Today we’d like to introduce you to Kendria Patterson.
So, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
I started writing in kindergarten. As soon as I learned to read, I became interested in creating my own stories. I still remember the first story I ever wrote. It was called “The Giant,” and it was about five sentences long. I ended up receiving an award from the Young Georgia Authors writing contest for it. I had a really great kindergarten teacher named Mrs. Moulton who encouraged my creativity and love for writing at an early age. Throughout elementary, middle, and high school, I continued to write stories, poems, and songs and entered writing contests. As a child, I enjoyed all things artistic, but writing has always been my absolute favorite pastime.
I ended up attending the University of West Georgia and earning a Bachelor’s degree in English, and after graduating, I was unemployed for almost a year. Honestly, I had no idea what direction to go in professionally. I’ve always been the type of person who wears their heart on their sleeve, and it was difficult for me to pretend to be passionate about positions that didn’t involve writing. I applied for hundreds of jobs and went on multiple interviews with no luck. Although my first year out of college was one of the hardest years of my life, it was during this time that I discovered digital marketing and freelance writing.
I created an account on a website called Upwork, which is a platform that allows writers, designers, website developers, and other creatives to bid for freelance gigs. The site has a bad reputation among freelancers these days, but it definitely saved me from going to bed hungry quite a few times. Between Upwork gigs and writing blog posts for my uncle’s company, I was able to build a portfolio. These pieces enabled me to land my first post-grad job. It was an administrative assistant position, but I had the opportunity to work very closely with the marketing team. I was in charge of social media, I wrote blog posts, and I helped out with print marketing materials. I had awesome co-workers who taught me about SEO and encouraged me to take courses on Hubspot. My portfolio grew even more from there, and I’ve now written content for a variety of companies including Fitplan, Choice Hotels, Alpha Medical, and Performance Rehab NJ to name a few.
Has it been a smooth road?
I’ve dealt with many challenges along the way. One of the biggest ones was figuring out how to make a living without giving up my passion. I encountered a lot of people along my journey who encouraged me to pursue something more “practical.” I think a lot of messaging out there right now makes it seem like pursuing a STEM career is the only way to be successful. I definitely internalized a lot of that, and it made it hard for me to see the value of my talents. I think the STEM movement is great, and I agree that more women should pursue careers in those areas, but I think young women should also know that it’s okay if you want to be a writer or an artist. You’re not destined to be a starving artist.
I always tell any young writers that I meet to consider learning more about digital marketing. The Internet needs writers. Companies need writers to write their website content, social media posts, video scripts, and more. For those who enjoy the visual arts, the Internet needs graphic designers as well. It’s a lot easier to earn a living as a creative these days. You don’t have to give up your passion in the name of practicality. Although I’m not currently making a living from my creative stories and poetry, my flexible schedule as a freelance writer gives me time to work on creative projects and attend open mic nights. I love the fact that I get to write all day, every day!
Please tell us more about your work, what you are currently focused on and most proud of.
As a freelancer, I write marketing content for health and wellness brands. I write SEO website content, blog posts, whitepapers, and social media posts. I ended up developing an interest in this niche because, during my year of unemployment, I was depressed and gained a lot of weight. Over the past three years, I’ve dedicated myself to improving my health, and I’ve lost over 30 pounds. During this journey, I consumed a lot of health and fitness related content, so I ended up learning a lot about not only weight loss and nutrition, but also mental health and alternative medicine. I like to think that the content that I’m creating is helping people who are in the position that I was in a few years ago.
What advice would you give to someone at the start of her career?
Believe in yourself and believe in your talents. Even if what you want to pursue seems impractical or out of reach, you can achieve it if you trust the process and stay the course.
- Content Writing Services starting at $200
- Website: www.kendriawrites.com
- Phone: (470) 231-5778
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: www.instagram.com/kendriawrites
- Facebook: www.facebook.com/kendriawrites
- Twitter: www.twitter.com/kendriawrites
- Other: www.linkedin.com/in/kendriapatterson