Outside of the few writers who make it big with a New York Times bestseller or an award-winning screenplay, most people don’t consider writing to be a lucrative career path. And, as a result of the “starving artist” stereotype, many people believe they must choose between their passion for writing and a stable, profitable career. But the truth is that there are plenty of well-paying writing jobs out there; you just have to know where to look. If you enjoy writing, we’ve compiled a list of high-paying jobs for writers to consider.
For this article, we define a high-paying job as one with an average salary that is higher than the median salary for all occupations in the United States, which was $41,950 in May 2020, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. In many cases, the salary range and higher-level roles along the same path mean that your long-term earning potential is even higher.
Top Paying Jobs For Writers in 2022
If you’re a writer with a knack for language, the ability to correct spelling and grammatical errors, and the ability to engage diverse audiences, there are numerous professional roles you can pursue in a variety of fields. Aside from becoming a professional writer, you can also work in marketing, education, media, and communications. Here are 20 jobs for writers to help you find the best fit for your skills and goals.
It is an editor’s responsibility to supervise a piece of writing from conception to publication. This can include honing the structure of a thesis; ensuring the facts are accurate and from credible sources; eliminating unnecessary sentences or paragraphs, making suggestions about how to improve the writing while calling out inconsistencies in tonality; and correcting grammatical mistakes.
Editors can work for book publishers, media companies, magazines, newspapers, and brands (where they would edit the company’s website or other content). Editors must be well-versed in all aspects of writing, including grammar, style, narrative, and structure. As a result, the majority of editors are writers or have a degree in a field related to writing (like English or journalism).
The financial opportunities for editorial professionals grow as they advance in their careers, with senior editors earning an average of $69,986 per year and editorial directors earning an average of $94,713 per year. This is one of the best freelance writing jobs from home and among the top paid online writing jobs.
The average salary is $53,520.
Range of pay: $35,000–$83,000
When it comes to developing and executing content for a company, content marketing managers are at the helm. While some content marketing managers specialize in creating and overseeing specific types of content, such as blog posts, ebooks, whitepapers, website content, and social media posts, others take a more generalist approach. While content marketing managers do spend a significant amount of time creating content (including writing), they also spend a significant amount of time on strategy.
Which makes this a great role if you enjoy writing but don’t want to spend all of your time typing. You’ll also have the opportunity to consider the big picture and determine how content can support an organization’s overall mission and goals. Some companies require their content marketing managers to have a degree, but many are more interested in a candidate’s ability to strategize, create, and promote content—so as long as you’re a good writer and understand the fundamentals of content marketing, you’ll have plenty of opportunities.
Content marketing managers can also advance in their careers (and earn a higher salary as a result), with content marketing directors earning an average of $93,400 per year. This is one of the high-paying jobs for writers and among the freelance writing jobs for beginners.
Average annual salary: $68,395
Range of pay: $46,000–$100,000
Communications managers, as the name suggests, are in charge of a company’s communications, both internal and external. Defining and developing the company’s voice, writing internal guides and resources, developing and managing the company’s communication strategy, managing all internal and external communications with clients and customers which includes press releases, and media opportunities in line with the company’s mission and goals are all possible responsibilities.
Because a communication manager is in charge of the company’s communication, there will be a lot of writing and editing. However, there will be a lot of strategic responsibilities such as opportunities to interact with colleagues and external partners. A bachelor’s degree in communications, marketing, or a related field is required to get your foot in the door as a communications manager.
While communications managers demand competitive salaries, financial opportunities will only grow as you advance in your career, with senior communications managers earning an average of $100,520 per year and vice presidents earning an average of $148,870. This is one of the best freelance writing jobs from home and among the top paid online writing jobs.
The average salary is $65,851.
Range of pay: $44,000–$101,000
Technical writers create copy that translates complex technical ideas into something that a general audience can read and understand, such as instruction manuals, tutorials, journal articles, and educational resources. As the title suggests, writing is the most important aspect of any technical writing job. To be successful in this role, you’ll need more than just writing skills; you’ll also need a thorough understanding of technical concepts—as well as the ability to communicate those concepts in nontechnical language.
As a result, technical writers frequently hold a bachelor’s degree in English, communications, journalism, or a related field, as well as background knowledge relevant to the subject matter they’ll be writing about, such as computer science, information technology, scientific research in a specific field, environmental policies, or manufacturing processes (although, depending on the role and company, a degree might not be required to land a job). The average salary for senior technical writers is $84,292. This is one of the high paying jobs for writers and among the freelance writing jobs for beginners.
The average salary is $60,852.
Range of pay: $43,000–$88,000
A medical writer, like a technical writer, takes extremely complex concepts and ideas and translates them into an easier-to-digest copy—the difference is that medical writers specialize in all things healthcare. Medical writers can work in a variety of settings, such as businesses (such as pharmaceutical companies, medical device companies, supplement companies, or health tech startups), medical associations, or healthcare providers. They could be working on a variety of projects, such as medical articles, policy documents, or training and educational materials.
