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Become A City Editor

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Working As A City Editor

  • Getting Information
  • Interacting With Computers
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • Thinking Creatively
  • Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships
  • Mostly Sitting

  • Make Decisions

  • Repetitive

  • Stressful

  • $73,000

    Average Salary

What Does A City Editor Do

Editors plan, review, and revise content for publication.

Duties

Editors typically do the following:

  • Read content and correct spelling, punctuation, and grammatical errors
  • Rewrite text to make it easier for readers to understand
  • Verify facts using standard reference sources
  • Evaluate submissions from writers to decide what to publish
  • Work with writers to help their ideas and stories succeed
  • Develop story and content ideas according to the publication’s style and editorial policy
  • Allocate space for the text, photos, and illustrations that make up a story
  • Approve final versions submitted by staff

Editors plan, coordinate, and revise material for publication in books, newspapers, magazines, or websites. Editors review story ideas and decide what material will appeal most to readers. During the review process, editors offer comments to improve the product, and suggest titles and headlines. In smaller organizations, a single editor may perform all of the editorial duties or share them with only a few other people.

The following are examples of types of editors:

Copy editors review text for errors in grammar, punctuation, and spelling and check for readability, style, and agreement with editorial policy. They suggest revisions, such as changing words and rearranging sentences and paragraphs to improve clarity or accuracy. They also may carry out research, confirm sources for writers, and verify facts, dates, and statistics. In addition, they may arrange page layouts of articles, photographs, and advertising.

Publication assistants who work for book-publishing houses may read and evaluate manuscripts submitted by freelance writers, proofread uncorrected drafts, and answer questions about published material. Assistants on small newspapers or in smaller media markets may compile articles available from wire services or the Internet, answer phones, and proofread articles.

Assistant editors are responsible for a particular subject, such as local news, international news, feature stories, or sports. Most assistant editors work for newspaper publishers, television broadcasters, magazines, book publishers, or advertising and public relations firms.

Executive editors oversee assistant editors and generally have the final say about what stories are published and how they are covered. Executive editors typically hire writers, reporters, and other employees. They also plan budgets and negotiate contracts with freelance writers, who are sometimes called “stringers” in the news industry. Although many executive editors work for newspaper publishers, some work for television broadcasters, magazines, or advertising and public relations firms.

Managing editors typically work for magazines, newspaper publishers, and television broadcasters, and are responsible for the daily operations of a news department.

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How To Become A City Editor

A bachelor’s degree in communications, journalism, or English, combined with previous writing and proofreading experience, is typically required to be an editor.

Education

Employers generally prefer candidates with a bachelor’s degree in communications, journalism, or English. They also prefer candidates with mass- or cross-media experience.

Those with other backgrounds who can show strong writing skills also may find jobs as editors. Editors who deal with specific subject matter may need previous related work experience. For example, fashion editors may need expertise in fashion that they gain through formal training or work experience.

Work Experience in a Related Occupation

Many editors start off as editorial assistants, writers, or reporters.

Those who are particularly skilled at identifying good stories, recognizing writing talent, and interacting with writers may be interested in editing jobs. 

Other Experience

Editors also can gain experience by working on high school and college newspapers, and for magazines, radio and television stations, advertising and publishing companies, or nonprofit organizations. Magazines and newspapers also have internships for students. For example, the American Society of Magazine Editors offers a Magazine Internship Program to qualified full-time students in their junior or senior year of college. Interns may write stories, conduct research and interviews, and gain general publishing experience.

The ability to use computers is necessary for editors to stay in touch with writers and other editors and to work on the increasingly important digital media or online side of a publication. Familiarity with electronic publishing, graphics, Web design, and multimedia production is also important, because more content is being offered online.

Advancement

Some editors hold management positions and must make decisions related to running a business. For them, advancement generally means moving up to publications with larger circulation or greater prestige. Copy editors may move into original writing or substantive editing positions, or become freelancers.

Important Qualities

Creativity. Editors must be creative, curious, and knowledgeable in a broad range of topics. Some editors must regularly come up with interesting story ideas and attention-grabbing headlines.

Detail oriented. One of an editor’s main tasks is to make sure that material is error free and matches the style of a publication.

Good judgment. Editors must decide if certain stories are ethical or if there is enough evidence to report them.

