Authors, and Book and Script Editors write, edit and evaluate literary works for publication and scripts for film, television, radio and stage productions.

A Bachelor Degree or higher, or at least 5 years of relevant experience is usually needed. High levels of creative talent or personal commitment and interest are also important.

Tasks

  • creating and developing ideas and themes for written works, such as novels, plays, musicals, screen productions, educational texts, information texts and multimedia products
  • researching subject matter through original and secondary materials, interviews and other media
  • planning, organising and writing material
  • reviewing and evaluating manuscripts of novels, biographies, short stories, poems, educational texts and other books, and ensuring coherence of style and development of theme, plot and characterisation
  • advising publishers about potential of works for publication and conditions of publication contract
  • negotiating publication details such as royalties, publication dates and numbers of copies to be printed
  • reviewing and assessing stories and other material for film, television, radio and stage productions
  • directing the preparation of scripts to be read by announcers to introduce and connect parts of musicals, news, sports and special events programs

Job Titles

  • Author
  • Book or Script Editor
  • Author

    Produces literary or other written work for publication or performance.

    Specialisations: Novelist, Playwright, Poet, Screenwriter, Script Writer

  • Book or Script Editor

    Evaluates manuscripts of books or scripts to determine suitability for publication or production, and edits and supervises material in preparation for publication or for production on film, television, radio or stage.

    Specialisations: Script Coordinator

Fast Facts

  • Avg. Weekly Pay

    Unavailable
  • Future Growth

    very strong
  • Skill Level

    Bachelor Degree or higher
  • Employment Size

    4,500
  • Unemployment

    below average
  • Male Share

    30.9%
  • Female Share

    69.1%
  • Full-Time Share

    40.6%

Find Vacancies

This is a very small occupation employing 4500 workers. Over the past 5 years the number of jobs has fallen.
Very strong growth is expected in the future. New jobs and turnover from workers leaving may create up to 5,000 job openings over the 5 years to 2020.

  • Authors, and Book and Script Editors work in most parts of Australia.
  • They mainly work in: Arts and Recreation Services; Information Media and Telecommunications; and Professional, Scientific and Technical Services.
  • Part-time work is very common. Full-time workers, on average, work 45.3 hours per week (compared to the all jobs average of 40 hours).
  • The workforce is fairly mature. The average age is 54 years (compared to the all jobs average of 40 years) and around 8 in 10 workers are aged 45 years or older.
  • Around 7 in 10 workers are female.
  • In 2016, the unemployment rate was below average.

Employment Outlook

Number of Workers

Source: ABS Labour Force Survey, Department of Employment trend data to November 2015 and Department of Employment projections to 2020.
YearNumber of Workers
20056500
20065300
20077700
20084900
20097600
20107600
20114800
20128000
20136400
20149600
20154500
20205600

Weekly Earnings

Full-time Earnings

All Jobs Average

Weekly Earnings (before tax)

No data is available for the selected graph for this Occupation.

Hours

Weekly Hours Worked

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2016, Cat. No. 6291.0.55.003: Customised Report. Hours actually worked by people who usually work full-time, and share of employment by full-time and part-time status, for this job compared to the all jobs average.
CategoryAuthors, and Book and Script EditorsAll Jobs Average
Full-time40.668.4
Part-time59.431.6
Average Weekly Hours (full-time)45.340.0

Main Industries

Top Industries

Main Employing Industries (% share)

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2016, Cat. No. 6291.0.55.003: Customised Report. Industries are based on the Australian and New Zealand Standard Industrial Classification (ANZSIC 06).
Main Employing IndustriesIndustry (% share)
Arts and Recreation Services50.3
Information Media and Telecommunications28.9
Professional, Scientific and Technical Services8.9
Health Care and Social Assistance4.3
Other Industries7.6

States and Territories

  • NSW

  • VIC

  • QLD

  • SA

  • TAS

  • NT

  • ACT

Employment by State and Territory (% share)

