Authors

ANZSCO ID 212211

Overview

Snapshot

Employed
3,300
Future Growth
N/A
Weekly Earnings
N/A
Full-Time Share
50%
Female Share
62%
Average age
47

Summary

Authors produce literary or other written work for publication or performance.

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

Formal qualifications are not essential to work as an Author. While most Authors have a university qualification, only some have qualifications in related areas such as writing and literature.

Tasks

  • Creates and develops ideas and themes for written works, such as novels, plays, musicals, screen productions, educational texts, information texts and multimedia products.

  • Researches subject matter through original and secondary materials, interviews and other media.

  • Plans, organises and writes material.

Characteristics

Job Type
Professionals
Skill Level
Very high skill
ANZSCO Occupation group
Unemployment Rate
n/a
Industries
Pathway(s)
  • University
  • Vocational Education and Training (VET)
  • Informal or on-the-job
Interests
  • Analytical
  • Creative
Physical Demand
  • Sedentary

Outlook

Employment Outlook

The NSC produces employment projections to show where likely future job opportunities may be. Employment projections data are only produced for occupations at the broad four digit Australian and New Zealand Standard Classification of Occupations (ANZSCO) level. While data are not available for this occupation, projections data are available for the parent occupation, Authors, and Book and Script Editors, under the outlook section.


Earnings and hours

Working arrangements

  • Around 50% of people employed as Authors work full-time hours, in all their jobs combined. This is 16 percentage points below the all jobs average (66%).

    Full-time workers work an average of 46 hours per week in their main job. This is similar to the all jobs average (44 hours per week).

    Sources:Full-time share and full-time hours: ABS, 2016 Census, customised report. Compared to the all jobs average.


Industries

Main industries

1
Arts and Recreation Services
54.6%
2
Information Media and Telecommunications
18.3%
3
Education and Training
5.3%
4
Professional, Scientific and Technical Services
5.1%
5
Other industries
11.9%

Regions

Employment across Australia

NSW

38.9% All occupations: 31.6%

VIC

28.4% All occupations: 25.6%

QLD

16.6% All occupations: 20.0%

SA

4.3% All occupations: 7.0%

WA

6.1% All occupations: 10.8%

TAS

2.5% All occupations: 2.0%

NT

0.5% All occupations: 1.0%

ACT

2.6% All occupations: 1.9%

Employment by State and Territory (% Share)

State Authors All Jobs Average
NSW 38.9 31.6
VIC 28.4 25.6
QLD 16.6 20.0
SA 4.3 7.0
WA 6.1 10.8
TAS 2.5 2.0
NT 0.5 1.0
ACT 2.6 1.9



Worker profile

Age and gender

Age In Years
47
All Jobs Average is 40
Female Share
62%
All Jobs Average is 48%
  • The median age of Authors is 47 years. This is higher than the all jobs average of 40 years.

    A large share of workers are aged 45 to 54 years.

    Females make up 62% of the workforce. This is 14 percentage points above the all jobs average of 48%.

    Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Age profile and gender share compared to the all jobs average.

Age Profile (% Share)

Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Age profile of workers in this job compared to the all jobs average.
Age Bracket Authors All Jobs Average
15-19 0.7 5.0
20-24 3.1 9.3
25-34 16.2 22.9
35-44 22.6 22.0
45-54 23.9 21.6
55-59 10.2 9.0
60-64 7.8 6.0
65 and Over 15.6 4.2
Median Age 47 40

Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Age profile of workers in this job compared to the all jobs average.


Employment Pathways

Education, training and experience

Formal qualifications are not essential to work as an Author. While most Authors have a university qualification, only some have qualifications in related areas such as writing and literature.

Visit

  • Course Seeker to search and compare higher education courses.
  • ComparED to compare undergraduate and postgraduate student experiences and outcomes.
  • My Skills to compare Vocational Education and Training (VET) courses, providers and student outcomes.

Highest Level of Education (% Share)

Source: 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 Qualification Authors All Jobs Average
Post Graduate/Graduate Diploma or Graduate Certificate 29.6 10.1
Bachelor degree 42.7 21.8
Advanced Diploma/Diploma 9.1 11.6
Certificate III/IV 3.9 21.1
Year 12 10.9 18.1
Year 11 1.2 4.8
Year 10 and below 2.5 12.5

Source: 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.


Skills and Knowledge

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

Skills

Skills can be improved through training or experience.

  • 87%

    Writing

    Writing things for co-workers or customers.

  • 70%

    Reading comprehension

    Reading work related information.

  • 61%

    Active listening

    Listening to others, not interrupting, and asking good questions.

  • 57%

    Active learning

    Being able to use what you have learnt to solve problems now and again in the future.

  • 55%

    Speaking

    Talking to others.

  • 54%

    Critical thinking

    Thinking about the pros and cons of different ways to solve a problem.

