I've noticed that some of the higher level folk around here have complained on more than one occasion about newbies taking advice but failing to report back on their progress.
(Complain might be too strong a word... substitute with "observe" if you prefer.)
Given that fact, it might be hard to measure the impact of your contributions. Are there newbie copywriters out there hanging on every word you write? Are you helping people?
Are you making a difference in people's lives?
Well, I can't speak for others, but I know that this forum and your input have certainly made a difference in mine.
A little over a year ago, maybe 14 months, I was shoveling rocks for work. Literally shoveling rocks. I had a crappy minimum-wage job at a dangerous factory that was almost certainly illegal. My back ached every day. My bones felt like gravel grinding with every twist of a limb.
I decided I wanted to write for a living. I figured, "Hey, my spelling and grammar are better than these plebs on Facebook!"
I quickly learned the ways writers make money, and naturally gravitated towards the most challenging but rewarding way--writing sales copy.
I devoured podcasts, books and blog posts at a breakneck pace for months. Soon, I managed to talk my way into a three month contract at an advertising agency.
After that was over, I landed my current job--staff copywriter at World Vision Australia.
I started working with my own clients on a freelance basis soon after the role began. Today, I spend about 10 hours a week on freelance work.
My salary is between two and two-and-a-half times as much as it was before I got into writing. Next year, I'm going to make it far greater. My back feels great. Every day I'm intellectually challenged. People view me as articulate, valuable and skillful.
At the factory, I was just a willing spine with a set of tired legs to carry it from shovel to shovel.
Sometimes, when nobody's looking, I take a deep breath and pinch myself--hoping that I don't wake up.
None of it would have been possible without this forum. I've met generous and successful people willing to spare some time to lend me a hand, fellow newbies, and downright lunatics. My attitude and outlook has been transformed simply by observing the way conversations unfold here.
I gained two valuable things: confidence and know-how. These things have allowed me to talk my way into an advertising agency with zero experience, persuade a not-for-profit organisation to choose me over more experienced contenders, and command high (but justified) freelance rates.
Next year, I wanna move into freelancing full time. Given my momentum and progress so far, I have no reason to believe I will fail.