As digital connections proliferated, some bibliophiles worried this would sound the death knell for the humble book. In fact, the opposite is true. Content is still king and as more people spend increasing amounts of time online, reading – and words – are experiencing a resurgence, even if the traditional format of a book is evolving.
This is good news for those who find delight, solace or inspiration buried between the pages. Not only is reading making a comeback, but more than ever there are ways to read and (make enough money to) eat. Here are five job suggestions for how to read, write and earn a living.
This one is for the avid readers. Starting off typically as an editorial assistant, these editors work for publishing houses and literary agencies to sift through manuscripts – the good, the bad and the ugly – to discover the next publishing sensation. Editors need a keen eye for good writing as well as what will be a commercial hit. Harry Potter author JK Rowling’s first novel in the series was rejected 12 times. Other key skills for the job include good negotiating chops and the ability to handle delicate egos – of authors and other agents.
Only storytellers and information-hounds need apply. Content editors take dry information or a person’s unassembled thoughts and turn it into an actual story, op-ed or report to provide something of value to the reader – either to entertain or inform. Plenty of organisations need content editors, from traditional publishing outlets to the marketing teams of big corporates. In the latter, well written words are needed for everything from selling consumer products and services, to press releases or writing informative articles. Either way, excellent spelling, punctuation and grammar are essential.
Check content editor jobs
Why keep your passion for reading and literature to yourself? Many people deepened their love of books at college or university, so consider passing it on to the next generation. Lecturers are always reading, whether to create a lesson plan, to find new texts to study or to keep up with the latest research in their academic discipline. Competition to become a lecturer is usually fierce, but at the top of your field it can also be well-compensated.
Find lecturer openings here
The legal profession may not immediately spring to mind when you think of reading, but it is certainly something lawyers do a lot of. Lawyers need to be well-versed with law and statute books. In addition, they need to be hawk-eyed when it comes to the detail, and grammar, of contracts where even one misplaced comma can make all the difference. In March, a lack of punctuation helped one group of dairy drivers in America win a $10m case against their company about overtime pay.
Apply for lawyer openings here
While Google’s Pixel Buds may be trying to revolutionise real-time translations, anyone who has used Google Translate will confirm that we are still a long way off from word-perfect, culturally-nuanced renditions from one language to another. Translators – whether in publishing or in companies – are more than just dictionaries. They need to be aware of cultural touchpoints and social context as well as being wordsmiths to make sure the meaning and spirit of the original context is conveyed as accurately as possible.
Find translator jobs here