When pursuing the dream of becoming an author or professional writer, many believe they need a college degree to succeed.
So, how hard is it to become a writer without a degree? Well, not as difficult as you might think! In fact, many famous writers such as Mark Twain and Maya Angelou didn’t have a college education.
Here are some ways you can work toward becoming a professional writer without pursuing a formal degree.
1. Practice Your Craft
Becoming a writer without a degree begins with practice. Thus, the best first step is to start writing about things that intrigue you.
Do you have any favorite hobbies? Did you notice something strange while running errands? Did something spectacular happen to you as a kid? Writing about anything, even if it’s just simple observations, helps you practice the craft and develop your voice.
If you need help coming up with material, try experimenting with writing prompts. Here are some weekly prompts from Poets & Writers to help you get started.
2. Create a Portfolio
When it comes to publishing your work, many magazines, journals, and agents want to see samples. This helps show your range and writing capabilities.
Depending on your goals, you may want to choose pieces with the same topic to show your expertise. Or perhaps you want a wide variety of topics to highlight your talents writing in multiple genres. Either way, make sure your portfolio highlights your best work.
3. Network with Other Writers
Remember that there are other writers who have been in your position. If you want to workshop your writing or receive a critique from others, try networking.
Building relationships with other writers or editors not only gives you insight into how to improve your writing, but also keeps you open to new opportunities.
If you want to break into a specific industry or genre, find key writers in that area and get to know them. They may recommend your work and give you tips on how to become a writer without a degree.
4. Find a Mentor
If you still don’t feel confident in your writing, find a mentor to teach you the process.
This is much easier to do if you network with writing groups, since many writers may have more experience. They can also help you understand the submission or pitching process for your work and what to expect.
5. Take a Writing Course
Finally, if you want to know how to become a writer without a degree, you should consider taking a course. Online writing courses have a few major benefits over traditional college courses.
Not only can you complete them at your own pace, but they are also a lot cheaper. They also allow you to focus on the aspects of writing you care about the most.
Enroll in One of Stratford’s Writing Courses Today
If you’re looking to learn the basics of professional writing, consider enrolling in a course at Stratford Career Institute. We offer a creative writing course as well as a specialized course in writing stories for children.
In both, you’ll learn how to write for your target audience and the process for publishing your work. If you want to know how to become an author without a degree, these courses can help you get started!
Become a Writer Without a Degree!
Stratford Career Institute offers a convenient and affordable online course to teach you the basics of professional writing.