  • 54%

    Monitoring

    Keeping track of how well work is progressing so you can make changes or improvements.

  • 52%

    Complex problem solving

    Noticing a problem and figuring out the best way to solve it.

  • 52%

    Social perceptiveness

    Understanding why people react the way they do.

  • 52%

    Persuasion

    Talking people into changing their minds or their behaviour.

  • 50%

    Judgment and decision making

    Figuring out the pros and cons of different options and choosing the best one.

  • 45%

    Negotiation

    Bringing people together and trying to sort out their differences.

  • 43%

    Time management

    Managing your own and other peoples' time to get work done.

  • 43%

    Coordination with others

    Being adaptable and coordinating work with other people.

  • 43%

    Learning strategies

    Figuring out the best way to teach or learn something new.

  • 39%

    Instructing

    Teaching people how to do something.

  • 34%

    Serving others

    Looking for ways to help people.

  • 30%

    Management of financial resources

    Figuring out how money is needed to do something, and keeping track of the money that's being spent.

  • 30%

    Systems analysis

    Figuring out how a system should work and how changes in conditions, operations, and the environment will affect it.

  • 27%

    Operations analysis

    Understanding needs and product requirements to create a design.


Knowledge

These are important topics, subjects or knowledge areas.

  • 85%

    English language

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

  • 83%

    Communications and media

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

  • 68%

    Fine arts

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

  • 63%

    Sales and marketing

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

  • 61%

    Philosophy and theology

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

  • 59%

    Sociology and anthropology

    Group behaviour and dynamics, societal trends and influences, human migrations, ethnicity, cultures and their history and origins.

  • 57%

    Clerical

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

  • 57%

    Psychology

    Human behaviour; differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; research methods; assessing and treating disorders.

  • 51%

    Computers and electronics

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

  • 47%

    History and archeology

    Events of the past, their causes, how we learn about them, and how they influence the way we live today.

  • 40%

    Law and government

    How our laws and courts work. Government rules and regulations, and the political system.

  • 40%

    Geography

    Describing land, sea, and air, including their physical characteristics, locations, how they work together, and the location of plant, animal, and human life.

  • 37%

    Foreign language

    Foreign (non-English) language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition and grammar, and pronunciation.

  • 36%

    Customer and personal service

    Understanding customer needs, providing good quality service, and measuring customer satisfaction.

  • 33%

    Education and training

    Curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.

  • 32%

    Administration and management

    Business principles involved in strategic planning, leadership, and coordinating people and resources.

  • 27%

    Economics and accounting

    Economics and accounting, the financial markets, banking and checking and reporting of financial data.

  • 24%

    Production and processing

    Raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and ways of making and distributing goods.

  • 23%

    Mathematics

    Arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, or statistics.

  • 21%

    Telecommunications

    Transmission, broadcasting, switching, control, and operation of telecommunications systems.


Abilities

Workers use these physical and mental abilities..

  • 71%

    Written expression

    Write in a way that people can understand.

  • 66%

    Originality

    Come up with unusual or clever ideas, or creative ways to solve a problem.

  • 61%

    Brainstorming

    Come up with a number of ideas about a topic, even if the ideas aren't very good.

  • 61%

    Written comprehension

    Read and understand written information.

  • 61%

    Oral expression

    Communicate by speaking.

  • 59%

    Oral comprehension

    Listen to and understand what people say.

  • 57%

    Near vision

    See details that are up-close (within a few feet).

  • 57%

    Deductive reasoning

    Use general rules to find answers or solve problems logically.

  • 57%

    Speech clarity

    Speak clearly so others can understand you.

  • 54%

    Inductive reasoning

    Use lots of detailed information to come up with answers or make general rules.

  • 54%

    Problem spotting

    Notice when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong, even if you can't solve the problem.

  • 52%

    Sorting or ordering

    Order or arrange things in a pattern or sequence (e.g., numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).

  • 50%

    Speech recognition

    Identify and understand the speech of another person.

  • 48%

    Categorising

    Come up with different ways of grouping things.

  • 46%

    Visualization

    Imagine how something will look after it is moved around or changed.

  • 43%

    Finger dexterity

    Put together small parts with your fingers.

  • 41%

    Far vision

    See details that are far away.

  • 41%

    Flexibility of closure

    See a pattern (a figure, object, word, or sound) hidden in other distracting material.

  • 41%

    Selective attention

    Pay attention to something without being distracted.

  • 39%

    Speed of recognition

    Quickly make sense of and organize things you can see like letters, numbers, pictures, or other things.


Activities

These are kinds of activities workers regularly do in this job.

  • 95%

    Thinking creatively

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

  • 71%

    Planning and prioritising work

    Deciding on goals and putting together a detailed plan to get the work done.

  • 70%

    Explaining things to people

    Helping people to understand and use information.

