A magazine/website editor is responsible for the quality of the written content of a magazine or website. The editor commissions articles and features on the subject area, and ensures the standard and style of writing is suitable.
Editors are expected to have a comprehensive knowledge of their subject, whether that is cosmetics, travel, video games or business. A background in journalism is essential, as is a high standard of written English.
- Commissioning articles, reviews, and features
- Outsourcing to freelance journalists
- Coming up with ideas for features
- Managing a team of in-house writers
- Staff meetings on content, direction, and planning
- Editing submissions – checking for style and content
- Researching the latest events and changes in the subject of the magazine
- Networking and attending conferences, events, and seminars
- Writing content for the magazine
- Proof-reading the entire publication before it goes to print
Editing is a natural progression from a role such as staff writer. Experience as a freelance journalist is also valid. Using your contacts and networking wisely will help you land a job as an editor. Promotions to the role of editor often take place in house.
- University degree is preferable, but not always essential
- Training courses (such as those operated by the NCTJ)
- Considerable work experience as a journalist
- An excellent standard of English
- The ability to be organized, motivational, and creative
- Able to work to tight deadlines
- Salaries vary depending on employer, type of magazine (weekly, monthly etc) or website and subject
- The largest national publications offer the highest salaries
- Average starting salary is around £24,000
- Salaries can progress quickly, with experienced editors often earning £40k+
- Overtime if sometimes necessary
- May require weekend/evening work, particularly when deadlines approach
- Office-based work, with occasional travel (sometimes international travel)
The position of editor is a natural step up from staff/senior writer. There are various types of editors, including features editor, commissioning editor, deputy/assistant editor, and main editor.
A sideways move into a new magazine or field related to editing (such as reporting, newspaper editing, or another type of magazine journalism) can enhance your career. You can also progress into a more senior role with a publishing house, or become a publisher yourself.
- Haymarket Publishing
- Future Publishing
- Other major publishing houses
- Web-journalism is also a viable industry
- Freelance journalist
- Reporter/Newspaper journalist