5121 – Authors and writers | Canada NOC |

5121 – Authors and writers

Authors and writers plan, research and write books, scripts, storyboards, plays, essays, speeches, manuals, specifications and other non-journalistic articles for publication or presentation. They are employed by advertising agencies, governments, large corporations, private consulting firms, publishing firms, multimedia/new-media companies and other establishments, or they may be self-employed.


Index of titles

Example titles

  • Ad writer
  • Advertising copywriter
  • Advertising writer
  • Author
  • Biographer
  • Copywriter
  • Crossword puzzle maker
  • Designer and script writer
  • Dialogue writer
  • Dubbing dialogue writer
  • Essayist
  • Feature writer
  • Fiction writer
  • Game, CD-ROM or Web critic
  • Ghost writer
  • Handbook writer
  • Help file developer
  • Humorist-author
  • Interactive media writer
  • Lexicographer
  • Literary writer
  • Manual writer
  • Medical writer
  • Multimedia author
  • Multimedia script writer
  • Multimedia writer
  • New media writer
  • Novelist
  • On-line reference developer
  • Playwright
  • Poet
  • Programmed-instruction writer
  • Publicity writer
  • Radio writer
  • Rewriter
  • Scientific writer
  • Screen writer
  • Script and dialogue writer
  • Script writer
  • Self-instruction manual writer
  • Serial story writer
  • Serial writer
  • Short story writer
  • Specifications writer
  • Specifications writer (except construction)
  • Speech writer
  • Sports writer – novels and books
  • Standards writer
  • Storyboarder
  • Support materials writer
  • Technical writer
  • Technical writer – aeronautics
  • Technical writer – chemical processing
  • Technical writer – electronics equipment
  • Technical writer – pharmaceutical industry
  • Teleplay writer – screenwriter
  • Television writer
  • Writer

Main duties

This group performs some or all of the following duties:
Novelists, playwrights, script writers, poets and other creative writers
  • Conceive and write novels, plays, scripts, poetry and other material for publication or presentation
  • May conduct research to establish factual content and to obtain other necessary information.
Technical writers
  • Analyze material, such as specifications, notes and drawings and write manuals, user guides and other documents to explain clearly and concisely the installation, operation and maintenance of software and electronic, mechanical and other equipment.
  • Study and determine selling features of products and services and write text for advertisements and commercials.

Authors and writers may specialize in a particular subject or type of writing.

Employment requirements

  • Technical writers usually require a university degree in the area of specialization, such as computer science or engineering.
  • Copywriters usually require a university degree or college diploma in French, English, marketing, advertising or another discipline.
  • Creative writing programs are offered by universities and colleges.
  • Talent and ability, as demonstrated by a portfolio of work, are important hiring criteria.
  • Membership in a guild or union related to the occupation may be required.


  • Editors (5122)
  • Journalists (5123)
  • Professional occupations in advertising, marketing and public relations (1123)
  • Song writers (in 5132 Conductors, composers and arrangers)
  • Translators, terminologists and interpreters (5125)