March 28, 2011

How to Create a Writing Portfolio

If you want to find a writing job or work in any kind of position that requires you to have writing skills, prospective employers will likely want to see your writing portfolio. The writing portfolio you present is just as important if not more important than your resume. Here are some tips you can use to put together the perfect portfolio to help you find a writing job:

  • Show a wide variety of pieces. Most writing jobs will have you working in a number of areas, so your writing portfolio should include pieces that show a wide range of skills.
  • Fill in missing pieces with faux samples. Don’t have experience writing press releases? Write a mock one to include in your portfolio if the job you want will have you writing them.
  • Show a range of writing styles. You want to have some pieces that are more objective and others pieces that are more opinionated or stylistic.
  • Spell check everything – and then spell check it again!
  • Include information about when and where the piece was published, if relevant.
  • Make both digital and hard copies. Some people would rather you email your portfolio while others want to look through a binder.
  • Make sure your pieces are formatted well. You want them to be pleasing to the eye as well as well-written.
  • Have others read over your sample pieces. Not only can they give you feedback, but they can also point out any typos that you may have missed.

In addition, if you’re looking for a writing job, you might want to create a personal website so you can put your portfolio online. This is great for you if you want to become a freelance writer and look for gig to build a client list, or you can also use it if you’re looking for a full-time writing job with a newspaper, magazine, advertising agency, or other type of company. Remember to include your social networking profiles (Twitter, Facebook, and especially LinkedIn) as part of your writing portfolio website, and also list your email and phone number so potential employers can contact you.

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