New York Times Writer Salary and Job Outlook - (2023)

Are you an aspiring journalist who is still in high school, or are you already working as a staff or freelance journalist elsewhere? Chances are high that you have dreamed about working at the New York Times at least once.

What do staff writers for this famous newspaper earn per year, though, and how do you increase your odds of landing a job at the New York Times?


  • 1 Average Salary for New York Times Writers
  • 2 Top Paying States
  • 3 Job Outlook
  • 4 What Exactly Does a New York Times Writer Do?
  • 5 How to Become a New York Times Writer?
  • 6 Qualifications to Be a New York Times Writer
  • 7 Skills to Be a New York Times Writer

Average Salary for New York Times Writers

Working in varied sectors that include grant writing, scientific writing, script writing, web content writing, and authoring books, writers and authors in the United States earn, the Bureau of Labor Statistics indicates, a median annual salary of $67,120. Reporters and journalists, meanwhile, make a lower average of $49,300.

The terms “average” and “median”, of course, both mean that a great deal of writers are earning significantly less, while a small number bring in considerably higher annual salaries. Are you assuming that staff writers at a daily publication with as much prestige and history — not to mention a global readership — as the New York Times would earn more than the average staff writer?

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Not that much data is available to confirm or deny this suspicion, but we do have access to some.

Glassdoor reports that the average annual salary for New York Times staff writers is $67,158, while claiming that salaries range from $58,861 to $79,139. While this seems plausible when considering the national salary ranges for reporters and other journalists, it is crucial to keep in mind that these figures are based on a very small sample size, and are therefore not terribly reliable.

New York Times staff writers are unionized and represented by the Newspaper Guild. This fact is certain to have an impact on the salary ranges within this publication.

What Do New York Times Writers Make Per Hour?

Due to the fact that reliable data regarding average salaries at the New York Times is hard to come by, it is impossible to say for sure. Based on the average reported by Glasdoor, the hourly earnings for full-time staff writers would be approximately $32,50, however.

Information regarding freelance rates is also not publicly available, and rates will be the result of negotiations between the editor and the freelancer, depending on the type of work.

Salary Based on Experience

As in any reputable publication — or any other workplace, for that matter — junior staff would have lower salaries than the most experienced writers. Beyond that truism, there is little hard data to base any conclusions on.

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What we can say with certainly, however, is that even participants in the New York Times Fellowship Program, a year-long internship through which the New York Times nurtures the next generation of journalistic talent, do receive payment as well as benefits. This publication is committed to its staff’s professional development at each level, and with that, it certainly adds to each writer’s earning potential.

Salary Based on Education

The New York Times offers a wide variety of professional development programs for its staff. Those who are hired as fellows will certainly earn less than senior staff writers with many years of experience. However, this publication clearly values on-the-job experience. Applicants with advanced degrees cannot expect to earn significantly more than those who have a Bachelor’s degree upon joining the newspaper, and without any prior work experience.

Those aspiring journalists who are privileged enough to be hired by the New York Times can, rather, expect to work at a publication that continuously helps them improve their skills. Should they stay with the paper, they can reasonably expect to earn higher salaries over time.

Top Paying States

Although the New York Times is based in New York, of course, the newspaper maintains a strong network of correspondents all over the country, and the world. Salary ranges or (in the case of freelance writers) rates will depend on the nature of the work they are doing, as well as on their location. As such, it is not possible to give clear information about the top-paying states for New York Times writers.

Job Outlook

Young aspiring reporters who manage to join the New York Times team are very fortunate. Although landing a fellowship position by no means guarantees that a writer will later be offered a full-time role, it may increase the odds. The most talented journalists will find, in the New York Times, a publication that values them and shows it by continuing to offer educational opportunities.

The fact that the New York Times is a unionized publication offers additional job stability; in the past, for example, the Guild that represents writers at the New York Times negotiated no-layoff guarantees for writers.

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Staff writers at this prestigious publication can certainly enjoy fulfilling careers at the New York Times until they retire.

