A LITTLE BIT ABOUT SAHIL: Sahil is an Oscar-winning writer and actor (give it a few years, will ya) from Southern California. A USC alumni, she spent half a decade in Los Angeles, but eventually got tired of the perfect weather, excellent Mexican food and sunshine—so naturally, she figured frigid winters and soggy, humid summers would be a good change of pace. She loves being Kworq’s favorite (& only) writer and wants to give a special thanks to 1. her German Shepherd, Forrest, 2. Gabriela’s stunning portrait photography, and 3. Mission Impossible: Fallout for being the best movie ever.
What’s your role at Kworq? How long have you been here?
I’m a copywriter/scriptwriter & I’ve been at Kworq almost 1 ½ years.
What attracted you to this role at Kworq vs any other agency?
I really enjoyed their portfolio of ad campaigns and scripted commercials. I thought they were innovative, unique, exciting and that the company itself had a great sense of humor. I specifically recall a Rapunzel-esque sketch for a Sugar Bear Hair commercial series —it was perfectly ridiculous. I’m a very creative person so naturally I’m attracted to work that’s bold, boundary-pushing, and ultimately fun.
Where is your portrait taken? Why this place? What’s the significance?
Aside from its quintessential ‘NYC’ vibe, this neighborhood holds a special place in my heart. I moved to New York in 2019 and knew practically no one. I had a small part-time gig here in Soho but it was unfulfilling and I remember walking these streets, wishing I was surrounded by great friends, fulfilling work, creative collaborators and a stable income. Kworq hired me during Covid-quarantine, so when I finally moved back to the city and came to our office here in Soho—it was surreal to find that my wishes were suddenly realized. I wanted to honor this little corner of NYC because it’s truly a testament to my core belief that anything is possible if you believe in your vision.
Why’d you choose to go into the Advertising and Marketing industry?
It kind of found me. I’m an actor/writer/filmmaker as well so I’ve always been more creatively-inclined. Over the years, copywriting became a fun hobby I’d do to help boost my friends’ businesses and side projects by revamping their website, creating their flyers and writing their sales copy. Then I found myself copywriting for different brands and companies all over the country and one day I got an invitation to apply to Kworq as a copywriter/scriptwriter — and it felt like the missing puzzle piece almost. I fit right in.
What’s the coolest part about working in advertising?
I love that we can still be professionals without the strict structure of a conventionally professional environment. At least here, we’re encouraged to embrace our unique individuality, our sense of humor, and be curious, because ultimately it’s the “understanding people” element that advertising requires to be successful. So the better we get to know ourselves and the different folks around us, the better we are at our jobs. I also love learning about the industries our various clients are in and what happens behind-the-scenes— I really feel it expands my knowledge of the world and as nerdy as it sounds, I love learning new things.
What’s the uncoolest part about working advertising?
Hahaaaa—rounds of revision. It’s tough because it’s only through revisions that we get better and better results, but there’s nothing more frustrating than when I think I’ve hit the mark and that a script or deliverable is the best I can do,but the client wants better. Going back to the drawing board can sometimes feel like a huge challenge or hurdle but it’s ultimately rewarding and necessary, so I’m grateful for it. (See how I spun this in a positive light? Making the industry proud.)
What’s an unexpected perk of working at an agency like Kworq in this industry?
So many perks, but the top 2 would be 1) the people and 2) working remote. I genuinely love every single one of my coworkers (a few of them are now my #besties) so I feel spoiled because it feels like I’m just going to work with all my friends every day. Secondly, working remote is such a blessing. I’m also currently enrolled in grad school at Columbia, so I feel incredibly privileged and lucky to have such a fulfilling job with the flexibility of working remotely.
What are some challenges of the business?
Getting to the core of a client’s creative vision. I feel like once you’ve dug deep and hit that core, where everything else springs from, it’s easier to execute the work from thereon. But it definitely takes a bit of research, a few conversations and a lot of brainstorming to hit the mark. And even then — it’s not always a homerun. That’s where perseverance and resilience come in handy.
What’s something new you learned since working at Kworq? Doesn’t have to be work related. Could be silly, informative, fun, useful, a life skill, etc.
That now that I’m a resident New Yorker, I have to worry about cicadas and roaches FAR more than I’ve ever had to before in my life.
What’s life look like for you in 5 years? Screw reality, what’s the “if I won the lottery” answer?
Oh, finally. Glad you asked. I’ll have an Oscar, be on an episode or two of Succession, be making movies with Taika Waititi, writing lots of cool, culture-defining scripts, traveling the world with my family/friends, being besties with Jack Harlow and living in a dope, bug-free, 2 bedroom NYC apartment with an envy-inducing view.
What inspires you in your work?
The incessant push to craft or brainstorm innovative concepts, new creative, or clever messaging that feeds into compelling storytelling. Not saying I’m always successful, but the pursuit of it makes me a better writer. That “it’s gotta get done, hell or high water” mindset really does something great for your potential.
How do you stay creative outside of the Kworq offices?
Experiencing other artists’ work inspires me more than anything. So in addition to being an actor and a writer, I’m constantly listening to music, watching movies, seeing theater, and reading books. Oh and cold brew — cold brew activates my creative third eye.
All photography by Gabriela Della Corna.
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Also published on Medium.