If you love writing, it’s easy to turn your passion into a career! Today, there are many writing jobs available in which you can both get paid for writing and work your way toward a writing career. This guide is for people who enjoy writing and are considering pursuing a full-time writing career.

Jobs where you get paid for writing

The most important thing you can do to get paid for writing and begin a writing career is to simply start writing! Below are some types of writing jobs for you to consider, what type of writing they do, and some important traits for each type of writing job:


Journalists are news writers. A journalist will get paid for writing by gathering information in the form of text, audio, photos, or video, then processing this information into a news-worthy form and making it available to the public.

To have a successful writing career, journalists must have ethical integrity to build trust with their audience. They must also possess good communication and analytical skills to help them base their stories on facts rather than the emotions or speculations of others.

Skillshare Courses

Writing a Perfect News Article

Nadia Eldemerdash, Writer, editor, and blogger on Skillshare

Writing a Perfect News Article

Nadia Eldemerdash, Writer, editor, and blogger on Skillshare
Short Course


Screenwriters write scripts and screenplays. Scripts and screenplays are used in mass media such as films, television programs, online videos, and even video games.

Screenwriters get paid for writing by having passion and appreciation for studying and practising their art.

They must also have the persistence to keep pursuing their goals and past roadblocks that may stand in the way of their work being accepted by television and film companies.

Technical writer

Technical writers get paid for writing technical content. In a technical writing career, the task is to communicate information between two or more parties so that a transfer of information can take place.

Technical writing jobs can include manuals, how-to books, white papers, design specifications, e-learning courses, and other online training materials, medical or scientific journals, or software documentation. Technical writers must have good skills in understanding technical, fact-based topics.

They must also know how to ask thoughtful questions so they can write in a way that will be clear to their readers.

Travel writer

Travels writers explore new travel destinations and share their observations and experiences with others through their writing. They get paid for writing travel guides and articles about vacation and travel destinations.

An important trait for a travel writing career is the desire to travel and experience new environments and cultures with which they may not be familiar.

Travel writers must also have good observations skills and attention to detail, so they can convey the look and feel of their surroundings to their readers.


Authors are a broad category of writing. While authors can write just about anything, authors get paid for writing most often in classic, traditional, literary genres.

An author’s writing career can include either fiction or nonfiction. This can range from fantasy, science fiction, crime, history, comedy, drama, mystery, or romance, to name just a few.

Authors of any genre must have patience, perseverance, and a bit of stubbornness to be successful. They must also have a healthy imagination as well as be detail-oriented.


Ghostwriters get paid to write on behalf of someone else. In these writing jobs, ghostwriters are hired to write journalistic or literary works, articles, speeches, or other content that are officially credited to another person as the author.

They mimic the writing style of celebrities, executives, or political leaders who may be too busy to write for themselves. Ghostwriters may also edit or rewrite scripts to improve them for screenwriters.

Sometimes the ghostwriter is credited for their work, but most often they are not. A successful ghostwriter must be discreet and humble. They must also be versatile, paying attention to and being able to follow the writing style and traits of others.


Editors review and improve the written material. In their writing career, they are responsible for checking the writing of others and determining the final content of a text.

While editors can work in various industries, editor writing jobs are most common in the publishing world, particularly newspapers and magazines, either in print or online. Editors must have a solid grasp of their publication, understanding its tone and style to ensure that the text they review and edit will fit with it.

They must also have a very high level of attention to detail as well as a keen knowledge of grammar, punctuation, spelling, and other rules of proper writing.


Copywriters write the text of advertisements or publicity material. They get paid for writing clear, compelling content that will engage, educate, and inform potential customers, persuading them to purchase products.

Copywriters can write text for websites, blog posts, product descriptions, emails, banner ads, newsletters, white papers, or social media. Copywriters must have excellent research skills to understand the company and product for which they are writing.

They must also understand their audience and be able to use all this information to craft convincing sales messages.

If you’re looking to start a career in copywriting or simply want to enhance your existing skills, online copywriting courses offer a convenient and cost-effective way to improve your writing abilities and increase your earning potential.