What Exactly Does a New York Times Writer Do?

The duties of a New York Times writer will depend, to a large extent, on the desk at which they are working. The New York Times covers everything from US politics and international politics to science, sports, tech, lifestyle, business, and real estate news. A writer’s typical job description will depend on the path they take.

Some of the things New York Times writers may do over the course of a normal day, on the other hand, include:

  • Developing and vetting sources, and where relevant maintaining long-term relationships with them.
  • Engaging in data analysis and fact-checking.
  • Pitching new story ideas.
  • Being out in the field, covering the news as it unfolds.
  • Interviewing people of interest.
  • Writing engaging stories and reports in line with the paper’s style and tone, and contributing to headline ideas.
  • Working to tight deadlines to ensure that the news can be published in time.
  • Revising stories as needed.

All the while, New York Times writers will be expected to maintain strong journalistic ethics. Writing for a top publication like the New York Times is a calling as much as a job, and applicants should be willing to be on the move whenever something interesting is happening. The news never sleeps, after all.

How to Become a New York Times Writer?

The New York Times itself, fortunately, offers very helpful and transparent guidelines in this arena. The publication makes it clear that it seeks talented and skilled journalists all the time, including by head-hunting after keeping a close eye on the competition.

As a seasoned journalist with a proven track record, you can simply apply for a position with the New York Times. If the paper is interested, a multi-stage job interview will follow.

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Young aspiring writers can, meanwhile, apply to take part in the New York Times’ Fellowship Program. Those who don’t yet have a lot of experience and who are applying for staff writer positions are encouraged to show the publication exactly how they stand out. This is not the time to be humble. Owing to its popularity, the New York Times will always receive more job applications than it can handle. If you are, in any way, exceptional, you need to show them.

Qualifications to Be a New York Times Writer

To be a staff writer at the New York Times, you will likely require a Bachelor’s degree in journalism at the very least. At certain desks, like the tech or science desks, advanced degrees in other fields may be helpful.

Freelance writers are different. As long as a contribution meets the publication’s stringent requirements, and are able to write a uniquely newsworthy or important article, qualifications are going to be irrelevant. That is to say, young climate activists who leave a global mark or musicians who uncover systemic corruption in the music industry, for instance, certainly have a chance to be published in the New York Times.

Skills to Be a New York Times Writer

New York Times writers will have an exceptional commitment to the field of journalism. They will be the best of the best — and if they do not yet have the experience to make that claim, they will at least have tangible raw talent. They’ll be exceptional writers as well as skilled gatherers of information who possess the interpersonal skills needed to maintain close relationships with sources, of the kind that facilitate top-quality reporting.

New York Times writers should be intensely curious, driven, and will always be willing to develop their professional skills to keep up with the times.

Can You Be a New York Times Writer Without a Degree?

Though reporters could once build successful careers and strong reputations without ever holding a college degree, that is no longer the case. It is unlikely that anyone without at least a Bachelor’s degree in journalism will be hired as a staffer at the New York Times.

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How much money do writers for The New York Times make? ›

$90,898. The estimated total pay for a Journalist at New York Times is $90,898 per year. This number represents the median, which is the midpoint of the ranges from our proprietary Total Pay Estimate model and based on salaries collected from our users. The estimated base pay is $77,978 per year.

How much do New York Times jobs pay? ›

The average The New York Times salary ranges from approximately $34,179 per year for Copy Editor to $264,918 per year for Interim CEO. Average The New York Times hourly pay ranges from approximately $12.96 per hour for Dental Receptionist to $42.00 per hour for Project Manager.

How much do freelance writers make in nyt? ›

The Best-Paying Magazines for Freelance Writers

The New York Times Magazine: Another one of the magazines that pay for articles, freelance rates vary from 50 cents to $2.75 per word for print and web.

Does the NY Times pay well? ›

Average The New York Times salaries by department include: Finance at $83,237, Engineering at $138,628, HR at $110,403, and Communications at $250,000. Half of The New York Times salaries are above $101,684.

