Online Colleges for Writing

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  1. Freelance Industry Report 2011, International Freelancers Academy, http://d3go1ztdjepprc.cloudfront.net/ifd2011/FreelanceIndustryReport2011.pdf

With technology apparently taking over, you might think writers are teetering on the brink of irrelevance. However, in a world powered by videos, television and texts, writers are more important than ever. Yes, some still spin stories that capture the imagination, but they also draft online video scripts, create web content and develop sales collateral. Online writing degrees give job candidates valuable communications skills that are valued by employers across industries. Graduates with excellent writing skills often find they are able to work in jobs ranging from advertising to journalism and everything in between.

Online Writing Programs

While there is some truth to the notion that some individuals are born writers, there are technical aspects of the field that can be learned through online writing degrees as well as internships and personal mentoring. Those interested in pursuing an education in writing can find a variety of online degree choices. Some of the most common are online bachelor's degrees in English, liberal arts or interdisciplinary studies. These can help you to learn more about the craft of writing as well as how to direct your thoughts through well-crafted paragraphs and papers. After graduation, those wanting to learn more may wish to consider a master's degree in fine arts in writing or creative writing. These types of online programs can introduce you to concepts such as character creation and development, film screenwriting, and visual storytelling. Meanwhile, individuals not ready to commit to long-term online writing programs may want to enroll in short-term classes for a specific area of interest such as creative writing or children's literature.

Career opportunities for those completing online writing programs are varied. Some may choose to moonlight as a creative writer, working on their novel while being employed in a different field. Others may find work as a technical writer or copywriter. Writing degrees can lead to a number of occupations both in and out of the media industry; just consider the occupations available to editors, journalists, and public relations specialists. Those who identified their occupation as author or writer earned mean annual wages of $65,960, according to 2010 data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Technical writers, who often must have specialized knowledge in a particular field, had slightly higher mean annual wages of $66,240. According to a 2011 survey conducted by International Freelancers Day, 45 percent of freelancers (either part or full-time) earned between $20-$59 per hour. However, if a full-time writing career is not exactly what you have in mind, you may want to consider advertising and public relations as a way to put your writing skills to work. The BLS indicated that public relations and fundraising managers earned mean annual wages of $104,390 in 2010, and being a persuasive writer is often an important component of the job.

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