Authors and writers (NOC 5121)

High opportunity occupation

About this job

Authors and writers plan, research and write books, scripts, storyboards, plays, essays, speeches, manuals, specifications and other non-journalistic articles for publication or presentation.

Want to learn more? Watch this WorkBC Career Trek video and see what it’s like to work in this type of career.

Authors and writers may be self-employed or work for:

  • advertising agencies
  • governments
  • large corporations
  • private consulting firms
  • publishing firms
  • multimedia/new-media companies
Common job titles
  • author
  • biographer
  • crossword puzzle maker / compiler
  • essayist
  • ghost writer
  • lexicographer


Novelists, playwrights, script writers, poets and other creative writers:

  • create and write novels, plays, scripts, poetry and other material for publication or presentation
  • may conduct research to establish factual content and to get other necessary information

Technical writers:

  • analyze material, such as specifications, notes and drawings, and write manuals, user guides and other documents to explain clearly and concisely the installation, operation and maintenance of software and electronic, mechanical and other equipment


  • study and identify selling features of products and services and write text for advertisements and commercials

Special duties

Authors and writers may specialize in a particular subject or type of writing.

Work environment

Key aspects of the work in this occupation:

  • Work takes place in a conventional indoor office setting.

Career paths and resources

Career paths

Workers entering this field typically begin their employment in entry-level positions. These positions may involve work in public relations, marketing publicity, website editing or writing in the public sector or non-governmental organizations.

With experience, workers may progress to supervisory and management positions, such as editor-in-chief or managing editor at large newspapers, magazines or publishing houses.

Additional resources

Additional resources are not currently available for this career.