Who are the highest paid writers? ›

The Ten Richest Authors in the World
  • Jeffrey Archer – $195 Million.
  • John Grisham – $220 Million.
  • Nigel Blackwell – $292.5 Million.
  • Barbara Taylor Bradford – $300 Million.
  • Danielle Steel – $310 Million.
  • Nora Roberts – $390 Million.
  • Stephen King – $400 Million.
  • James Patterson – $560 Million.
Feb 10, 2023

How many writers make a living writing? ›

Yup, there are only 300 writers making a living writing fiction.

What is a good base salary in New York? ›

Average Annual Salary in New York, NY
PercentileAnnual SalaryMonthly Pay
1 more row
Nov 4, 2021

Is New York Times a good place to work? ›

Is New York Times a good company to work for? New York Times has an overall rating of 3.8 out of 5, based on over 792 reviews left anonymously by employees. 76% of employees would recommend working at New York Times to a friend and 76% have a positive outlook for the business.

What is a good starting salary in New York? ›

How much does an Entry Level make in New York City, New York? As of Mar 2, 2023, the average annual pay for an Entry Level in New York City is $33,410 a year. Just in case you need a simple salary calculator, that works out to be approximately $16.06 an hour. This is the equivalent of $642/week or $2,784/month.

Is it hard to make a living as a freelance writer? ›

A freelance writing career takes hard work, good time management skills, and the ability to hustle to find new gigs. To help build a rewarding career in this field, study the twelve freelance writing tips every author should know.

Can I make a living as a freelance writer? ›

Freelance writing is an excellent way to make extra money! And the great thing about it is that there are always plenty of freelance jobs for writers available if you know where to look. Best of all, you can earn a nice side income or become a full time freelance writer earning six figures!

How much can a beginner freelance writer make? ›

If you search for “How much do freelance writers make per hour?” you'll find a range that's so broad, it's barely useful. Payscale reports a pay range of $10.31 to $53.79 per hour for freelance writers. ZipRecruiter has an even broader range: $5.29 to $193.03 per hour.

What is the richest job in New York? ›

The 100 Highest Paying Jobs In New York For 2023
  • Consultant And Sales Representative.
  • General Surgeon.
  • Vice President, Products & Marketing.
  • Head Of Security.
  • Executive Vice President Of Sales.
  • Chief Executive Officer/Chief Technology Officer.
  • Revenue Officer.
  • Pain Management Physician.
Apr 11, 2022

What is the highest paying job at The New York Times? ›

The highest-paid job at The New York Times Company is a managing director. These professionals earn an average salary of $229,146, which works out to about $ 110.17 per hour. The top 10 highest-paid jobs at The New York Times Company are: Managing Director – $229,146.

How much does a Nytimes researcher earn? ›

$75,283. The estimated total pay for a Researcher at New York Times is $75,283 per year.

Are writers in high demand? ›

Employment of writers and authors is projected to grow 4 percent from 2021 to 2031, about as fast as the average for all occupations. About 15,200 openings for writers and authors are projected each year, on average, over the decade.

Do writers become millionaires? ›

Writing a novel can make you rich, but only a small percentage of writers get really rich from their writing. Most authors do not survive on royalties from book sales alone. Many retain other jobs to make ends meet. But every now and then, a writer will break through to earn big money.

How many hours a day do most writers write? ›

Erica Vetsch: The true answer is—it depends. If I'm on a deadline of some kind, I can write from 4-6 hours a day. Mostly, I write from 2-4 hours on weekday afternoons. I do lots of other writing tasks like editing, marketing, blogging, etc, but for writing on the manuscript, I average about 3 hours per weekday.

How many books does an average writer sell? ›

As the woman who inspired this article learned, it's not easy to sell books. There are all kinds of statistics bouncing around out there, but generally speaking, most self-published authors will likely sell around 250 books or less.

What is the monthly income of a writer? ›

Average salary for a Content Writer in India is 3 Lakhs per year (₹25.0k per month).

