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Working As an Entertainment Writer

  • Interacting With Computers
  • Getting Information
  • Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events
  • Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • Mostly Sitting

  • Repetitive

  • Stressful

  • $52,000

    Average Salary

What Does An Entertainment Writer Do

Technical writers, also called technical communicators, prepare instruction manuals, how-to guides, journal articles, and other supporting documents to communicate complex and technical information more easily. They also develop, gather, and disseminate technical information through an organization’s communications channels.

Duties

Technical writers typically do the following:

  • Determine the needs of users of technical documentation
  • Study product samples and talk with product designers and developers
  • Work with technical staff to make products easier to use and thus require fewer instructions
  • Organize and write supporting content for products
  • Use photographs, drawings, diagrams, animation, and charts that increase users’ understanding
  • Select appropriate medium for message or audience, such as manuals or online videos
  • Standardize content across platforms and media
  • Gather user feedback to update and improve content
  • Revise content as new issues arise

Technical writers create paper-based and digital operating instructions, how-to manuals, assembly instructions, and “frequently asked questions” pages to help technical support staff, consumers, and other users within a company or an industry. After a product is released, technical writers also may work with product liability specialists and customer-service managers to improve the end-user experience through product design changes.

Technical writers often work with computer hardware engineers, scientists, computer support specialists, and software developers to manage the flow of information among project workgroups during development and testing. Therefore, technical writers must be able to understand complex information and communicate the information to people with diverse professional backgrounds.

Applying their knowledge of the user of the product, technical writers may serve as part of a team conducting usability studies to help improve the design of a product that is in the prototype stage. Technical writers may conduct research on their topics through personal observation, library and Internet research, and discussions with technical specialists.

Technical writers are also responsible for managing the consistency of technical content and its use across business departments including product development, manufacturing, marketing, and customer relations.

Some technical writers help write grant proposals for research scientists and institutions.

Increasingly, technical information is being delivered online and through social media. Technical writers are using the interactive technologies of the Web and social media to blend text, graphics, multidimensional images, sound, and video.

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How To Become An Entertainment Writer

A college degree is usually required for a position as a technical writer. In addition, experience with a technical subject, such as computer science, Web design, or engineering, is important.

Education

Employers generally prefer candidates with a bachelor’s degree in journalism, English, or communications. Many technical writing jobs require both a degree and knowledge in a specialized field, such as engineering, computer science, or medicine. Web design experience also is helpful because of the growing use of online technical documentation.

Work Experience in a Related Occupation

Some technical writers begin their careers as specialists or research assistants in a technical field. They eventually develop technical communication skills and assume primary responsibilities for technical writing. In small firms, beginning technical writers may work on projects right away; in larger companies with more standard procedures, beginners may observe experienced technical writers and interact with specialists before being assigned projects.

Training

Many technical writers need short-term on-the-job training to adapt to a different style of writing.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

Some associations, including the Society for Technical Communication, offer certification for technical writers. In addition, the American Medical Writers Association offers extensive continuing education programs and certificates in medical writing. These certificates are available to professionals in the medical and allied scientific communication fields.

Although not mandatory, certification can demonstrate competence and professionalism, making candidates more attractive to employers. It can also increase a technical writer’s opportunities for advancement.

Advancement

Prospects for advancement generally include working on more complex projects and leading or training junior staff. Some technical writers become self-employed and produce work on a freelance basis.

Important Qualities

Communication skills. Technical writers must be able to take complex, technical information and translate it for colleagues and consumers who have nontechnical backgrounds.

Detail oriented. Technical writers create detailed instructions for others to follow. As a result, they must be detailed and precise at every step so that the instructions can be useful.

Imagination. Technical writers must be able to think about a procedure or product in the way a person without technical experience would think about it.

Teamwork. Technical writers must be able to work well with others. They are almost always part of a team: with other writers; with designers, editors, and illustrators; and with the technical people whose information they are explaining.

Technical skills. Technical writers must be able to understand highly complex information. Many technical writers need a background in engineering or computer science in order to do this.

Writing skills. Technical communicators must have excellent writing skills to be able to explain technical information clearly.