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2016, Cat. No. 6291.0.55.003: Customised Report. Share of workers across Australian States and Territories, in this job compared to the all jobs average.
StateAuthors, and Book and Script EditorsAll Jobs Average
NSW32.931.8
VIC35.425.5
QLD15.119.8
SA4.26.8
WA7.711.2
TAS1.32.0
NT0.01.1
ACT3.31.8

Age Profile

Age Profile (% share)

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2016, Cat. No. 6291.0.55.003: Customised Report. Age profile of workers in this job compared to the all jobs average.
Age BracketAuthors, and Book and Script EditorsAll Jobs AverageAll Jobs Average
15-192.8-5.45.4
20-241.6-9.99.9
25-342.6-23.423.4
35-4415.5-21.721.7
45-5432.2-21.121.1
55-599.0-8.78.7
60-6424.8-5.95.9
65 and Over11.6-3.83.8

Gender

Male Share

Female Share

Gender (% share)

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2016, Cat. No. 6291.0.55.003: Customised Report. Male and female share of employment in this job compared to the all jobs average.
CategoryAuthors, and Book and Script EditorsCategoryAll Jobs Average
Males30.9Males53.6
Females69.1Females46.4

Education Level

Top Education Levels

Highest Level of Education (% share)

Source: ABS, Education and Work (2016). Findings based on use of ABS TableBuilder data. Highest qualification completed by workers in this job (in any field of study). Skill level requirements can change over time, the qualifications needed by new workers might be different from the qualifications of workers already in the job.
Type of QualificationAuthors, and Book and Script EditorsAll Jobs AverageAll Jobs Average
Post Graduate/Graduate Diploma or Graduate Certificate26.3-8.68.6
Bachelor degree73.7-17.917.9
Advanced Diploma/Diploma0.0-10.110.1
Certificate III/IV0.0-18.918.9
Year 120.0-18.718.7
Years 11 & 100.0-17.717.7
Below Year 100.0-8.18.1

A Bachelor Degree or higher, or at least 5 years of relevant experience is usually needed. High levels of creative talent or personal commitment and interest are also important.

If you are interested in this style of work, there are a wide range of training options available that could lead to this or a similar job.
The pathway that is right for you will depend on your skills and interests.

  • myfuture (login required) and the Good Education Group provide information about courses at all levels.
  • My Skills is the national directory of Vocational Education and Training (VET) and provides information about nationally recognised training and training providers that deliver it.

It is a good idea to speak to industry bodies, employers, and workers to learn more about the skills and qualifications you will need.

Employers look for Authors, and Book and Script Editors who have strong attention to detail, can communicate clearly and are organised.

Knowledge

The topics, subjects, or knowledge areas workers rate as most important are shown below.

  1. English Language

    98% Important

    English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.

  2. Communications and Media

    94% Important

    Media production, communication, and dissemination. Includes written, spoken, and visual media.

  3. Computers and Electronics

    68% Important

    Circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.

  4. Clerical

    58% Important

    Word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and other office work.

  5. Education and Training

    57% Important

    Teaching and course design.

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O*NET is a trademark of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration. The information on this site is derived from the US Department of Labor O*NET Database Version 21.2

Learn about the daily activities, and physical and social demands faced by workers. Explore the values and work styles that workers rate as most important.

Activities

The work activities workers rate as most important are shown below.

  1. Getting Information

    95% Important

    Looking for, getting and understanding different kinds of information.

  2. Interacting With Computers

    95% Important

    Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.

  3. Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Staff

    88% Important

    Giving information to supervisors, co-workers, and staff by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.

  4. Thinking Creatively

    86% Important

    Using your own ideas to developing, designing, or creating something new.

  5. Building Good Relationships

    86% Important

    Building and keeping constructive and cooperative working relationships with others.

Occupational Information Network Editors Opens in a new window
O*NET is a trademark of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration. The information on this site is derived from the US Department of Labor O*NET Database Version 21.2

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