Popular Careers

Career Development

Career development resources for aspiring professionals.

Career Change Center

Career change guides, tutorials and resources for professionals in transition.

Job Search Resources

Job search resources, websites, guides and directories for job seekers.


Career and Education Opportunities for Writers in Charleston, West Virginia

Charleston, West Virginia provides a wide variety of opportunities, both career and educational, for writers. There are currently 510 jobs for writers in West Virginia and this is projected to grow 9% to 560 jobs by 2016. This is not quite as good as the national trend for writers, which sees this job pool growing by about 14.8% over the next eight years. In general, writers create original written works.

A person working as a writer can expect to earn about $11 hourly or $24,130 per year on average in West Virginia and about $25 per hour or $53,070 per year on average in the U.S. as a whole. Earnings for writers are not quite as good as earnings in the general category of Writing and Editing in West Virginia and not quite as good as general Writing and Editing category earnings nationally. Writers work in a variety of jobs, including: game author, librettist, and script writer.

There are seventeen schools of higher education in the Charleston area, including three within twenty-five miles of Charleston where you can get a degree to start your career as a writer. Given that the most common education level for writers is a high school diploma or GED, you can expect to spend only a short time training to become a writer if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Writer

In general, writers create original written works.

Writers revise written material to meet personal standards and to satisfy needs of clients or producers. They also choose subject matter and suitable form to express personal feelings and experiences or concepts, or to narrate stories or events. Equally important, writers have to formulate project arrangements or outlines, and organize material accordingly. They are often called upon to collaborate with other writers on specific projects. They are expected to ready works in appropriate format for publication, and send them to publishers or producers. Finally, writers talk with clients or producers to consider changes or revisions to written material.

Every day, writers are expected to be able to write clearly and communicate well. They need to be creative and generate new ideas.

It is important for writers to conduct research to obtain factual data and authentic detail, using sources such as newspaper accounts and interviews. They are often called upon to follow appropriate procedures to get copyrights for completed work. They also attend book launches and publicity events, or conduct public readings. They are sometimes expected to design factors such as themes and dialogue, to generate material. Somewhat less frequently, writers are also expected to collaborate with other writers on specific projects.

Writers sometimes are asked to teach writing classes. And finally, they sometimes have to revise written material to meet personal standards and to satisfy needs of clients or producers.

Like many other jobs, writers must be persistant in the face of problems and impediments and want to innovate to meet new challenges.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Charleston include:

  • Copy Writer. Write advertising copy for use by publication or broadcast media to promote sale of goods and services.
  • Editorial Specialist. Perform variety of editorial duties, such as laying out, indexing, and revising content of written materials, in preparation for final publication.
  • Fine Artist. Create original artwork using any of a wide variety of mediums and techniques.
  • Music Composer. Write and transcribe musical scores.
  • Music Director. Direct and conduct instrumental or vocal performances by musical groups.
  • Reporter. Collect and analyze facts about newsworthy events by interview, investigation, or observation. Report and write stories for newspaper, news magazine, or television.
  • Singer. Sing songs on stage, radio, or motion pictures.
  • Technical Writer. Write technical materials, such as equipment manuals, appendices, or operating and maintenance instructions. May assist in layout work.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Writer Training

University of Charleston - Charleston, WV

University of Charleston, 2300 MacCorkle Avenue, SE, Charleston, WV 25304. University of Charleston is a small university located in Charleston, West Virginia. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 1,431 students and an admission rate of 66%. University of Charleston has a bachelor's degree program in Mass Communication/Media Studies which graduated thirteen students in 2008.

West Virginia State Community and Technical College - Institute, WV

West Virginia State Community and Technical College, 103 Cole Complex, Institute, WV 25112-1000. West Virginia State Community and Technical College is a small college located in Institute, West Virginia. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 1,741 students. West Virginia State Community and Technical College has an associate's degree program in Communication Studies/Speech Communication and Rhetoric which graduated two students in 2008.

West Virginia State University - Institute, WV

West Virginia State University, Rte 25, Institute, WV 25112-1000. West Virginia State University is a small university located in Institute, West Virginia. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 3,347 students and an admission rate of 57%. West Virginia State University has 2 areas of study related to Writer. They are:

  • Communication Studies/Speech Communication and Rhetoric, bachelor's degree which graduated 36 students in 2008.
  • Mass Communication/Media Studies, master's degree which graduated 4 students in 2008.

CERTIFICATIONS

Fiscal Services - Accelerated Package: Fiscal Services - Accelerated Package course list: Better Requests for Proposals for Better Projects; Continuous Improvement Through Monitoring; Contracting; New Coding System for the 21st Century; Procurement; and Writing Winning Grant Proposals.

For more information, see the Dynamic Works Institute website.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Charleston, West Virginia

Charleston, West Virginia
Charleston, West Virginia photo by Malepheasant

Charleston is situated in Kanawha County, West Virginia. It has a population of over 50,302, which has shrunk by 5.8% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Charleston, 84, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in Charleston are priced at $268,400 on average, which is far greater than the state average. In 2008, thirty-four new homes were constructed in Charleston, up from twenty-seven the previous year.

The three most popular industries for women in Charleston are health care, educational services, and public administration. For men, it is professional, scientific, and technical services, health care, and public administration. The average travel time to work is about 16 minutes. More than 32.6% of Charleston residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 15.0%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Charleston is 7.7%, which is the same as West Virginia's average of 7.7%. About 16.7% of Charleston's residents are below the poverty line, which is better than the state average.

The percentage of Charleston residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 34.5%, is less than both the national and state average. Starcher Baptist Church, Southeast Church of the Nazarene and South Ruffner Presbyterian Church are among the churches located in Charleston. The largest religious groups are the American Baptist Churches in the USA, the United Methodist Church and the Catholic Church.

Charleston is home to the John F Kennedy Center and the Kanawha County Courthouse as well as Watt Powell Stadium and Ruffner Memorial Park. Shopping centers in the area include Patrick Street Plaza Shopping Center, Laidley Court Shopping Center and Plaza East Shopping Center. Visitors to Charleston can choose from Days Inn Charleston East WV, Motel 6 and Fairfield Inn Charleston for temporary stays in the area.