  • 70%

    Building good relationships

    Building good working relationships and keeping them over time.

  • 69%

    Keeping your knowledge up-to-date

    Keeping up-to-date with technology and new ideas.

  • 68%

    Researching and investigating

    Looking for, getting and understanding different kinds of information.

  • 67%

    Making decisions and solving problems

    Using information to work out the best solution and solve problems.

  • 64%

    Communicating with the public

    Giving information to the public, business or government by telephone, in writing, or in person.

  • 64%

    Looking for changes over time

    Comparing objects, actions, or events. Looking for differences between them or changes over time.

  • 63%

    Assessing and evaluating things

    Working out the value, importance, or quality of things, services or people.

  • 62%

    Documenting or recording information

    Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.

  • 60%

    Influencing people

    Convincing people to buy something or to change their minds or actions.

  • 53%

    Communicating within a team

    Giving information to co-workers by telephone, in writing, or in person.

  • 51%

    Monitoring people, processes and things

    Checking objects, actions, or events, and keeping an eye out for problems.

  • 50%

    Collecting and organising information

    Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or checking information or data.

  • 50%

    Making sense of information and ideas

    Looking at, working with, and understanding data or information.

  • 50%

    Providing office support

    Doing day-to-day office work such as filing and processing paperwork.

  • 50%

    Scheduling work and activities

    Working out the timing of events, programs, and activities, as well as the work of others.

  • 49%

    Coming up with systems and processes

    Deciding on goals and figuring out what you need to do to achieve them.

  • 44%

    Working with computers

    Using computers to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.


Interests and demands

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.

Interests

Interests are the style or type of work we prefer to do. All interest areas are shown below.

  • 100%

    Creative

    Working with forms, designs and patterns. Often need self-expression and can be done without following rules.

  • 71%

    Analytical

    Ideas and thinking. Searching for facts and figuring out problems in your head.

  • 52%

    Enterprising

    Starting up and carrying out projects. Leading people and making many decisions. Sometimes require risk taking and often deal with business.

  • 33%

    Helping

    Working with people. Helping or providing service to others.

  • 29%

    Administrative

    Following set procedures and routines. Working with numbers and details more than with ideas, usually following rules.

  • 24%

    Practical

    Practical, hands-on work. Often with plants and animals, or materials like wood, tools, and machinery.


Values

Work values are important to a person’s feeling of satisfaction. All six values are shown below.
  • 86%

    Achievement

    Results oriented. Workers are able to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment.

  • 81%

    Independence

    Work alone and make decisions. Workers are able to try out their own ideas, make decisions on their own, and work with little or no supervision.

  • 71%

    Recognition

    Advancement and the potential to lead. Workers are recognised for the work that they do, they may give directions and instructions to others, and they are looked up to in their company and their community.

  • 69%

    Working conditions

    Job security and good working conditions. There is usually a steady flow of interesting work, and the pay and conditions are generally good.

  • 38%

    Relationships

    Serve and work with others. Workers usually get along well with each other, do things to help other people, and are rarely pressured to do things that go against their sense of right and wrong.

  • 29%

    Support

    Supportive management that stands behind employees. Workers are treated fairly by their company, they are supported by management, and have supervisors who train them well.


Demands

The physical and social demands that workers face most often are shown below:
  • 99%

    Freedom to make decisions

    Have freedom to make decision on your own.

  • 96%

    Competition

    Compete with others, or be aware of competitive pressures.

  • 96%

    Unstructured work

    Have freedom to decide on tasks, priorities, and goals.

  • 89%

    Spend time sitting

    Spend time sitting at work.

  • 88%

    Electronic mail

    Use electronic mail.

  • 79%

    Making repetitive motions

    Spend time making repetitive motions.

  • 79%

    Telephone

    Talk on the telephone.

  • 78%

    Being exact or accurate

    Be very exact or highly accurate.

  • 73%

    Using your hands to handle, control, or feel

    Spend time using your hands to handle, control, or feel objects, tools or controls.

  • 70%

    Impact of decisions

    Make decisions that have a large impact on other people.

  • 68%

    Letters and memos

    Write letters and memos.

  • 67%

    Time pressure

    Work to strict deadlines.

  • 66%

    Repeating same tasks

    Repeat the same tasks or activities (e.g., key entry) over and over, without stopping.

  • 64%

    Indoors, heat controlled

    Work indoors with access to heating or cooling.

  • 61%

    Contact with people

    Have contact with people by telephone, face-to-face, or any other way.

  • 61%

    Frequent decision making

    Frequently make decisions that impact other people.

  • 59%

    Face-to-face discussions

    Talk with people face-to-face.

  • 50%

    Teamwork

    Work with people in a group or team.

  • 49%

    Public speaking

    Talk to a group of people.

  • 48%

    Contact with the public

    Work with customers or the public.

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.


Links and downloads

Back to top