Chartered Institute of Marketing Courses

Digital Copywriting Fundamentals

Chartered Institute of Marketing on FutureLearn

Boost your organisation’s digital marketing presence by learning how to write engaging, search engine optimised digital content.

Digital Copywriting Fundamentals

Chartered Institute of Marketing on FutureLearn

Boost your organisation’s digital marketing presence by learning how to write engaging, search engine optimised digital content.

Short Course
3 weeks


Bloggers write about a specific topic or topics online. They get paid for writing short, concise pieces, called blog posts, that are focused on a topic, subject, product, or brand. The topics are endless and could include travel, housekeeping, exercise, pet care, or anything in between. Bloggers can write a single post or a series of related posts.

They must be able to quickly assimilate information from the topics on which they are writing and must often be prepared to write pieces frequently and to short timelines.

In a blogger’s writing career, knowledge of SEO, or Search Engine Optimization, is a good skill because embedding SEO in their writing can help improve the search engine rankings of the websites that they’re being paid to write for.

Freelance vs in-house writing 

While there are many ways in which you can get paid for writing, there are two main ways in which you can be employed as a writer: freelance or in-house.

Freelance writing

A freelance writer is a self-employed writer who takes freelance writing jobs in exchange for payment. In freelance writing, your work is project-based, and it’s assigned by and paid for by a client and competed in a specific timeframe. Being self-employed, freelance writers are essentially business owners.

As such, they must not only have good writing skills, but they must also have skills to market and land clients as well as manage a steady stream of work.

Freelance writers work independently, rather than as part of a staff. They also choose the location and hours in which they will do their writing and typically use their equipment. Plus, they often work with multiple clients at a time.

In-house writing

An in-house writer is employed directly by an organization. They may work for any size of a for-profit business or non-profit group, but write for and are paid directly by the organization that employs them. They may write on single or multiple writing jobs at a time for their organization.

In-house writers most often work as part of a staff or team, as part of a group of other writers, or as part of a marketing, sales, or advertising department. In-house writers frequently do their writing in an office setting where their organization is located and work within their organization’s daily business hours.

In general, a freelance writing career provides more freedom, while an in-house writing career provides more stability. You should carefully consider the advantages and disadvantages of both freelance and in-house writing, so you can decide which of these would be the best fit for your writing style and skills, preferences, aptitudes, and other factors.

How to boost your writing skills 

Writing is a skill, and like any skill, it can be improved through learning and practice. Here are a few suggestions to help you enhance your skill for a writing career:

Online writing courses

There are many online writing courses available, and they span many types of writing.

Whether you are starting as a writer or already have a writing career and would like to improve your current writing skills, you can start with an online search for courses in the type of writing that is of most interest to you.

From there, you can determine which course might best fit your needs. Factors to consider are cost, duration of time, hours required, how general or specific the course topics are, and if completion of the course provides any type of certification.

You can also ask if a short sample of the course materials or a syllabus of the course topics are available for you to evaluate in advance to help you decide if the course is right for you.

Writing experience

There are a growing number of opportunities to do online freelance writing jobs and get paid for writing, allowing you to be paid for relatively short, quick freelanced writing.

This can help you decide if it is something you like to do, assist you in narrowing down the areas in which you’d like to concentrate your writing, and give you real-world experience as a writer which can help you decide if you would like to pursue a writing career.

These writing jobs are most often freelance writing projects and are typically in the areas of copywriting and content writing as described above. Freelancing platforms like Upwork and Fiverr are good places to start, and you can begin narrowing your options from there based on your interests.

Copywriting for Digital Marketing

University of Cape Town on GetSmarter

Learn how to generate leads and drive conversion through impactful online copy.

Copywriting for Digital Marketing

University of Cape Town on GetSmarter

Learn how to generate leads and drive conversion through impactful online copy.

Short Course
6 weeks

In summary

It’s easy to turn your passion for writing into a rewarding writing career. Today, there are many opportunities to get paid for writing and with just a little searching, you can find a wide variety of paid writing gigs.

Whether you decide to become a freelance or in-house writer, you can improve your writing skills through some of the top online writing courses, and by taking short writing jobs that will give you real experience!