The world is your oyster when you're a creative writer! Through the power of your imagination and your words, you can forge your career path in a variety of industries while doing a job many people only dream of.

Creative writers are not just stuffy academics in tweed and turtlenecks that write poetry and lecture about postmodernism. You can work in the film or television industry writing scripts. You could also work for a private business writing copy for their social media, ad campaigns, and more. If you've ever had an ad slogan stuck in your head, chances are there was a skillful, creative writer behind it.

Since there are so many different ways to work as a creative writer, naturally, there are also many different paths to become one in the first place. You could get a bachelor's or master's degree in English or a related field. Professional experience is also important-you could dedicate time to building a portfolio that will wow potential employers with your words.

What Does a Creative Writer Do

There are certain skills that many creative writers have in order to accomplish their responsibilities. By taking a look through resumes, we were able to narrow down the most common skills for a person in this position. We discovered that a lot of resumes listed social perceptiveness, creativity and writing skills.

Learn more about what a Creative Writer does

How To Become a Creative Writer

If you're interested in becoming a creative writer, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. We've determined that 72.9% of creative writers have a bachelor's degree. In terms of higher education levels, we found that 8.9% of creative writers have master's degrees. Even though most creative writers have a college degree, it's possible to become one with only a high school degree or GED.

Creative Writer Career Paths

Average Salary for a Creative Writer

Creative Writers in America make an average salary of $73,095 per year or $35 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $114,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $46,000 per year.
Average Creative Writer Salary
$73,095 Yearly
$35.14 hourly
$46,000
10 %
$73,000
Median
$114,000
90 %

What Am I Worth?

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How To Become a Creative Writer
How To Become a Creative Writer Career Overview

States With The Most Creative Writer Jobs

Mouse over a state to see the number of active creative writer jobs in each state. The darker areas on the map show where creative writers earn the highest salaries across all 50 states.

Average Salary: Job Openings:

Number Of Creative Writer Jobs By State

RankStateNumber of JobsAverage Salary
1California1,344$98,653
2New York1,005$85,943
3Texas520$64,176
4Virginia452$81,021
5Massachusetts403$90,264
6Illinois400$64,947
7Florida399$58,694
8Maryland358$80,303
9North Carolina292$70,488
10Pennsylvania285$91,192
11New Jersey275$96,826
12Washington274$88,432
13Georgia227$63,270
14Oregon220$68,687
15Ohio180$69,660
16Minnesota180$66,805
17Michigan173$61,318
18Colorado167$75,085
19Missouri150$57,130
20Arizona132$58,958
21Utah127$80,782
22Wisconsin124$90,580
23Indiana116$90,322
24Tennessee116$53,080
25Connecticut93$87,689
26Nevada78$79,446
27Nebraska78$77,383
28South Carolina73$61,561
29Alabama70$66,713
30Kansas62$54,681
31Iowa60$58,594
32Kentucky59$69,341
33Oklahoma58$63,017
34Arkansas52$61,607
35New Mexico50$70,034
36New Hampshire47$72,546
37Idaho46$84,629
38Rhode Island42$79,056
39Wyoming39$60,184
40Louisiana39$66,733
41Delaware38$81,351
42Montana37$64,241
43Vermont36$79,627
44Alaska34$69,311
45West Virginia31$74,609
46Mississippi30$76,568
47North Dakota27$78,480
48Hawaii26$42,118
49Maine21$80,570
50South Dakota21$66,000

Creative Writer Education

Creative Writer Majors

20.4 %
10.1 %

Creative Writer Degrees

Bachelors

72.9 %

Associate

9.9 %

Masters

8.9 %

Top Colleges for Creative Writers

1. Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Cambridge, MA • Private

In-State Tuition
$51,832
Enrollment
4,550

2. Harvard University

Cambridge, MA • Private

In-State Tuition
$50,420
Enrollment
7,582

3. Northwestern University

Evanston, IL • Private

In-State Tuition
$54,568
Enrollment
8,451

4. Columbia University in the City of New York

New York, NY • Private

In-State Tuition
$59,430
Enrollment
8,216

5. University of California, Berkeley

Berkeley, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$14,184
Enrollment
30,845

6. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Chapel Hill, NC • Private

In-State Tuition
$8,987
Enrollment
18,946

7. California Polytechnic State University-San Luis Obispo

San Luis Obispo, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$9,816
Enrollment
21,047

8. University of Southern California

Los Angeles, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$56,225
Enrollment
19,548

9. Emory University

Atlanta, GA • Private

In-State Tuition
$51,306
Enrollment
6,975

10. University of Texas at Austin

Austin, TX • Private

In-State Tuition
$10,610
Enrollment
40,329

Top Skills For a Creative Writer

The skills section on your resume can be almost as important as the experience section, so you want it to be an accurate portrayal of what you can do. Luckily, we've found all of the skills you'll need so even if you don't have these skills yet, you know what you need to work on. Out of all the resumes we looked through, 17.1% of creative writers listed digital marketing on their resume, but soft skills such as social perceptiveness and creativity are important as well.

