Monday, May 3, 2010

Will Write for Money

Since my newer readers wouldn't have seen this post, I thought I'd re-post it. Here you go.

Have you ever thought of supplementing your income while awaiting the sale of your first novel? Would you like to find a way to write and still earn money during that temporary period? Do you feel freelance writing or journalism are your only options? Note: This isn’t an advertisement.

I came a across a book called “Career Opportunities for Writers” by Rosemary Ellen Guiley and found the information quite interesting. If I wasn’t starting up my own manuscript editing business, maybe I’d consider some of the career options mentioned in this book. After all, writing is writing, right? Well, sort of. I prefer fiction, but could see myself working in a non-fiction writing environment if circumstances were different.

I’ve compiled a list of career opportunities for writers taken from Guiley’s book, but didn’t include the obvious categories like publishing, journalism, or magazines. Take a look.

Television: desk assistant, researcher, reporter, anchor, news writer, assistant news director, news director, news librarian, community-affairs director

Radio: reporter, news director

Arts and Entertainment: ghostwriter, screenwriter, playwright, lyricist/jingle writer, poet, greeting card writer

Business Communications and Public Relations: public-relations assistant, internal publications editor, external publications editor, public information officer, government affairs specialist, speechwriter, communications coordinator, public-relations account executive, technical communicator

Advertising: assistant account executive, account executive, assistant copywriter, copywriter

Federal Government: editorial assistant and clerk, writer and editor, technical writer and editor, press secretary, political speechwriter

Scholastic Academic, and Non-Profit Institutions: journalism teacher, assistant professor, alumni communications specialist, alumni magazine editor, librarian, news director

Freelance Services and Self-Publishing: freelance writer, technical writer, technical editor, copy editor, proofreader, fact checker, indexer, stringer, book reviewer, contributing editor, syndicated columnist, communications consultant, desktop publisher, packager, self-publisher, advertising copywriter

I know, quite the list, but maybe something will interest you enough to do a little research. Of course, the easiest way to find out about these jobs and others like them is to buy Rosemary Ellen Guiley’s book. I did.

Do you have a writing related job? Did any of the job titles in Guiley’s list interest you?


  1. Very detailed list. I'm actually looking at a Marketing Coordinator (writer) job, working for a nonprofit. There are a lot more options out there for writers than we typically think.

  2. Great list - thanks! My mind often flits to trying to get some more income so this is perfect.

  3. Since I consider myself a retired professional tourist, I don’t have another writing related job. That’s a good thing because writing and marketing take up all my time as it is. If I were in the market for a job, I’d probably buy the book because it does list ideas I’d never thought about.

  4. I'm an adjunct assistant professor of math and statistics at two different colleges. I can't wait to make money on writing. I can only view it as a little hobby until such time as I actually produce something worthwhile. The day job takes first priority!

  5. Fantastic list. Sounds like a great book.

  6. Sounds like a great resource - I'll definitely be checking it out! Thanks!

  7. I don't technically have a writing related job, but I'm finding lots of ways I can work writing into my job.

    For example, I have re-written lab manuals for students. I'm currently helping draft a proposal for a new B.Sc. program.

    Someone who can string sentences together in an engaging and clear manner is a useful person to have in a department otherwise full of "capitalization-serves-no-purpose" science geeks.

  8. While in college, my advisor convinced me to not switch my journalism degree emphasis from news writing/mass communications to the super hot field of public relations. The reason: writing will always find you a job. Always.

    And, 20 years removed from this advice I can say he was so very right. I've done everything from newspaper reporting, to medical grant writing, to marketing for an A/E firm, and finally doing in-house publications for a major league baseball team.

    Writing well will always find you a job.

  9. Thanks for the list. I've often thought of freelancing as a copy editor, but haven't looked deep into the opportunities.

  10. I've never considered anything beyond writing, but am trying to set myself up so I can be open to different careers. Its a little scary doing something else though!