If you're not yet known as a writer, you are probably wondering how to land one of the professional writing jobs you actually want. It can be very helpful to get a mentor or take practical writing classes when they are being taught by an industry professional. You may need to start small and write material for up-and-coming comedians or amateur theater groups to build a name and reputation. Many programs are happy to receive unsolicited scripts for episodes in series or skits in comedy shows. If you have completed scripts or manuscripts and are confident they are of a professional standard, you can get professional advice to confirm this and find yourself an agent. A good agent will do a lot of the ''pavement pounding'' for you and try to sell your work. He or she will also try to find you temporary or permanent writing gigs. Literary agents are very busy people, so they don't just take on anyone. However, if you can prove your worth and know where you want to go in your career, they can provide invaluable support.
TV writing jobs are among the most sought after by writers wanting the security of a regular income. One of the benefits of working with a team of other writers is the intellectual stimulation and emotional support it provides. Some writers find it difficult to go back to solitary writing after the experience. Rarely are top level writing jobs advertised in newspapers or journals. People get to know people in the industry and writers whose work is valued are usually invited to join a team. This is not to say you can never apply for these jobs, so it still pays to keep your eyes open for job advertisements.
Training specifically as a scriptwriter for television and film at a college or other respected training institution can open doors for internships and graduate employment. This way you can work your way up in an industry otherwise very difficult to get into. However, if you are older and do not see this as a viable option, consider taking night classes and reading everything you can about the industry. Some writers' groups specialize in specific genres, so if you can find a decent group specializing in script writing, it may be helpful to join one — with the stress on ''may be.'' There are a lot of dreamers and would-be writers in the world who are not prepared to learn the skills or take the steps necessary to land the jobs they want. Hanging around people like these can kill your own dreams.
Content writing jobs for websites are generally informational in nature; however, it is possible to find some such jobs that require creative writing skills. Online magazines which publish short stories and poetry regularly need new submissions and some are willing to pay quite well for it. Freelance job sites also regularly advertise creative writing jobs such as for ghostwriters for novels, short stories, or scripts. The downside with ghostwriting, of course, is that you get absolutely no credit for the work you have done and can never claim it as your own. This may be worth doing if you are being paid enough to sell all claims to your own work, but on these freelance sites, clients tend to want an awful lot for very little. If you like the idea of ghost-writing, you may want to consider creating your own business and charging reasonable rates.
Some Internet sites allow you to write creatively and broker your stories online to potential purchasers. It pays to be constantly on the lookout for new ways to market your work. Many writers use a pen name online for different types of writing styles, and this can certainly work to build up specialist reputations in different market segments; however, it can work also against you when you want to prove your writing experience under your own name. If you are going to use an alias, just use one. You need to make it easy for potential publishers or employers to find evidence of your writing history and ability.
Finding good creative jobs is easy; landing one is something else again. The good news is that no longer do writers have to eke out a struggling, lonely existence as they put words to paper. There is a plethora of opportunities in modern society for good writers. It is up to you to prepare yourself for them and go after them with a single-minded focus.