How to Sell Your Words: 6 Career Paths You Can Take as a Professional Writer

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Do you love the idea of leaving the office and still making a living in the comforts of your home? Maybe you like staying in your pajamas while earning some extra cash? Well, you’re not the only one.

Many individuals are now seeking to work from home. Mostly, these are people who no longer want to drive through traffic and spend eight hours a day at the office, or were disqualified for a traditional desk job due to old age or pregnancy. This paved the way for the steady growth of home-based jobs, particularly in the field of marketing.

For many of you who are passionate about turning your thoughts into written words, being an online writer may just be the right choice. However, you must know that there is more to it than just being a writer.

There are plenty of career paths you can take as an online professional writer, some of which are listed below:

Blogging

Blogs are arguably the most famous form of content that most businesses want. Aside from serving as a way to boost their online presence, a good blog also helps establish brands’ authority and clout in a specific field or niche.

If you’re a writer, becoming a blogger is one of the quickest ways to begin working from home. For one, many job boards cater to blog writing positions. Plus, the job covers plenty of niches, so you can pick one that suits your passion the most and impress clients as you go along.

Writing blog posts is quite straightforward. Aside from the conversational tone they take, blogs also run between 800 and 1,500 words long. This is the ideal length for Google to find a website where the blog post is published.

Of course, you can also niche-down to a form of blog writing that focuses on long-form pieces. These typically have 2,000 to 5,000 words and offer not only the facts but also an in-depth analysis of the information provided. This means that, if you’re planning to write long-form, you must first have insider knowledge or at least perform thorough research on the subject you’re writing about.

SEO-friendly blogs are also keyword-centric, which means that certain phrases or words are incorporated in the body of the blog that helps it rank better in the search engine results pages (SERPs). An excellent blog must also have an appealing headline and a call to action (CTA) at the end of the article.

Blogs can have a varying tone of voice as well; it can be informative and educational, friendly and conversational, or an entertaining tone. Keep in mind that the voice should be tailored to the specific audience. This will help the business you’re writing to reach their target audience.

Technical Writing

Another career path that expert writers can take is technical writing. If you have a knack for digesting complex ideas and explaining them in layman’s terms, then you’re a good fit for this type of writing job.

Technical writers are responsible for writing how-to articles, documentation, instruction manuals, FAQs, and other materials that can be used as a guide for something. While it may not sound as enjoyable as blogging, it can actually be quite fun to do, especially if you enjoy highly technical topics like web design, engineering, science, and cryptocurrency, among others.

It is also worth mentioning that there is a high demand for technical writers around the world, and it is still growing. In fact, in the United States alone, the demand is predicted to increase by 10 percent in 2024 which is significantly higher than other jobs.

Although some companies offer technical writing gigs part-time, most require a full-time professional for the job. You might also need a college degree and familiarity with the specific technical subject to get hired for a technical writing position.

Editorship

Writing isn’t the only thing good writers can do – they can also work as editors. Most of the time, good writers also make great editors. Their skills and experience in coming up with topics and weaving words to make a concise, comprehensible copy give them an edge in this job.

If you’re a professional writer planning to become an editor, you must learn how to adjust your perspective. Instead of developing pitches and writing great copies, you’ll be responsible for assigning the tasks to writers and making sure that the quality of their output is on par with what is expected for the project.

Like writers, editors can also perform a variety of roles and work with several industries. This means you can choose to become a magazine editor, a blog editor, or even a developmental editor at a publishing house. Whatever you decide, having a degree in journalism, media, or communications can help you gain an edge over other applicants.

Ghostwriting

Not every writing gig can give you the glory of the by-line – this much can be said for ghostwriters.

Ghostwriting is a job where a writer creates content for a brand, business, entrepreneur, or magazine without getting credit for it. This means that he won’t be able to include anything written while working as a ghostwriter in his portfolio since, in the eyes of the audience, he isn’t the one who wrote them. Plus, his name won’t usually appear anywhere near the article as it would be under the by-line of the person or brand he worked for.

Sounds less appealing, right? Despite removing the glory from the picture, ghostwriting is still a popular gig among pro writers. Why? Because it’s a highly lucrative job.

As a ghostwriter, you can charge as much as three times more for a ghost piece than one with your author by-line. This is why many writers who are not after credit seek out more ghostwriting gigs since clients are often easy to please, not to mention they pay better.

Content Strategizing

Another career path that writers can try is content strategizing. Content strategists use their strong communication and writing skills in conjunction with analytical thinking to create an online content plan. In some cases, they are also the ones who implement it, in which case, they may need to write online content.

A content strategist is responsible for creating a content calendar that would work to achieve specific business goals set by the company. They also apply SEO principles and look into analytics to determine the type of content that works and which ones don’t. Then, they adjust their strategy accordingly to ensure that company goals are achieved.

If you want to become a content strategist, it would be best to get training in communications, journalism, or technical writing. It will also help if you learn search engine optimization.

Copywriting

Copywriting is another popular career path that passionate writers can take. It is a job that requires you to use your creativity and gift for weaving words in a way that makes sense to create an appealing copy for print, TV, radio, and the Internet.

Essentially, your goal is to use words to make people want to purchase a product or seek out a particular service from a company. Often, this means you’ll have to come up with shorter but more impactful pieces. Some of the works of a copywriter include writing radio jingles, billboards, social media ads, and slogans.

Write Up Your Future

Being a professional writer is no easy job, but it does have its perks. For one, writers are among the most sought-after remote staff since the dawn of the Internet. They also earn more than most office-based workers.

Use the might of your pen (or keyboard) to write up your future. Consider the career paths listed in this article and pick out the one that suits you best.

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