Mark Tosczak: How to Make a Living with Writing

Mark_Tosczak“No matter what your major is, you can make a living with writing.”

Mark Tosczak started college thinking he was going to be an astrophysicist; however, he realized he was not fond of math and switched his major to computer science, then accounting, then finally settled with a major in English by the time he was a Junior.  His writing career started when he joined the news section of N.C. State’s student run newspaper and by the time he was ready to graduate he was the editor of the paper and had made numerous connections with journalists.

Tosczak believes that there are five parts to being successful. One is that no one has ever finished learning how to write and that we should treat our writing as if it is a “perpetual rough draft, always in need of improvement.” The second part is that individuals should learn other ‘meta-skills,’ like project management skills, sales, math, teaching, public speaking, etc. so that we are more well rounded individuals. The third part is to meet and build relationships. By taking the opportunity to talk to your boss and your boss’ boss, you are reaching out to others and makings connections. By building a bridge between the “workers” and “bosses” you can now, more easily, stay connected and potentially, more opportunities may come your way. The fourth and five parts are saying yes more and cultivating other interests. Saying yes, will allow you to cultivate other interests, increase you knowledge, and essentially better communicate and engage with people. By following all of these parts, you will be able to apply and hopefully get the career you have been looking for.

With these parts in mind, you will now be able to create a resume for your dream job. Mr. Tosczak encouraged individuals to “tweak” their resume based on where they’re applying. Resume’s are not static, but rather dynamic because of the tasks/ accomplishments/ jobs/ internships an individual has complete or had. Individuals should ask the companies what they are looking for and deliver their answer in your cover letter. But most importantly, Tosczak says to never “discount what you’re interested in – you will hate your job if you don’t love it, and you will under perform,” so make sure wherever you’re looking to apply, is some place that will push you to be better, but will still keep you happy and feeling successful.

The last two things Mr. Tosczak discussed were content marketing and online networking. Content marketing is when you use any form of medium to market a company’s content in order to acquire customers. That is why social media has become so important today, because it is able to reach out to so many individuals in such a short period of time, that it is now more likely that your company’s message can be seen through various mediums.

Mr. Tosczak has made a living as a newspaper reporter, newspaper editor, freelance journalist, nonprofit communications director, and independent public relations consultant. He now manages client strategy at RLF Communications, which is a public relations and marketing agency in Greensboro.

If you want a small recap on his talk last Thursday, look up tweets with # ElonPWR! You can also check out Mr. Tosczak’s website at

This entry was posted in CUPID News, Outside the Classroom. Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post. Both comments and trackbacks are currently closed.