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

    You can work as an Author, or Book or Script Editor without formal qualifications, however, they may be useful. Authors, and Book and Script Editors often have university qualifications.

    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

    More about Authors, and Book and Script Editors

    All Authors, and Book and Script Editors

    All Authors, and Book and Script Editors

    • $1,600 Weekly Pay
    • Strong Future Growth
    • Lower unemployment Unemployment
    • 7,500 workers Employment Size
    • Very high skill Skill level rating
    • 51% Full-Time Full-Time Share
    • 45 hours Average full-time
    • 47 years Average age
    • 67% female Gender Share

    The number of people working as Authors, and Book and Script Editors (in their main job) grew very strongly over the past 5 years and is expected to grow strongly over the next 5 years:
    from 7,500 in 2018 to 8,600 by 2023.
    Job openings can come from new jobs being created, but most come from turnover (workers leaving).
    There are likely to be around 5,000 job openings over 5 years (that's about 1,000 a year).

    • Size: This is a small occupation.
    • Unemployment: Unemployment was below average in 2018.
    • Location: Authors, and Book and Script Editors work in many parts of Australia. New South Wales and Victoria have a large share of workers.
    • Industries: Most work in Arts and Recreation Services; Information Media and Telecommunications; and Professional, Scientific and Technical Services.
    • Earnings: Full-time workers on an adult wage earn around $1,600 per week (similar to the average of $1,460). Earnings tend to be lower when starting out and higher as experience grows.
    • Full-time: Around half work full-time (51%, less than the average of 66%), showing there are many opportunities to work part-time.
    • Hours: Full-time workers spend around 45 hours per week at work (compared to the average of 44 hours).
    • Age: The average age is 47 years (compared to the average of 40 years). Many workers are 45 years or older (55%).
    • Gender: 67% of workers are female (compared to the average of 48%).

    Employment Outlook

    Number of Workers

    Source: ABS Labour Force Survey, Department of Jobs and Small Business trend data to May 2018 and Department of Jobs and Small Business projections to 2023.
    YearNumber of Workers
    20085100
    20094500
    20108600
    20115500
    20129600
    20135500
    20149900
    20154600
    20166200
    20178100
    20187500
    20238600

    Weekly Earnings

    Weekly Earnings (Before Tax)

    Source: Based on ABS Survey of Employee Earnings and Hours (cat. no. 6306.0), May 2018, Customised Report. Median weekly total cash earnings for full-time non-managerial employees paid at the adult rate. Earnings are before tax and include amounts salary sacrificed. Earnings can vary greatly depending on the skills and experience of the worker and the demands of the role. These figures should be used as a guide only, not to determine a wage rate.
    EarningsAuthors, and Book and Script EditorsAll Jobs Average
    Full-Time Earnings16001460

    Main Industries

    Main Employing Industries (% Share)

    Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Industries are based on the Australian and New Zealand Standard Industrial Classification (ANZSIC 06).
    Main Employing IndustriesIndustry (% share)
    Arts and Recreation Services42.2
    Information Media and Telecommunications31.5
    Professional, Scientific and Technical Services6.3
    Education and Training6.0
    Other Industries14.0

    States and Territories

    • NSW

    • VIC

    • QLD

    • SA

    • TAS

    • NT

    • ACT

    Employment by State and Territory (% Share)

    Source: Based on Based on ABS Census 2016, 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
    NSW38.931.6
    VIC31.625.6
    QLD15.020.0
    SA4.17.0
    WA5.410.8
    TAS2.02.0
    NT0.41.0
    ACT2.61.9

    Age Profile

    Age Profile (% Share)

    Source: Based on Based on ABS Census 2016, 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
    15-190.5-5.05.0
    20-243.1-9.39.3
    25-3417.9-22.922.9
    35-4423.5-22.022.0
    45-5423.2-21.621.6
    55-5910.3-9.09.0
    60-648.0-6.06.0
    65 and Over13.5-4.24.2

    Education Level

    Highest Level of Education (% Share)

    Source: ABS, ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Highest qualification completed by workers in this job (in any field of study). 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 Certificate33.2-10.110.1
    Bachelor degree43.4-21.821.8
    Advanced Diploma/Diploma8.1-11.611.6
    Certificate III/IV3.2-21.121.1
    Year 129.4-18.118.1
    Year 110.9-4.84.8
    Year 10 and below1.7-12.512.5

    You can work as an Author, or Book or Script Editor without formal qualifications, however, they may be useful. Authors, and Book and Script Editors often have university qualifications.

    Membership with the Australian Society of Authors or Australian Writers' Guild may be useful.

    Thinking about study or training?

    Before starting a course, check it will provide you with the skills and qualifications you need.

    • Search and compare thousands of higher education courses, and their entry requirements from different institutions across Australia at Course Seeker website.
    • Compare undergraduate and postgraduate student experiences and outcomes on the QILT website.
    • Compare Vocational Education and Training (VET) courses, providers and student outcomes on the My Skills website.

    Or check out related courses on Job Outlook.

    Useful links and resources


    The course listings on this page are provided by Good Education Group.

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

    Filter Skills & Knowledge

    Knowledge

    These are important topics, subjects or knowledge areas.

    1. English Language

      85% Skill level

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

    2. Communications and Media

      83% Skill level

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

    3. Fine Arts

      68% Skill level

      Compose, produce, and perform works of music, dance, visual arts, drama, and sculpture.

    4. Sales and Marketing

      63% Skill level

      Showing, promoting, and selling including marketing strategy, product demonstration, sales techniques, and sales control systems.

    5. Philosophy and Theology

      61% Skill level

      Philosophical systems and religions, including their basic principles, values, ethics, ways of thinking, customs, practices, and impact on society.

    Occupational Information Network
    O*NET is a trademark of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration.
    The skills and importance ratings on this page are derived from the US Department of Labor O*NET Database Version 21.2, 27-3043.05 - Poets, Lyricists and Creative Writers.

    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.

    Filter Work Environment

    Demands

    The physical and social demands workers face most often are shown below.

    1. Freedom to Make Decisions

      99% Important

      How much freedom do you have to make decision on your own?

    2. Level of Competition

      96% Important

      To what extent does this job require the worker to compete or to be aware of competitive pressures?

    3. Structured versus Unstructured Work

      96% Important

      How much freedom do you have to decide on tasks, priorities, and goals?

    4. Spend Time Sitting

      89% Important

      How much time do you spend sitting?

    5. Electronic Mail

      88% Important

      How often do you use electronic mail?

    Occupational Information Network
    O*NET is a trademark of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration.
    The skills and importance ratings on this page are derived from the US Department of Labor O*NET Database Version 21.2, 27-3043.05 - Poets, Lyricists and Creative Writers.

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