Interpersonal skills. In working with writers, editors must have tact and the ability to guide and encourage them in their work.

Writing skills. Editors must ensure that all written content has correct grammar, punctuation, and syntax. Editors must be able to write clearly and logically.

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City Editor Career Paths

City Editor
Editor Owner Communications Director
Director Of Public Affairs
7 Yearsyrs
Editor Public Relations Manager Manager Of Corporate Communications
Director, Corporate Communications
10 Yearsyrs
Editor Owner Marketing Director
Vice President Of Marketing & Communications
12 Yearsyrs
Reporter Technical Writer Web Developer
Web Content Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Reporter Managing Editor Communications Manager
Internal Communications Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Managing Editor Communications Manager Public Relations Director
Media Relations Director
5 Yearsyrs
Reporter Public Relations Specialist Communications Manager
Communications Project Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Copy Editor Writer And Editor Staff Writer
Public Information Officer
6 Yearsyrs
Managing Editor Marketing Manager Marketing Manager/Project Manager
Digital Project Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Copy Editor Technical Writer Marketing Communications Manager
Content Marketing Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Copy Editor Technical Writer Content Manager
Senior Content Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Writer And Editor Marketing Specialist Digital Marketing Specialist
Online Marketing Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Writer And Editor Technical Writer And Editor Senior Technical Writer
Publications Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Staff Writer Senior Editor Content Manager
Content Director
7 Yearsyrs
Staff Writer Public Relations Specialist
Media Relations Manager
5 Yearsyrs
News Editor Senior Editor Content Manager
Digital Content Manager
5 Yearsyrs
News Editor Producer Social Media Manager
Manager Of Digital Media
5 Yearsyrs
News Editor Senior Editor
Bureau Chief
7 Yearsyrs
Assistant Editor Producer Social Media Manager
Marketing Strategist
6 Yearsyrs
Assistant Editor Content Writer Social Media Manager
Digital Communications Manager
5 Yearsyrs
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Top Skills for A City Editor

  1. Staff Reporters
  2. News Stories
  3. Daily Paper
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Supervised and edited staff reporters and other editors on deadline as they published the next day's edition.
  • Confer with management and editorial staff members regarding placement and emphasis of developing news stories.
  • Helped reporters increase coverage in their beat areas, edited stories, managed the production of the daily paper each evening.
  • Managed editorial staff and directed evening and primetime newsroom operation.
  • Manage the online community through community-based tools.

City Editor Demographics

Gender

Male

53.8%

Female

39.3%

Unknown

6.8%
Ethnicity

White

64.9%

Hispanic or Latino

13.8%

Black or African American

11.0%

Asian

6.8%

Unknown

3.5%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

56.0%

French

16.0%

German

8.0%

Yoruba

4.0%

Czech

4.0%

Hindi

4.0%

Russian

4.0%

Italian

4.0%
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City Editor Education

Schools

University of Missouri - Columbia

12.3%

University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

9.0%

Temple University

5.8%

New York University

5.2%

Ohio State University

5.2%

Michigan State University

5.2%

University of Texas at Austin

5.2%

San Francisco State University

5.2%

University of Georgia

5.2%

Ohio University -

4.5%

Arizona State University

4.5%

West Virginia University

4.5%

Boston University

3.9%

Columbia University

3.9%

Purdue University

3.9%

University of Kansas

3.9%

Northern Arizona University

3.2%

American University

3.2%

University of Wisconsin Extension

3.2%

Pennsylvania State University

3.2%
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Majors

Journalism

43.1%

Communication

12.6%

English

10.6%

Political Science

6.7%

Agricultural Public Services

3.7%

Writing

3.3%

Business

2.2%

History

2.2%

Education

2.0%

Journalism And Mass Communications

1.9%

Law

1.7%

Management

1.3%

Public Administration

1.3%

Liberal Arts

1.3%

Photography

1.1%

General Education, Specific Areas

1.1%

Public Relations

1.1%

Sociology

0.9%

Psychology

0.9%

Elementary Education

0.9%
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Degrees

Bachelors

62.3%

Masters

20.2%

Other

12.6%

Doctorate

2.1%

Associate

1.2%

Certificate

1.1%

Diploma

0.3%

License

0.2%
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