  • Digital Marketing, 17.1%
  • Proofreading, 15.3%
  • Email Campaigns, 10.8%
  • Video Scripts, 6.0%
  • Web Content, 5.1%
  • Other Skills, 45.7%

Choose From 10+ Customizable Creative Writer Resume templates

Zippia allows you to choose from different easy-to-use Creative Writer templates, and provides you with expert advice. Using the templates, you can rest assured that the structure and format of your Creative Writer resume is top notch. Choose a template with the colors, fonts & text sizes that are appropriate for your industry.

Creative Writer Resume
Creative Writer Resume
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Creative Writer Resume
Creative Writer Resume

Creative Writer Demographics

Creative Writer Gender Distribution

Female
Female
54%
Male
Male
46%

After extensive research and analysis, Zippia's data science team found that:

  • Among creative writers, 54.2% of them are women, while 45.8% are men.

  • The most common race/ethnicity among creative writers is White, which makes up 79.5% of all creative writers.

  • The most common foreign language among creative writers is Spanish at 30.3%.

Work Experience Programs For Creative Writers

Virtual work experience programs replicate work at top companies and help you gain the skills to be successful when applying and working there. In only a few hours, learn the relevant tools necessary to complete a typical work day at that company. Virtual work experience programs are 100% free, open-access, and self-paced. No experience or application is required!

Globally Responsible Engineering Program

Company: Engineers Without Borders UK

Cost: Free

Duration: 5-6 hours

Product Design Program

Company: Accenture North America

Cost: Free

Duration: 4 hours

Software Engineering Program

Company: J.P. Morgan

Cost: Free

Duration: 5 hours

Software Engineering Program

Company: Electronic Arts

Cost: Free

Duration: 4-6 hours

Working at a Start Up Program

Company: Y Combinator

Cost: Free

Duration: 5-6 hours

Online Courses For Creative Writer That You May Like

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Creativity Course by a Creativity Coach Art & Innovation
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Creativity & Innovation for Innovators, Artists, Entrepreneurs, Writers, & Students - By a Professional Creativity Coach...

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Learn to write engaging Fiction, Poetry, Drama, & Creative Non-Fiction and become the successful writer you want to be...

Creative Writing For Beginners - Writing Creative Prose
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Creative Writing For Beginners: Beginners Creative Writing Tips: Creative Writing: Writing Creative Prose - Beginners...

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Best States For a Creative Writer

Some places are better than others when it comes to starting a career as a creative writer. The best states for people in this position are California, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin. Creative writers make the most in California with an average salary of $98,653. Whereas in New Jersey and Pennsylvania, they would average $96,826 and $91,192, respectively. While creative writers would only make an average of $90,580 in Wisconsin, you would still make more there than in the rest of the country. We determined these as the best states based on job availability and pay. By finding the median salary, cost of living, and using the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Location Quotient, we narrowed down our list of states to these four.

1. California

Total Creative Writer Jobs:
1,344
Highest 10% Earn:
$169,000
Location Quotient:
1.4

2. New Jersey

Total Creative Writer Jobs:
275
Highest 10% Earn:
$163,000
Location Quotient:
1.06

3. District of Columbia

Total Creative Writer Jobs:
211
Highest 10% Earn:
$165,000
Location Quotient:
3.83
Full List Of Best States For Creative Writers

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Top Creative Writer Employers

Most Common Employers For Creative Writer

RankCompanyAverage SalaryHourly RateJob Openings
1Meta$126,107$60.635
2Squarespace$120,901$58.134
3Fiverr$115,358$55.464
4Talk Fusion$98,654$47.433
5Sports Events 365$96,170$46.242
6NBCUniversal$92,535$44.492
7Design Option$89,844$43.192
8POET$86,642$41.652
9Opus Broadcasting$80,847$38.872
10KPMG LLP$77,488$37.257

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