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Creative writing professional

Creative writing

A degree in creative writing allows you to develop your writing, research and creative thinking skills. You’ll also gain skills that are useful in a range of other careers such as publishing, marketing, PR and teaching

Job options

Jobs directly related to your degree include:

Jobs where your degree would be useful include:

Remember that many employers accept applications from graduates with any degree subject, so don’t restrict your thinking to the jobs listed here.

Take a few minutes to answer the Job Match quiz and find out what careers would suit you

Work experience

Building a portfolio of written work, especially any that you’ve had published, will help to evidence your writing skills and establish your reputation as a writer.

You can gain valuable experience by writing for your student newspaper or magazine, volunteering in schools, or getting involved with writers’ groups. Also, try submitting work to journals or anthologies, entering competitions, performing at spoken word events or approaching local drama groups to see if they will use your scripts. This will boost your profile and help build your confidence.

To make yourself more employable, look for opportunities to gain some solid work experience. This could be in the form of paid administrative work for a company or volunteering, perhaps with a local charity helping them to promote the work they do.

You could also write speculatively to a number of businesses, including publishing houses and marketing firms, to ask if you could complete some short-term work experience or shadowing. This can have the advantage of getting you a foot in the door in a highly-competitive industry and could lead to a permanent position.

As well as creative talent and writing experience, you will also need perseverance and determination to succeed as a writer.

Search for placements and find out more about work experience and internships.

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Typical employers

As a creative writing graduate you may work to establish yourself as a writer on a self-employed basis, either writing your own works, or writing for others in a freelance capacity.

Alternatively, you could find opportunities with a variety of employers, including:

  • publishing houses or editorial/technical writing service companies
  • advertising, marketing and public relations agencies, particularly in a copywriting capacity
  • primary, secondary, further and higher education institutions
  • media organisations and social media companies
  • general businesses – in an administrative or general management position
  • Civil Service, library or charitable organisations.

Employers hiring creative writing graduates now

Product Developer

  • CGP Books
  • Cumbria
  • £24,501-£27,000
Where will your words shine?

Publishing. Media. Theatre. Study MA Creative Writing. Hone your craft into a lifelong career

Skills for your CV

As well as building specialist knowledge of creative writing, you also develop effective written, oral and presentation skills through your degree. Other skills include:

  • creative thinking and problem solving – these skills are useful for many jobs and you’ll have gained them from developing characters and storylines
  • independent working – having to be self-motivated as a writer means you can effectively determine and direct your own workload
  • time management and organisation – learning to structure your time effectively as a writer means you can be highly organised
  • a good understanding of information technology
  • collaboration – from liaising with students from other related courses such as journalism and film studies
  • independent research and analysis – you’ll be adept at this from turning ideas into well-rounded stories
  • editorial and proofreading – from producing accurately written content
  • negotiation and networking – learning how to market your work effectively gives you the skill to negotiate in other workplace settings.

Further study

As a creative writing graduate you can develop your creative writing skills further by undertaking further study at Masters or PhD level. You can also specialise in an area such as screenwriting, the graphic novel, writing for young people, writing poetry, or writing and producing comedy.

Alternatively, you may want to undertake further vocational training in areas such as teaching, journalism, librarianship or publishing. Vocational courses allow you to study in an area in which you would like to have a career.

You may also want to consider further study in areas such as PR, marketing or advertising.

For more information on further study and to find a course that interests you, see Masters degrees and search postgraduate courses in creative writing.

What do creative writing graduates do?

A tenth (11%) of creative writing graduates who are in employment in the UK are working as authors, writers and translators, while 6% are working as marketing associate professionals.

Destination Percentage
Employed 61.3
Further study 7.1
Working and studying 14.3
Unemployed 11.6
Other 5.7
Type of work Percentage
Retail, catering and customer service 26.1
Arts, design and media 18.4
Clerical, secretarial and administrative 15
Marketing, PR and sales 10.2
Other 30.3

Find out what other creative writing graduates are doing 15 months after finishing their degrees in What do graduates do?

The Importance of Creative Writing
in Your Professional Career

While it may seem that creative writing is something that only liberal arts majors and people in writing careers need, the ability to write well and to communicate effectively is important in many different places within the business world.

Creative writing is a business skill that few people choose to cultivate and that helps boost those who do above their competition.

