Dream Job Alert! How To Become a Columnist

Are you interested in writing your own column or working for news and magazines? Read on to learn more about the steps you can take to make your dreams come true!

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If you’re looking for a journalism career, consider becoming a columnist. Column writing is an all-encompassing, fulfilling job where learning never stops, and writers can share their opinions and thoughts with a broad, engaging audience. Unlike freelance, jobs in column writing are more stable. A columnist may write for a print publication or online, and they can dabble in a variety of tasks such as social media, infographics, or webinars. So, if this sounds like the position for you, here’s what you might need to begin working towards this goal.

Degree

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Column writing is a diverse career perfect for almost anyone who loves to write. Writers can write political, legal, human interest or rights, health, business, or sports columns, and much more. Although formal education is only sometimes required, a degree in a related communication field or field in the writer’s topic of interest will aid one in keeping up to date on current events and trends. A fascinating degree will only supplement your interest and enhance your ability to write about your passions.

Develop Your Voice and Discover Your Niche

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Because the type of column one could write for is so variable, it is essential to focus on one vital point and develop one’s voice in that type of writing. News writing will require a different tone and style than an opinion or fashion column. If you’re passionate about one topic, like sports or travel, gravitate towards projects that will highlight your love for that. Previous knowledge on the topic one wishes to write about will aid in credibility and foster trust between the writer and their audience. While it’s good to be flexible and have some experience in a wide range of topics, a focal point in your writing will fast-track your goals.

Practice and Portfolio Building

One of the best ways to become a writer in any field is to simply practice writing. For columnists, creating a blog can help grow an audience and unearth the unique style and niche of the writer. Additionally, a job or volunteer position within a publication, newspaper, magazine, or any platform will equip aspiring columnists with an insight into the industry and the skills needed to work in this field.

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A blog, writing samples, and all industry experience build up one’s portfolio, which is necessary for earning one’s dream writing job. Your portfolio should include the columns or samples that best describe your style, voice, and interests and highlight your ability and potential as a column writer. A robust portfolio establishes authority and credibility and is a fantastic selling point!

Pitch

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Pitch can go two different ways. Once you earn your dream columnist job, you must sustain a steady flow of fresh ideas for your column, which should be easy if you’re writing about what you love. However, before you get there, and even during that time, you must market and pitch yourself to future employers and network connections. Knowing off the top of your head your accomplishments, having a portfolio link ready, and having an updated resume ready can instantly land you a job. Never underestimate networking; you never know the connections others have! Having a community is significant.

While there is no one path to follow to become a columnist, these are just a few steps to help you get started. Everyone is on their timeline, and what works for you might not work for others. However, one thing is universally true: never give up on your dreams!


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