Magazine journalists research and write news articles and features for all sorts of publications.

What does a magazine journalist do?

Using research and creative skills, magazine journalists write a variety of features and news articles for publications, such as consumer magazines and trade journals. This might also involve interviewing people to learn more about a particular topic. 

A magazine journalist's job will vary depending on the type of magazine they are writing for. Duties may include:

  • going to meetings to plan magazine content 
  • suggesting ideas for articles that would interest the magazine’s readers
  • interviewing and researching to collect information for articles
  • writing articles to suit the magazine’s style
  • keeping up-to-date with developments and trends in the magazine's subject area

The role might also involve producing versions of articles for the magazine's website and social media, or working as a critic, reviewing films, food or concerts, for example.

Magazine journalists may be directly employed by a magazine or work on a freelance basis. Freelance magazine journalists may work for a number of different magazines and newspapers at a time.

What do I need to do to become a magazine journalist?

You will need to be good at relaying information clearly through your writing, and in an interesting way.

You may want to gain an industry recognised journalism qualification accredited by the PPA and the National Council for the Training of Journalists (NCTJ).

If you want to work for a specialist magazine, a degree or good level of knowledge in the relevant area would be beneficial.

You can build up a portfolio of work by pitching feature ideas to magazines, doing unpaid work experience or volunteering to write articles for not-for-profit organisations.

Related skills

  • Attention to detail
  • Communication
  • Creativity
  • Interpersonal skills
  • Literacy
  • Organisation
  • Time management

Related subjects

  • English
  • Media studies

Desirable qualifications

  • HND
  • A relevant degree

Where to find out more

Where could I be working?

You might be working for a well-known consumer magazine, a trade publication, or free magazine.

Contains public sector information licensed under the Open Government Licence v3.0

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