Many of the best CEOs in the world have extremely advanced creative writing skills that they use on a regular basis and that helps them win over contracts and support on a regular basis.

Advantages of Creative Writing

Many shareholders appreciate when information is given to them in a concise manner. However, they also appreciate when communication from a company that they are investing in takes the time to write them a creative and well-worded newsletter. Having the ability to communicate effectively while exciting investors and keeping them up to date on the inner workings of your company is an important skill for any manager. This can also translate over to thanking individual investors and keeping them up to date with the impact that their financial backing has made within your institution.

Within the company itself, memos, emails and other communication with employees will generally be better received if they are funny, interesting, and relevant to the situation at hand.

Softening bad news or explaining an issue to your employees in a way that they are able to understand will have a much bigger impact than a tersely worded memo that creates confusion and a hostile atmosphere. This can help you be a much more effective manager and show that you are ready to take on higher levels of responsibility while still having the support of your employees and those that you interact with on a day-to-day basis.

Investment Plans will generally go over smoother if they have interesting projections, well thought out predictions, and information that shows everyone involved that they have been under consideration for a long time. Deploying your creative writing skills to expand upon presentations, facts, and quick information, will make it easier to woo over individuals who are not quite on board with your plans.

This also makes it easier for the media and other outlets to tell the public about your plans and can be used to gain viral support from groups that would otherwise ignore your plans or brush them off before they come to fruition.

Further Reading from Skills You Need

Develop the skills you need to get that job.

This eBook is essential reading for potential job-seekers. Not only does it cover identifying your skills but also the mechanics of applying for a job, writing a CV or resume and attending interviews.

Professional Image

Your professional image can also be bolstered or tarnished depending upon your writing and your ability to communicate in a creative way.

This is because people in this business world are perceived as being well educated, and this assumption has colored what the world sees as professionalism. If you come across as unable to effectively communicate and seem like you are lacking in creativity, people are going to view you as less professional and react to you in a less than favorable manner. Being able to introduce yourself, reply to official correspondence, and contribute to documents with a high level of skill will show you to be a true professional and will impress many people.

Personal documentation such as an online profile, notes on contracts, and information for your future use will also come across better when it is well written.

If you are excited about a future opportunity, buy into the idea of writing yourself notes, or want to keep a personal record for your successors, writing in a creative manner will keep it interesting and help explain your needs and desires better. This is also a great way to ensure that you are not bored when you look back at your previous notes, and may help you find information that is important without much difficulty.

Improved Leadership Skills

Leadership skills are also helped when you are able to work on your creative writing and go out of your way to apply this skill.

We already talked about using creative writing for your office memos, but it can also be used to demonstrate your ability to lead.

Depending on your position, your boss may expect detailed reports and will often use them when considering who to promote and who they want to delegate more information to over time.

Writing your reports to be engaging, well thought out, and interesting will increase the chances that they will see you as a good candidate.

Memorability is another reason that you should seek to improve your creative writing skills over time. As everyone in business knows, you are your own personal brand and everything you do should be done with that in mind. To that end, you are always seeking to make yourself memorable (for the right reasons) and to increase your personal brand recognition.

Well written information and plans are one way to ensure that you remain memorable to people when they first come into contact with you in a formal business sense.

Now more than ever, written communication is necessary for business and for personal communication. The age of meeting every week is over, and the age of Skype messages, Google collaborations, mass emails, and text messages has taken over. In this world, it is extremely important to get your point across without seeming like you are struggling for words. In addition, people who use these skills find that they remember more in meetings and are more comfortable communicating with people face to face.

Improved Communication

The communication process as a whole is improved when you are better at creative writing and take the time to apply concepts from courses you have taken to your work.

While terse communication can get information across, creative communication invites collaboration and marks you as an individual with a high level of professional commitment.

You may find that you are able to maintain better business relationships when you open yourself to new ways of communicating, and that your older relationships improve over time as well. No matter how big or small your company is, you will find that effective communication is the best way to move up in life.

About the Author

Jonathan Leger is a freelance writer and small business owner. He runs a popular question and answer website.

Professional & Creative Writing Major

Please note: If this page does not display properly, or for more information, see the academic catalogue. Current students can find advising worksheets and monitor their progress towards degree completion with DegreeWorks. For more information, visit the Success Advising page.

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