Because medical and scientific knowledge is required for success, most medical writers have a background in biology or other sciences, and some have prior medical experience (for example, as a nurse). However, depending on the role, having excellent research skills and the ability to understand medical concepts and translate them for the target audience may be sufficient. And, while medical writers earn a good starting salary, there is room for advancement, with senior medical writers earning an average of $95,239 per year. This is one of the best freelance writing jobs from home and among the top paid online writing jobs.
The average salary is $72,948.
Range of pay: $55,000–$102,000
Public relations managers (also known as PR managers) are in charge of increasing brand awareness and driving positive brand sentiment for an individual, company, product, or service. They achieve these objectives through a variety of strategies, such as cultivating media relationships, writing press releases, developing and leading consumer-facing campaigns, and mitigating the impact of negative press.
PR managers may work for an independent business (such as a restaurant), a business group or corporation (such as a hotel chain or a book publisher), a nonprofit (such as a food bank), an academic or other institution (such as a university), or an individual (such as a politician, celebrity, or author). While PR managers earn a great average salary, candidates who demonstrate their ability to drive brand awareness and positive press can typically command higher pay packages—and PR directors earn an average of $88,178. This is one of the high paying jobs for writers and among the freelance writing jobs for beginners.
The average salary is $70,255.
Range of pay: $46,000–$101,000
Copywriters are in charge of creating content that persuades readers to act, whether it’s in the form of an advertisement, a website landing page, or a sales letter. Copywriters, in the end, create the content that helps businesses drive sales, making them an extremely valuable asset to businesses looking to engage their customers and move the needle on conversions and revenue. While some companies require copywriters to have a degree, many are more concerned with their ability to write copy that gets results.
While the average copywriter earns a good living, many companies are willing to pay top dollar for results—so if you’re good at writing sales copy, you’ll likely be able to command a higher salary. A senior copywriter, for example, earns an annual salary of $75,689. This is one of the best freelance writing jobs from home and among the top paid online writing jobs.
The average salary is $52,821.
Range of pay: $38,000–$76,000
Research analysts are in charge of gathering, verifying, organizing, and analyzing data to reach key business conclusions and make data-backed recommendations to their employers. Research analysts can be found in a wide range of fields and departments (including finance, marketing, economics, and operations). While data is an important part of a research analyst’s job, another important aspect of their role is sharing their analysis and findings with company stakeholders, which includes writing detailed reports and preparing and delivering presentations.
So, if you want a job that combines your love of research and data with your love of writing, look no further. This could be a fantastic opportunity for you. In general, you’ll need at least a bachelor’s degree to get started as a research analyst, but once you’re in, there’s plenty of room for advancement, with senior research analysts earning an average of $70,169 per year and research directors earning an average of $103,556 per year for those who want to eventually take on more of a leadership role. This is one of the high paying jobs for writers and among the freelance writing jobs for beginners.
Average annual salary: $56,793
Annual salary range: $42,000 – $82,000
Curriculum developers are in charge of conducting research and writing academic, educational, and/or training materials such as textbooks, digital and college course materials (such as outlines and syllabi), and other resources to aid in teaching and/or training. Curriculum developers may work for universities, research institutions, nonprofits, or corporations, depending on the type of curriculum they specialize in.
Most curriculum developers have a bachelor’s degree, excellent research and writing skills, and extensive knowledge in their field of expertise (for example, a curriculum developer writing a math textbook would need to have an in-depth understanding of the subject matter). The next steps in your career could include becoming a training director (average salary $87,540) or curriculum director (average salary $74,513). This is one of the best freelance writing jobs from home and among the top paid online writing jobs.
The average salary is $63,750.
Range of pay: $43,000–$92,000
An English teacher leads a middle or high school class of students, instructing them in critical analysis of literature, reading comprehension, research, and writing. They also proctor exams, assign papers and projects and provide writing feedback to students. Many teaching positions require at least a bachelor’s degree and a teaching license, but these requirements vary by state and employing institution. This is one of the high paying jobs for writers and among the freelance writing jobs for beginners. The average annual salary in the United States is $29,895.
A copy editor’s primary responsibilities include reviewing both short and long-form pieces for content quality, spelling and grammar errors, style, and formatting. They usually work for marketing or advertising departments, publishing firms, or digital and print publications. As a freelancer, some people work for a variety of clients. Getting a copy editor job may only require years of working experience and an impressive portfolio, whereas some employers may request a degree in writing. This is one of the best freelance writing jobs from home and among the top paid online writing jobs. Copy editor: $34,927 per year
A journalist is a professional writer who works for a newspaper, magazine, publishing organization, or digital publication, conducting research on relevant and newsworthy stories, interviewing sources, and reporting on events. They work with editors to revise articles, follow up with sources to update stories, and develop strong relationships with sources and community members.
