On the recommendation of Russell, I've been reading 'Murder Must Advertise', the 1933 novel by Dorothy L Sayers.

The plot features a mega-posh amateur detective called Lord Peter Wimsey, who goes undercover in an ad agency after one of the creatives gets murdered.

As one might expect, he finds copywriting terribly easy, and they're rather sorry to see him go once he's solved the murder. (I won't bore you with the details of the actual crime, or the laughable sub-plot concerning advertisement headlines being used as code for a gang of drug dealers).

But Sayers herself worked as a copywriter for seven years, and I was curious to see if any of the ad stuff would resonate today.

It does. Here are the words of warning that creative director Mr Hankin gives Lord Peter on his first day at the agency: "You'll soon find that the biggest obstacle to good advertising is the client."

1933, folks.

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