How much is $75,000 salary in NYC? ›

If you make $75,000 a year living in the region of New York, USA, you will be taxed $19,161. That means that your net pay will be $55,839 per year, or $4,653 per month.

Can you live in NYC on 80k a year? ›

Your average landlord will require that your annual income be 40 times the monthly rent. For instance, if you want to live in a $2,000/month studio apartment in Manhattan (which is on the low end of the range for apartments in Manhattan, but not uncommonly so), you'll need $80,000 a year.

How much do you need to live comfortably in NYC? ›

How much does a bachelor need to live in New York? A bachelor will need around $ 2,500 per month to live comfortably in NYC. A bachelor will need around $ 2,500 per month to live comfortably in NYC.

Can you work remotely for The New York Times? ›

As an employer, The New York Times Company encourages team members to “innovate, experiment, and shift paradigms." In the past, The New York Times Company has hired for a variety of flexible jobs, including part-time, temporary, freelance, remote, and work-from-anywhere jobs.

What job is most in demand in New York? ›

Some of the top industries in New York include healthcare, education, and finance. In 2021, the average weekly wage in New York came to about $1,690. Transportation and storage associates see some of the greatest demand.

Is there a job shortage in NYC? ›

Startling new data has revealed that New York had a roughly 300,000-person drop in its workforce since the pandemic. While New York added 13,500 jobs in December, it leaves the city short of pre-COVID levels. Some from the city share their struggles dealing with a worker shortage and how business is down.

What is the top 1% salary in NYC? ›

New York
  • Top 1% income threshold:$777,126.
  • Top 5% income threshold:$265,530.
Jul 8, 2022

What is a middle class salary in NYC? ›

In New York City, where the cost of living is substantially higher than the national average, incomes of $56,000 to $169,000 classify as being in the middle class, according to a CNBC analysis. The range is lower in places where the cost of living is less.

Can I live in NYC on 40K a year? ›

If you are a single individual with no kids, your annual salary to live comfortable can be as low as 40K per year after taxes. This salary would allow you to afford a studio or one-bedroom apartment in some of NYC's most affordable and convenient areas, such as Washington Heights, Inwood, or Harlem.

Is there a shortage of freelance writers? ›

There is no shortage of marketplaces and platforms open to freelance writers today. Not surprising, given that it's an industry every business needs from time to time. Yet writing has experienced plenty of disruption during the 2020s. Meaning creatives need to know the best freelance writing platforms to join.

How many hours a week do freelance writers work? ›

Believe it or not, most of the six-figure freelancers I know work less than 30 hours a week, usually closer to 20 billable hours. (If you're ready to earn $100 an hour or more freelancing, check out my online course.)

Is freelance writing stressful? ›

Freelance creatives go through a lot of mental stress to meet client demands, land new work, and stay on top of their game. And not knowing how to deal with mental stress leads to exhaustion, burnout, brain fog, and mental fatigue.

Do freelance writers pay taxes? ›

As a self-employed freelance writer, you'll complete Schedule C to arrive at your taxable income. Use Schedule C to list your income and business expenses. Some costs might include: internet.

How to get a writing job with no experience? ›

How to Find Entry-Level Freelance Writing Jobs for Beginners
  1. Rewrite local small-business websites.
  2. Find abandoned business blogs.
  3. Write business emails.
  4. Create a newsletter or brochure.
  5. Report articles for local news media.
  6. Write for local magazines.
  7. Turn your former employer into a client.
  8. Write for local marketing agencies.

How can a writer make money without a degree? ›

Below, I'll share four resources I used to build my freelance writing business from zero.
  1. #1 Read books about writing, blogging and marketing.
  2. #2 Consume articles and videos about freelancing.
  3. #3 Enroll in online courses.
  4. #4 Study blog posts.
Mar 28, 2021

How much do beginner writers make a year? ›

While ZipRecruiter is seeing annual salaries as high as $52,000 and as low as $23,500, the majority of Entry Level Content Writer salaries currently range between $40,000 (25th percentile) to $47,000 (75th percentile) with top earners (90th percentile) making $52,000 annually across the United States.

