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Writing Careers

Writing is a great profession and is open to people from all walks of life and educational backgrounds. Plus, working freelance is a real option for writers. If you decide to work freelance, you’ll be able to choose:

  • who to write for
  • what to write about.


So, if you fancy travelling the world reviewing the latest luxury products, like Cindy-Lou, you can. Or, if you prefer, you can stay at home and write novels based on your professional experiences, like Hazel.

Careers in Writing: Freelance or Salaried?

There are salaried positions available for writers, but most prefer the freedom of working freelance. The lure of being in control of your own career is a powerful one. But, there are some aspects of a freelance lifestyle that need to be carefully considered, such as budgeting to make sure you have enough funds to cover the lean periods, illness or holidays or being responsible for any tax and national insurance contributions that you will be expected to pay. Working for a publication in a salaried position is a little different, as the publication will have a particular style and content they’ll expect from you. But, you have the security of knowing you have a regular wage and contributions will be paid on your behalf.

Fiction or Non-fiction?

Many writers work on more than one project at a time. So, they may be bringing in a regular wage writing articles for numerous non-fiction publications whilst also working on completing their novel. Non-fiction is generally considered the quickest way into a career as a freelance writer – there is more demand for articles than novels and non-fiction books are easier to get published. In fact, there are four or five times more non-fiction books published than novels.

Tutoring and Teaching

As a writer, you have a number of opportunities available to you beyond simply producing writing. You can also explore the tutoring and teaching possibilities provided by the huge market in writing courses. Courses come in all shapes and sizes – from six months home-study to three years full-time and everything in between – so there’ll be an opportunity to suit your preferred teaching or tutoring methods and lifestyle.

What you have read is only a brief explanation of what writers do. The best way to demonstrate the flexibility and variety in writing is with real life examples. So, the links below detail the writing careers that Writers Bureau graduates and tutors have forged for themselves. They’ll give you some idea of how you can change your life with a little hard work and self-belief!


Travel Writing Careers    

Cindy-Lou Dale

Tim Skelton


Careers as a Novelist    

Christina Jones

Hazel McHaffie


Successful Writers  

Justin Tonna



Writing for Children Careers

Cynthia John



Copywriting Careers

Mike Robinson




Theresa Gooda Writers Bureau's Student of the Year 2021

“I began my first Writers Bureau course (Comprehensive Creative Writing) in 2007. Having more than covered the course fees from published pieces I have never looked back. Initially my ambitions were to get going. I knew I wanted to be a writer, I just didn’t know how to go about it, or, if I’m honest, quite what I wanted to write. Since, I have gradually blended a teaching career with writing, first with articles and short stories, then increasing the writing commitment dramatically when I secured an agent in 2016 to ghostwrite a series of memoirs. This year I have undertaken The Art of Writing Poetry course to really hone my skills in what I now realise is a genre I love - and have already had my first poems published.”

Theresa Gooda - Writers Bureau Student of the Year 2021

Read Theresa's full story

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