Aspiring journalists typically need a bachelor’s degree in journalism, communications, or a related field, as well as an article portfolio. This is one of the high-paying jobs for writers and among the freelance writing jobs for beginners. Journalists earn an average of $35,551 per year in the United States.
Bloggers’ primary responsibilities include writing short and long-form articles for digital publications and websites, tailoring each piece to the publication’s target audience, and adhering to SEO principles. Many bloggers write on one or a few related topics and even do so to promote a product, service, or company, whereas others manage and write on their blog on which they place advertisements or partner with relevant companies for advertising opportunities.
Bloggers can typically find work with just a portfolio of work and previous related experience, though some can start their blog and then find clients or professional opportunities. This is one of the high-paying jobs for writers and among the freelance writing jobs for beginners. The national average salary for a blogger is $35,368 per year.
An editorial assistant assists an individual or team of editors with administrative tasks such as handling correspondence, managing calendars, and accompanying editors to meetings. They may be responsible for proofreading, pitching stories, researching art, handling publication rights, and assisting with publication layout in some editorial assistant roles. Some employers may require a bachelor’s degree in English, writing, communications, or a related field.
Other employers may only be looking for administrative experience. This is one of the best freelance writing jobs from home and among the top paid online writing jobs. The national average salary for this position is $40,736 per year.
Social media managers manage an individual’s, organization’s, or business’s social media accounts. They write and edit copy, respond to audience comments and messages, analyze audience engagement and interaction analytics, and create social media campaigns to drive engagement or promote an event or new product. Some employers may prefer candidates with a degree in marketing, communications, or a related field.
They frequently require familiarity with the social media platforms that they use as well. This is one of the high-paying jobs for writers and among the freelance writing jobs for beginners. The national average salary for this position is $44,870 per year.
A filmmaker is a creative professional who focuses on one or more aspects of filmmaking, such as writing, directing, sound design, cinematography, and editing. The specific duties vary depending on the role, but some tasks may include creating a story outline and script, pitching a film idea to producers, directing actors in scenes, and editing clips together to complete the project. Filmmakers can often find work without a degree, though prior experience as a filmmaker or creative writer may be required or at least advantageous to success in the role.
This is one of the best freelance writing jobs from home and among the top paid online writing jobs. The national average salary for a filmmaker: $58,491 per year
A librarian’s primary responsibilities include assisting patrons in finding materials and using research resources, organizing books, periodicals, and other materials, ordering new materials, and supervising library technicians and assistants. They develop programs to engage community members, promote literacy and reading, and educate and train people in a variety of topics and skills, in addition to managing library resources.
Children’s librarians, adult literacy advocates, visual media librarians, research librarians, law librarians, and medical librarians are examples of professionals who can specialize in a branch of library science and work in a corresponding library. Candidates must have a Master of Library Science degree to become a librarian. This is one of the best freelance writing jobs from home and among the top paid online writing jobs. The national average salary for a librarian: $58,529 per year
A writing tutor’s primary responsibilities include assisting writing students and aspiring writers in improving their skills through one-on-one sessions, feedback on pieces, and exercises that practice specific writing techniques and reading comprehension. Depending on where they work, they may interact with young students enrolled in English or language arts classes, college students enrolled in composition courses, or adults and children interested in becoming writers.
A bachelor’s degree in a writing field or previous work experience as a professional writer or teacher may be required for this position. This is one of the high paying jobs for writers and among the freelance writing jobs for beginners. Writing tutors earn an average of $54,658 per year in the United States.
A freelance writer is a professional writer who writes copy for a variety of clients, usually on one or two related topics. They may write articles for a digital publication, blogs for a business or organization, ad copy, social media copy, technical publications, newsletters, or emails, depending on their clients and writing specialty. A degree is not typically required because this is a self-employed position, but experience in marketing, advertising, communications, or a related field can be advantageous.
In addition, having a portfolio of work or a blog that demonstrates your writing abilities is frequently required when looking for clients or employers. This is one of the best freelance writing jobs from home and among the top paid online writing jobs. Freelance writers’ annual salary in the United States is $45,226.
A creative director’s primary responsibilities include leading a creative team in the production of a publication, such as a magazine, newspaper, or digital production. They may be in charge of developing and managing a budget, setting and managing deadlines, approving creative assets and copy, and collaborating with marketing and advertising departments to ensure consistency across a publication.
Employers frequently require many years of relevant experience, a degree, and a portfolio for this position because it is a leadership position. This is one of the high-paying jobs for writers and among the freelance writing jobs for beginners. The national average salary for a creative director: $95,198 per year
Understanding the positions where your creative writing skills can be put to use can help you refine your job search and better showcase your potential. We hope this article has helped you find the best high-paying jobs for writers.
What Are Some Skills Required For High Paying Writing Jobs?
The following jobs necessitate the use of skills that many creative writers possess, such as:
- Reading comprehension
- Knowledge of content styles
- Attention to detail
- Clear communication
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