Is It OK If Writing Is Also Your Day Job? - Writer's Digest

Is It OK If Writing Is Also Your Day Job?

Publish date:
Image placeholder title

It's something I've often said to young writers: Study or work at anything but writing. Go lead a separate life, and learn or do something that will enrich whatever you end up writing later.

In the latest Glimmer Train bulletin, Iowa grad Anna North offers a different and compelling perspective. Here's a snippet:

I started writing nonfiction for pay in college, and I quickly found it a welcome escape from the sucking quagmire of uncertainty that was (and for me, often still is) fiction. Some writers find storytelling easier than the expository form, but in journalism and criticism I found a welcome structure and predictability.

If I put a certain amount of effort into a nonfiction piece, I was reasonably sure it would come out all right—I could sink a year into a novel and end up with nothing. And so I freelanced for magazines and newspapers throughout college, and in grad school I began writing for the blog Jezebel, where I still work.

Go read the full piece.


Three Keys to Crafting Chemistry Between Characters

Romance author Michelle Major explains her three go-to tips for ensuring your characters have believable chemistry.

Saving Money on Your Screenwriting Career

Take Two: Saving Money on Your Screenwriting Career

No one wants to break the bank to learn how to write a screenplay. Jeanne Veillette Bowerman shares practical tips on saving money on the pursuit of a screenwriting career.


10 Epic Quotes From Watership Down, by Richard Adams

Here are 10 epic quotes from Watership Down, by Richard Adams. The story of a group of rabbits who escape an impending danger to find a new home, Watership Down is filled with moments of survival, faith, friendship, fear, and hope.

WD Poetic Form Challenge

WD Poetic Form Challenge: Quintilla Winner

Learn the winner and Top 10 list for the Writer’s Digest Poetic Form Challenge for the quintilla.


Plot Twist Story Prompts: Fight or Flight

Every good story needs a nice (or not so nice) turn or two to keep it interesting. This week, it's fighting time.


Vintage WD: 10 Rules for Suspense Fiction

John Grisham once admitted that this article from 1973 helped him write his thrillers. In it, author Brian Garfield shares his go-to advice for creating great suspense fiction.


The Chaotically Seductive Path to Persuasive Copy

In this article, author, writing coach, and copywriter David Pennington teaches you the simple secrets of excellent copywriting.

Grinnell_Literary Techniques

Using Literary Techniques in Narrative Journalism

In this article, author Dustin Grinnell examines Jon Franklin’s award-winning article Mrs. Kelly’s Monster to help writers master the use of literary techniques in narrative journalism.

Poetry Prompt

Wednesday Poetry Prompts: 545

Every Wednesday, Robert Lee Brewer shares a prompt and an example poem to get things started on the Poetic Asides blog. This week, write a cleaning poem.