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Entertainment Writer Career Paths

Entertainment Writer
Writer Editor Consultant
Marketing Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Writer Editor Owner
Creative Director
5 Yearsyrs
Writer Consultant Marketing Manager
Marketing Communications Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Writer And Editor Consultant Marketing Manager
Marketing Vice President
10 Yearsyrs
Writer And Editor Editor Owner
Communications Director
6 Yearsyrs
Writer And Editor Executive Assistant Marketing Manager
Digital Marketing Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Reporter Account Executive Owner
Owner And Founder
6 Yearsyrs
Reporter Managing Editor Communications Manager
Director Of Communications And Marketing
9 Yearsyrs
Reporter Account Executive Vice President, Business Development
President And Founder
5 Yearsyrs
Contributing Writer Social Media Manager Marketing Director
Chief Marketing Officer
10 Yearsyrs
Contributing Writer Founder Marketing Director
Director Of Marketing And Public Relations
6 Yearsyrs
Contributing Writer Technical Writer Web Developer
Web Content Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Copy Editor Communications Specialist Staff Writer
Public Information Officer
6 Yearsyrs
Copy Editor Technical Writer Marketing Communications Manager
Content Marketing Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Copy Editor Managing Editor
Publications Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Staff Writer Social Media Manager
Strategist
6 Yearsyrs
Staff Writer Manager Business Owner
Entrepreneur
5 Yearsyrs
Assistant Editor Managing Editor Content Manager
Content Director
7 Yearsyrs
Assistant Editor Communications Specialist Public Relations Specialist
Media Relations Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Assistant Editor Technical Writer Content Manager
Digital Content Manager
5 Yearsyrs
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Do you work as an Entertainment Writer?

Top Skills for An Entertainment Writer

  1. News Stories
  2. Local Arts
  3. Movie Reviews
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Conducted interviews and research and developed sources to write clear and concise news stories.
  • Reported on local arts and entertainment events as needed.
  • Interview and photograph Celebrity Feature Story selections for LIPSTIK Magazine, 618 and PRIME LIFE Publications & MATINEE MAVEN Movie reviews
  • Demonstrated knowledge and expertise in the areas of TV, movies, music, trends and other elements of pop culture.
  • Write and publish featured editorials on various events including musical performances, celebrity interviews, dining, and other current events.

Entertainment Writer Demographics

Gender

Female

48.5%

Male

40.3%

Unknown

11.2%
Ethnicity

White

60.6%

Hispanic or Latino

17.9%

Black or African American

11.2%

Asian

6.4%

Unknown

3.8%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

52.9%

French

14.7%

German

5.9%

Russian

5.9%

Korean

5.9%

Chinese

2.9%

Mandarin

2.9%

Greek

2.9%

Japanese

2.9%

Urdu

2.9%
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Entertainment Writer Education

Schools

Northwestern University

8.3%

Hofstra University

7.3%

New York University

6.3%

University of California - Los Angeles

6.3%

University of North Texas

6.3%

Syracuse University

5.2%

Grand Valley State University

5.2%

West Virginia University

5.2%

Michigan State University

5.2%

University of Texas at Austin

5.2%

Saint Edward's University

4.2%

Southern Methodist University

4.2%

Temple University

4.2%

University of Tennessee - Knoxville

4.2%

University of Southern California

4.2%

University of Miami

4.2%

Case Western Reserve University

4.2%

Florida State University

4.2%

University of Florida

3.1%

Emerson College

3.1%
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Majors

Journalism

23.8%

Communication

20.3%

English

15.0%

Writing

6.5%

Photography

5.3%

Business

3.8%

Public Relations

3.3%

Agricultural Public Services

3.3%

Theatre

2.3%

General Education, Specific Areas

2.0%

Journalism And Mass Communications

2.0%

History

2.0%

Music

1.5%

Political Science

1.5%

Psychology

1.5%

Marketing

1.5%

Entertainment Business

1.3%

Fine Arts

1.3%

Sociology

1.3%

Publishing

1.0%
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Degrees

Bachelors

70.9%

Masters

14.5%

Other

11.9%

Associate

1.7%

Certificate

0.8%

Diploma

0.2%
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Updated May 19, 2020