How do you make a living writing? ›

The 5 Most Realistic Ways to Make Money Writing
  1. Get Paid to Write Articles for Blogs, Magazines, and Journals.
  2. Make Money by Creating Collateral for Content-Hungry Businesses.
  3. Get Paid to Write by Becoming a Best-Selling Kindle Author.
  4. Make Money Writing as a Conversion-Focused Copywriter.
Jan 11, 2023

How much do beginner writers make? ›

We recommend beginner freelance writers charge no less than $0.05 to $0.20 per word. If you consider the example of a 1,000-word blog post, this means you'll range from $50 to $200 per post. In reality, many beginning writers make $0.01 to $0.04 per word, which is an unreasonably low fee.

How much does a New York Times researcher get paid? ›

$75,283. The estimated total pay for a Researcher at New York Times is $75,283 per year.

How much does the average writer make per book? ›

Publishers typically pay a $5,000 to $10,000 advance to good first-time authors. This means they would need to sell around 1,000 copies of a book that costs $20 per copy to break even after printing and distribution costs. Following that, the author will receive royalties, typically about 10%.

How much do newspaper writers get paid? ›


How much do small time authors make? ›

How much can authors expect to earn from their books? A first-time author with a traditional publishing deal might expect an advance of $1,000-$10,000 and 5-18% royalties once they “earn out” their advance. Self-published authors do not receive advances, but their royalties can reach up to 70% for ebook editions.

Is The New York Times a good place to work? ›

Is New York Times a good company to work for? New York Times has an overall rating of 3.8 out of 5, based on over 792 reviews left anonymously by employees. 76% of employees would recommend working at New York Times to a friend and 76% have a positive outlook for the business.

How much do New Yorker writers make? ›

The New Yorker Salaries
Job TitleSalary
Freelance Writer salaries - 1 salaries reported$60,390/yr
Design Director salaries - 1 salaries reported$136,310/yr
Digital Photo Editor salaries - 1 salaries reported$52,499/yr
Journalist/Reporter salaries - 1 salaries reported$79,751/yr
10 more rows

Can you make a living as a book writer? ›

Worry not, fair writers, because you can make a living as a writer. It just takes some understanding and, like all careers, dedication and hard work. In this blog, we're going to talk about what it takes to turn writing into your career.

How many books does a first time author sell? ›

How Many Books Should I Expect To Sell? Most self-published authors sell 250 books or less, regardless of how many different books they write. Traditionally published books sell around 3,000 copies on average, with only 250 of those sales in the first year.

Can you make 100k as a writer? ›

Yes, you can make $100,000 per year as a writer.

The chances of earning over $100k for a writer are actually pretty good because the highest-paid writer positions typically pay at least $102,000 per year.

Do writers get paid well? ›

The median annual wage for writers and authors was $69,510 in May 2021. The median wage is the wage at which half the workers in an occupation earned more than that amount and half earned less. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $38,500, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $133,580.

Do you need a degree to be a newspaper writer? ›

While you may not need a professional degree to become a journalist, training can help you grow your knowledge in this field. Training can also help you develop your portfolio so you can showcase your skills and abilities to prospective employers.

How do full time writers make money? ›

  1. Start a blog. Blogging is a tried-and-true method for writers to make money online. ...
  2. Create blog posts (for others) ...
  3. Establish a niche website. ...
  4. Self-Publish a book. ...
  5. Create affiliate content. ...
  6. Write scripts for video creators. ...
  7. Write show notes for podcasts. ...
  8. Create written content for social media.

How many hours a day do authors write? ›

Erica Vetsch: The true answer is—it depends. If I'm on a deadline of some kind, I can write from 4-6 hours a day. Mostly, I write from 2-4 hours on weekday afternoons. I do lots of other writing tasks like editing, marketing, blogging, etc, but for writing on the manuscript, I average about 3 hours per weekday.


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