What Does A Staff Writer Do (including Their Typical Day at Work)

Alyssa OmandacCareer, Overview

Salary, Job Description, How To Become One, and Quiz

Staff Writers

Staff Writers involved in journalism write content for their employer, as opposed to Freelance Journalists who write for multiple news outlets. Staff Writers involved in the television industry collaborate with a team of writers to produce content for a specific TV program.

Bachelor's degree
Interest Match

Staff Writers enjoy a variety of advantages compared to other writing jobs. There are dozens of writing professions but working as a Staff Writer may provide the greatest job stability. Unlike freelance writers, Staff Writers are the in-house staff.

Some people may prefer the stability and work environment of being a Staff Writer. As an in-house Writer, you become part of a team. You may also spend more time collaborating on projects, which brings fresh perspectives and new ideas.

What they do

Staff Writers involved in journalism write content for their employer, as opposed to Freelance Journalists who write for multiple news outlets. Staff Writers involved in the television industry collaborate with a team of writers to produce content for a specific TV program.

Receive Assignments from an Editor

Staff Writers employed at news publications and broadcast news networks often receive assignments from an Editor. The Editor gives the Staff Writer a topic to cover along with any other requirements, such as the total word count for the assignment and how the information should be presented.

Some newsrooms allow Staff Writers to pitch story ideas. The Editor and Staff Writers may gather for a meeting and share the topics that they plan on covering. The Editor then accepts or rejects the submissions and assigns tasks to the Staff Writers.

Research Topics and Interview People

Staff Writers who work for news organizations or magazines may also research the topics that they cover. They may need to perform online research, search records and databases, and interview people. Staff Writers also maintain extensive notes during their research. When covering a news story, Staff Writers are required to back up all facts with credible sources.

Collaborate with Other Writers

Staff Writers in almost any setting typically collaborate with other Writers. This is especially true when working on a television show in a writers’ room. In a writers’ room, the Staff Writers work together to review and revise each script. The script for each episode of a television program may be written by one or two Writers and edited by the entire team. Staff Writers may also brainstorm ideas and help craft the overarching plot for the television program.

When working for a news organization, Staff Writers still frequently collaborate on projects. Multiple Staff Writers may produce content for a single article. Even when working on a solo story, Staff Writers collaborate with the Editor or a Proofreader to ensure that the final article does not contain any errors.

Attend Conferences or Public Events

Staff Writers occasionally attend industry conferences and workshops to keep up on the latest techniques and recommended practices. Staff Writers who work for news outlets may also attend public events when covering the event for a news story. The employer typically covers any travel-related expenses, such as airfare and accommodations.

What is the job like


I work from home, and I have five children, two of whom I homeschool. So, my work life is very much intertwined with my family life because it’s hard to break away from little ones entirely. My husband has Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday off each week, and on those days, I can knock out my … Read More


I am a Staff Contributor for EDM.com, a prominent dance and electronic music-focused media outlet. No two days of work are alike, which was a big draw for me when I first considered working within entertainment. The surprises that come with not knowing how each day and each story will pan out keep the job … Read More


You Get to Meet Interesting People

Staff Writers meet and work with a diverse range of people from all backgrounds, which can broaden your social awareness.

You Get to Work with Other Writers

Staff Writers can lean on the strengths of their fellow Writers when struggling with Writer’s block.

You May Gain National Exposure

When working for a major news organization, Staff Writers may receive national exposure and attract a following.

You Spend Less Time Looking for Work

Freelance Journalists devote a lot of time to looking for new jobs while Staff Writers can focus on writing.


You May Need to Meet Tight Deadlines

Staff Writers often need to meet tight deadlines to produce content on time, which can be stressful.

People May Disagree with Your Choices

Staff Writers occasionally receive negative criticism of their work, either due to their opinions or storytelling decisions.

Where they work

Television Industry
Journalism and News
Magazines and Print Publications
Online News and Information Sites

Staff Writers often work at television studios and production companies that produce TV shows, often as part of a writers’ room full of other Staff Writers and a Head Writer. When working in journalism, Staff Writers may work for newspapers, broadcast news organizations, or local news outlets. Magazines and periodicals also employ Staff Writers to produce consistent content. A growing number of websites rely on Staff Writers to continue releasing new articles.

How to become one

Step 1: Study English and Writing in High School

High school students should develop their writing skills by taking the highest level of English available.

Step 2: Earn a Bachelor’s Degree

Staff Writers need at least a Bachelor’s degree to seek work in the news industry. Common majors include Broadcast Journalism, Journalism, English, and Communication.

Step 3: Look for Entry-Level Writing Positions

After finishing college, start looking for entry-level jobs or internships. Many Staff Writers start as Assistants in a newsroom or writer’s room. After getting their foot in the door, Staff Writers typically work as Freelance Writers for several years.

Step 4: Apply for Staff Positions

With several years of experience, aspiring Staff Writers can start applying for staff positions at news organizations.

Step 5: Get an Agent

If you plan on working in the television industry, you will need an agent to land meetings with producers. After getting an agent, seek openings for junior-level Staff Writers.

Should you become one

Best personality type for this career

The Artist

People with this personality likes to work with designs and patterns. They prefer activities that require self-expression and prefer work that can be done without following a clear set of rules.

You can read more about these career personality types here.

Staff Writers are often detail-oriented due to the need to pay attention to every detail to avoid providing false information when covering current events. Staff Writers also need strong communication skills to effectively communicate a story and collaborate on projects with other Writers. Successful Staff Writers are also self-motivated individuals, as reaching this position often requires years of experience.

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