopus at the hairdresser’s (yes I know you’re a writer, but do it anyway)
“No, but have you been watching Squid Games?”
Copywriting is like Grooming a Rottweiler in a zero gravity chamber, discuss.
Grooming a scary big black rottie
Who’s bouncing in zero gravity
Is like writing a blog
In the midst of word fog
Without any sign of a cuppatea
You’re feeling down in the dumps. What do you need to perk you up again?
A good old boogie to a groovy disco tune on the radio. You can’t be down with disco.
Damn, I was hoping you’d say electrodes. What is love?
Your small child running across the room at your dad’s 70th birthday party to proclaim to you first – before anyone else – “I’VE DONE A POO!”
Pick a random pic from your camera roll and tell us about it.
I watched this caterpillar chomp slowly through this flower (nasturtium? Geranium? kinda thing) over the course of a few hours. After a while, I was cheering it on. It was so focused. So determined. And the next day, the whole thing had gone.
Write me a very short story featuring: Tom Cruise with a bloody nose, the ghost of Sid James and the phrase ‘looks like we caught Colonel Sanders with his pants down’.
“Not again, Tom” the director sighed as Tom woke up with a nosebleed and ruined another ghost costume.
“That’s the fifth ghost outfit you’ve ruined mate. And we’re running out of pillowcases.”
“Goddamit!” cried Tom in frustration. “Get me some more frozen peas!”
The director shook her head. “Was it him, again, Tom? Was it Sid? C’mon, help me, help you.”
Tom gave his director the side-eye. Was she quoting him again? No. It must be a coincidence. She wouldn’t be so unprofessional – would she?
Tom decided to open up. “Yes, I had another nightmare about Sid James. It’s this biopic. Ghost of Sid James by day, ghost of Sid James by night. I can’t escape him! And it’s getting worse.”
“More double entendres?” she enquired
“Shall I give you one?” he replied
“Sorry” he said, embarrassed.
Holding up the bag of peas, and gesturing to a nearby runner, he winked “shall I give her some?”
And suddenly, the big producer swept in (it was Des O’Connor). “Tom, Delilah, we’re shuttin’ production down. This Sid James biopic ain’t gonna run. It’s not the pillowcases, it’s the petit pois. You’ve blown the budget.”
Tom and Delilah the director looked shocked “Oh and Tom” Des continued “this dirty old man act has gotta stop. It’s too much of a risky business.”
“Has someone complained?”
“It’s classified. I could tell you, but then I’d have to kill you. Like that time I caught Col. Sanders with his pants down.”
Tom looked worried “Was the colonel’s underwear a matter of national security?”
Des sighed and took Tom to one side. “Tom, son. You may not realise it, but I was once a weak man.”
“Once a week is enough for any man, Des!”
And with that, Tom let off an enormous “FNAAARRR” and removed his latex face mask, revealing the REAL SID JAMES underneath. He scarpered off to his trailer, rubbing his hands together and cackling despicably.
“Wow!” cried Des in surprise.
“Well.” Delilah nodded, knowingly. “I guess he really pulled it off.”
What’s the last thing that made you laugh?
I once couldn’t remember the word for crown. So I said “king hat”. It still reduces me to a chortling mess.
What’s the last thing that made you cry?
Strictly Come Dancing last week. Live performances get me all emotional. Singing, dancing, anything really. When it’s done well, and with heart, it gets me right in the feels.
Write me dictionary definition entries for ‘Wilcock’s Lexicofantabulous Compendium of Oddities and Soddities’:
Verb to whiffle – when something smelly tickles the snozzage
Like the Spanish ambole, meaning 2-piece suit. But sluttier.
3) Montague’s Pocket
A long-forgotten London Underground stop. Not far from Mornington Crescent, I believe.
What would you do with your last tenner?
Buy chocolate. Or chips. Actually both.
Make up your own question and tell me whatever you want to get off your chest.
Why haven’t you won the lottery yet?
No idea. Think it’s a conspiracy.
Give me three reasons why I should let you go.
1) My eyes have gone square from staring at this screen.
2) My bum’s gone numb from sitting in this chair.
3) And I need to check my lottery numbers!
And before I remove the shackles, tell us where we can find you online.
This is going to be cracking once I’ve finished the new version https://cleanslatecopywriting.co.uk/
Right, Jones. Get orf me rack and don’t look back. Gertcha, before I get the ghost of Sid James on t’ ya!