What Can One Expect to Earn From Being a Writer?

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    Salary

    • The average writer earns $65,960 a year as of May 2010, reports the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Wages start at less than $28,610 in the 10th percentile and exceed $109,440 a year for writers in the 90th percentile, while the median annual income is $55,420.

    Industry

    • Writers working for newspaper, periodical, book and directory publishers earn an average salary of $56,210 as of 2010, reports the bureau. Those specializing in creating written materials to be using in advertising and public relations earn an average of $73,710, and those working on scripts in the radio and television broadcasting industry earn an average of $66,110. In motion picture and video industries the average salary of a writer is $78,110, while those working as independent writers earn an average of $101,110. The only industry with a higher salary average for writers is lessors of non-financial intangible assets, excepting copyrighted works, where the average is $113,830 a year.

    Location

    • The highest concentration of jobs for writers can be found in the District of Columbia as of 2010, where 1.91 writers are employed per every thousand jobs, earning an average of $80,540 a year. The bureau names New York as the state where writers earn the highest wages, with a salary average of $88,630, while California ranks second with an average of $85,170. Washington and Maryland also offer higher-than-average salaries for writers at $68,760 and $68,540, respectively.

    Outlook

    • The bureau expects that job opportunities for writers will increase by 8 percent between 2008 and 2018. In particular, companies attempting to meet demand for more Internet-based content are increasingly seeking out writers. Businesses are also interested in expanding newsletters by adding services such as text messaging for customers. In general, writers with a bachelor’s degree in communications, journalism, English or a similar field will have the best chances in the job market.

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