How to Become a Professional Writer

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Becoming a professional writer can involve learning skills such as composition, researching, and reporting. Writers often work on deadlines, which requires that they perform well under pressure and that they keep to a tight schedule.[1] Many writers are freelancers, working for several clients or customers, but some are employed by companies that assign them to cover specific subjects. According to the Bureau of Labor and Statistics, the number of open positions for professional writers and authors will increase by about six percent over the next decade.[2]

Wikimedia Commons: Dake
Education Bachelor degree[2]
Starting pay $28,610[3]
Median pay $55,420[3]
10 yr growth Slower than average: 6%[2]
Related professions Freelance writer, travel writer
Author Selena Robinson

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Professional Writer Job Overview

A professional writer earns money by writing original content for clients. Writers can cover a variety of topics, including nutrition, travel, entertainment, news, and fiction. Still other writers earn money as authors, which means that they write books for purchase by the public. Authors may create fiction or non-fiction books about subjects such as history, education, music, or humor.[4]

Jobs for Freelance Writers

Many professional writers are freelance writers, which means that they are self-employed. They often receive assignments based on their experience or expertise in a certain industry. Some writers work for customers or companies that assign them to cover specific topics or titles. Other writers submit original content and articles to written or web-based publications, such as magazines, catalogs, and blogs.[5]

Professional Writer Education

The majority of professional writers have completed a college education, during which they take courses that are designed to improve their mastery of written English. Such classes might include English composition, communications, public speaking, creative writing, journalism, and literature.[6] However, some writers are able to begin a career in this field without having completed any formal writing classes beyond high school.[7]

Professional Writer Training

Even though an advanced degree is not required for many writing jobs, some professional writers choose to obtain a master's degree in order to gain access to more opportunities for work. Depending on their specific industry, a degree in a related field can help a writer to cover his or her topics more effectively. For example, a financial writer who obtains a degree in Finance or Accounting may find it easier to land work with larger, more established companies.[8]

Writing Career Tips

Tips for maintaining passion in a writing career

Also See: How to Become a Speech Writer, How to Become a Comedy Writer, How to Become a Closed Caption Writer, How to Become a Music Writer, How to Become a Syndicated Writer, How to Become a Technical Writer, How to Become a Grant Writer, How to Become a Travel Writer, How to Become a Freelance Writer, How to Become a Food Writer, How to Become an Author


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