Columnists write opinion pieces for publication in newspapers or magazines. Some columnists work for syndicates, which are organizations that sell articles to many media at once.

Columnists can be generalists who write about whatever strikes them on any topic. Most columnists focus on a specialty, such as government, politics, local issues, health, humor, sports, gossip, or other themes.

Most newspapers employ local columnists or run columns from syndicates. Some syndicated columnists work out of their homes or private offices.

Quick Facts
Duties Write opinion pieces for publication in newspapers, magazines, or other publications
Alternate Title(s) None
Salary Range $25,000 to $100,000+
Employment Prospects Fair
Advancement Prospects Fair
Work Environment Indoors/Outdoors
Best Geographical Location(s) Opportunities are available throughout the country
Education and Training
  • Bachelor's Degree
Related School Subjects
  • Computer Science
  • English
  • Journalism
Experience Previous writing experience required
  • Computer
  • Research
  • Writing
Personality Traits
  • Creative
  • Curious
  • Outgoing
Licensure/Certification None
Special Requirements None
Career Ladder
  • Syndicated Columnist, or Editor, or Foreign Correspondent
  • Columnist
  • Reporter or Freelance Writer

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