The World According to Renee

Views, Reviews, Short Stories and More…


There’s a billboard ad at my local shopping centre that I just can’t work out. Firstly, it’s for “cookies” (when did biscuits become cookies?) but more importantly, they’re “ready baked”.

Ready baked? Do they mean already baked or ready to eat? It’s a jar of chocolate chip biscuits so I’m guessing it’s not a bake-at-home dough. But “ready baked”? I came to terms with it as I told myself it meant ‘already’ baked and was considering getting a permanent marker to add the ‘al’… when I saw a packet of chips labeled “ready salted”.

Ready salted? That was the last straw. Not only is it not an actual flavour (what happened to Salted or Original?) but I’m wondering if it means it’s salted enough so I don’t need to add any more or is the salt ready to be eaten?

As my brain melted over this wordy dilemma, I asked my boyfriend what his interpretation was. He replied ‘ready’ meant it was ready to go, nothing more needed. I argue that this is pointless, as the packet of chips is clearly good to be eaten and the ready-baked biscuits are cooked, cooled and packaged for you. Are people really that stupid not to recognise ready-to-eat food when they see it? If anything, I’d think the opposite- seeing a piece of fruit in its raw form could lead to questions such as, How do I open this? Where’s my dipping sauce? and I saw this in an ice cream flavour… mmm, ice cream.

Or maybe I’m just overthinking the whole thing.


August 31, 2010 Posted by | Copywriting | Leave a comment

When You Say Nothing At All

I’ve written a lot lately about words during a time of grief. The concensus is you should say something to a grieving person, even though there is no “right words” at a time of profound loss.

But what happens when you’re grieving and someone writes things on a public forum?

Firstly, I need to make a clear difference about forms of grief. Recently, I have written about the grief felt when someone dies. In this post, I talk about grief when a relationship has broken down. It is still a profound sense of loss, but in an entirely different circumstance.

I split from my ex five years ago, when MySpace and facebook were twinkles in their developers’ eyes. I poured out my heart to online friends through other avenues such as forums and MSN chat. In time, I healed.

Now, I have a friend suffering a heartbreak from a broken relationship. Both she and her ex have said what they needed to say via facebook. But does this harm or help? In the song, Black Box by Stan Walker, he sings “If you’ve got something to say, say it to me, not everyone else…” This is so true, especially if you’re proclaiming things on an open avenue where all and sundry can see it. It’s not only rude, it’s disrespectful to the other person and to your entire relationship. What are you hoping to achieve? That your ex, the person you once loved, will hate you enough to never want to see you again?

There’s a fine line that must be trodden when it comes to personal issues on a public forum.  I read a recent article saying facebook was cited in a third of divorces because they’d either found out their partner was cheating or had just decided to leave- and the evidence was on faceboook for all to see.

There may not be any written rules on breakup etiquette, but please keep your private issues private. It just hurts too many people.

August 16, 2010 Posted by | Thoughts & Reflections | Leave a comment


As I buy a second sympathy card in a week, I stand in the post office trying to think of words to write. I’m aware of the irony; my whole life is words and yet they are completely inadequate for some things. How do you express the sadness of someone’s passing? How do you provide comfort for those mourning, especially when you can’t be there?

It was at this moment I felt for the Hallmark writers. I’d spent a few minutes looking through the sympathy cards, trying to find one that wasn’t cliched, religious, schmultzy or just plain crap. I’d settled on a blank card with a lily on the front. Nothing written on the Hallmark cards resonated with me. Yet, here I was staring at the card, wondering what to write.

You’d think these things would come somewhat naturally. Whenever I have something really important to say to someone, I write a letter. I’ve always expressed myself better in writing than speaking. This is why copywriting appeals to me and why people think I’m pretty good at it. Writing is more natural to me than talking (of course, this is probably because I can think what to write and delete when necessary… when talking, it often doesn’t go through the logic centre of my brain first).

What is comes down to is writing from the heart. People will always look past the actual words and see the thought and intent behind it. I’m saddened by recent events of those around me and I hope that whatever words I offer are of some comfort to them.

August 3, 2010 Posted by | Copywriting | Leave a comment