Posted in Career Insights
creative writing salary

Working as a writer is a job that you may find appealing.

Writing is a career that sounds romantic to many.

It can allow you to express yourself to a greater extent than most people you know, and some writers can make good money.

Of course, writing also has a long association with poor incomes, and the impoverished writer is something of a stereotype (in fictional stories, interestingly). What’s the truth? What kind of creative writing salary do most people in the industry make?

As always, there are a number of different factors that will determine the income you can expect to make as a creative writer. 

Where you live will, of course, be a factor; if you’re living in a major city in California, you can expect (and indeed, SHOULD expect) to make more money than if you live in Nebraska’s rural expanses.

Unsurprisingly, as with many other jobs, the amount of experience you have will also be a factor; more experience in creative writing means better pay for your work.

So what is the usual creative writing salary, and what is a good creative writing salary?


The price that you demand for your first creative writing job will vary, mostly because you can bring wildly differing levels of knowledge to the field.

Someone who has only a GED may struggle to organize their thoughts, use correct grammar, or craft an interesting narrative.

On the other hand, someone with some education in creative writing is more likely to be adept at the actual writing they do.

So while both the high school graduate and the person with a four-year degree in a topic like English or fiction writing will seek an entry-level job, what they will make can vary wildly.

People without any education or training in creative writing who are applying for their first creative writing position can expect to make around $25,000 a year.

According to ZipRecruiter, 14% of all creative writing jobs currently open pay between $19,000 and $25,000 a year. Incidentally, that makes up the greatest portion of writing jobs currently open.

If you want to make more than that, you need education. You can take classes at your local college, gain experience by working as a writer, take courses like the creative writing course at Stratford Career Institute.


Thankfully, though low-paying creative writing jobs are the most plentiful, the average pay for a creative writer is literally double the entry-level pay.

As of July 2021, the average pay for a creative writing position is about $63,395 annually, which comes out to roughly $30 an hour.

This is the kind of pay you can expect if you’ve spent a few years writing, have a good education in writing, or demonstrate some mixture of the two.


The top 90th percentile can expect to make a bit more than the average. ZipRecruiter reports that the annual salary of those in the 90th percentile is around $78,000, which is slightly better than the average pay.

If you’re considering a career as a creative writer, a professional writer, or really any kind of writer, you need to begin with a basis of knowledge to help you excel.

If you don’t already have that base, you should consider Stratford Career Institute’s course to get started.


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Become a Creative Writer!

Become a Creative Writer!

Stratford Career Institute offers an online course that can set you on the right path to becoming a creative writer.