Chapter 12: Creating a Writing Portfolio

69 Writing portfolio content

When considering what to include in your writing portfolio, look at relevant class assignments or work produced in a previous or current role. Save everything in a file, especially work from a class that requires you to write common communication materials such as newsletters, press releases, brochures, and news articles. If you do not have internship or work experience, try to do volunteer writing for a nonprofit organization or a small project for a startup company. What matters is that you have writing samples to show, not whether you were paid to do the work.

The first page of a hard-copy portfolio is usually a resume. Online portfolios include a description or summary of your professional background. From there, create clear sections and headings and arrange the content by article or document type. Tailor the portfolio to jobs or industries you’re interested in and by chronological order, with the most recent work first or at the top of the online portfolio. For example, if you’re applying for a job that requires proficiency in AP style writing, include writing samples that use this style, such as press releases or feature articles. If you’re applying for a job that requires social media writing skills, include social media posts that you’ve created for an organization. Here’s a list of some of the materials you could include in the portfolio:

  • Press releases
  • Website copy
  • Feature articles
  • Media pitches
  • Social media posts that you created for an organization
  • A sample RFP (request for proposal) for a campaign or a detailed public relations campaign proposal
  • News media clippings of coverage you secured from pitches (it helps if you provide the original pitch that led to the media coverage)

Include brief information about each document, such as the name of the organization it was created for and the date. Be ready to discuss your writing samples during a job interview. You may explain why you created the material and the results that came from it, such as increased website traffic and Twitter followers from a news article publication. For more examples of writing portfolios, click on the following links:

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Icon for the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License

Writing portfolio content by Jasmine Roberts is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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