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Become A Writer And Editor

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Working As A Writer And 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

  • $46,273

    Average Salary

What Does A Writer And 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 Writer And 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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Writer And Editor Jobs

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Writer And Editor Career Paths

Writer And Editor
Marketing Specialist Marketing Manager Communications Manager
Communications Project Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Senior Technical Writer Senior Writer Managing Editor
Content Director
7 Yearsyrs
Social Media Manager Marketing Consultant Marketing Communications Manager
Content Marketing Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Senior Editor Content Manager
Digital Content Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Communications Consultant Marketing Manager Marketing Manager/Project Manager
Digital Project Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Communications Manager Communications Director
Director, Corporate Communications
10 Yearsyrs
Editor & Producer Freelance Producer
Freelance Project Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Staff Writer Communications Specialist Communications Manager
Internal Communications Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Staff Writer Managing Editor Communications Manager
Manager Of Corporate Communications
7 Yearsyrs
Communications Consultant Communications Manager Social Media Manager
Marketing/Social Media Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Marketing Specialist Public Relations Manager Public Relations Director
Media Relations Director
5 Yearsyrs
Ambassador Program Coordinator Communications Coordinator
Media Relations Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Communications Manager Program Manager Marketing Manager
Online Marketing Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Social Media Manager Marketing Director Public Relations Consultant
Public Information Officer
6 Yearsyrs
Video Editor Producer Managing Editor
Publications Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Senior Writer Communications Manager Content Manager
Senior Content Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Senior Writer Managing Editor Content Manager
Web Content Manager
5 Yearsyrs
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Do you work as a Writer And Editor?

Writer And Editor Demographics

Gender

Female

60.0%

Male

38.2%

Unknown

1.8%
Ethnicity

White

64.2%

Hispanic or Latino

13.4%

Black or African American

11.3%

Asian

7.2%

Unknown

3.8%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

42.7%

French

19.6%

German

7.0%

Italian

5.2%

Japanese

3.8%

Russian

3.5%

Chinese

2.9%

Portuguese

2.8%

Mandarin

2.7%

Arabic

2.7%

Korean

1.2%

Hebrew

1.2%

Hindi

1.0%

Greek

0.8%

Swedish

0.6%

Polish

0.5%

Dutch

0.5%

Turkish

0.4%

Vietnamese

0.4%

Urdu

0.4%
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Writer And Editor Education

Schools

New York University

10.0%

University of Missouri - Columbia

6.3%

Temple University

6.0%

Northwestern University

5.5%

Michigan State University

5.5%

University of Texas at Austin

5.4%

Syracuse University

5.2%

Southern New Hampshire University

5.2%

University of Phoenix

5.1%

University of Iowa

4.9%

Boston University

4.9%

Florida State University

4.3%

Columbia University

4.2%

Pennsylvania State University

4.2%

University of Washington

4.1%

Emerson College

4.1%

University of Florida

3.9%

University of Central Florida

3.8%

University of Oregon

3.7%

American University

3.6%
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Majors

English

21.2%

Journalism

17.5%

Communication

12.1%

Writing

11.2%

Business

4.8%

Psychology

3.2%

Political Science

3.2%

Photography

3.0%

Public Relations

2.9%

History

2.8%

Fine Arts

2.4%

Marketing

2.2%

Agricultural Public Services

2.1%

Liberal Arts

2.0%

Education

2.0%

Law

2.0%

Elementary Education

1.5%

Theatre

1.3%

General Education, Specific Areas

1.3%

Journalism And Mass Communications

1.2%
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Degrees

Bachelors

52.1%

Masters

25.2%

Other

12.4%

Doctorate

3.7%

Certificate

3.3%

Associate

2.9%

Diploma

0.3%

License

0.1%
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Job type you want
Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary

Real Writer And Editor Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Writer/Editor Na World Services, Inc. CA Oct 24, 2016 $92,206
Editor/Writer News America Incorporated New York, NY Aug 25, 2011 $82,500
Writer/Editor Wowmax Media, LLC Torrance, CA Apr 30, 2015 $80,995
Mainland Mandarin Chinese Siri Writer/Editor Apple Inc. Cupertino, CA Sep 11, 2014 $75,000 -
$95,000
Editor/Writer News America Incorporated New York, NY Aug 24, 2009 $75,000
Mainland Mandarin Chinese Siri Writer/Editor Apple Inc. Cupertino, CA Sep 05, 2014 $70,000 -
$90,000
Writer/Editor Aurora Publishing, Inc. Torrance, CA Oct 01, 2009 $60,000
Writer/Editor Make Sense Productions LLC Portland, ME Sep 16, 2015 $55,000
Chinese Writer and Editor for Education Column The Epoch Times of Boston, Inc. Boston, MA Oct 10, 2013 $52,175 -
$62,610
Writer/Editor Gallagher Malloy & Georges Philadelphia, PA Oct 01, 2012 $48,001
Editor/Writer U.S. Frontline News, Inc. New York, NY Dec 20, 2010 $42,241
Editor/Writer Ny Fashion Research Company Hillsdale, NY Sep 25, 2015 $41,740 -
$45,914
Editor/Writer Ny Fashion Research Company Hillsdale, NY May 31, 2014 $41,740
Corporate Writer & Editor Rosco International, Inc. Saddle Brook, NJ Oct 01, 2010 $41,490
Writer/Editor Trend Pot Ny, LLC. New York, NY Oct 01, 2009 $41,490
Editor/Writer World Journal NY Dec 02, 2010 $41,350
Writer/Editor Inter-Pacific Publications, Inc. Burlingame, CA Oct 01, 2012 $37,066
Editor/Writer Vivid Navigation, Inc. CA Sep 21, 2016 $37,065
Editor/Writer Axe USA, Inc./Axis Atlanta Atlanta, GA Aug 20, 2010 $37,000
Editor/Writer Vivid Navigation, Inc. CA Sep 25, 2013 $36,293
Editor/Writer Takuyo Corporation Torrance, CA Nov 01, 2011 $35,876

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Top Skills for A Writer And Editor

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  1. Web
  2. Online Content
  3. Feature
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Sharpen research skills and writing abilities by interviewing scientists and creating news stories for society websites based on recently published peer-reviewed articles
  • Write marketing communications, targeted customer communications, online content, press releases and advertising copy for contract clients.
  • Featured in Root Magazine for petition on Exodus: Gods and Kings: http://www.theroot.com/articles/culture/2014/12/exodus_gods_and_kings_flooded_with_race_problems_and_white_people.html.
  • Identified newsworthy topics in consultation with college administrators.
  • Collected and analyzed information about newsworthy events to write news stories for publication.

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Top 10 Best States for Writer And Editors

  1. District of Columbia
  2. Massachusetts
  3. Virginia
  4. New York
  5. California
  6. Connecticut
  7. New Jersey
  8. Delaware
  9. Washington
  10. Alabama
  • (147 jobs)
  • (166 jobs)
  • (293 jobs)
  • (507 jobs)
  • (604 jobs)
  • (57 jobs)
  • (80 jobs)
  • (14 jobs)
  • (109 jobs)
  • (44 jobs)

Top Writer And Editor Employers

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