A sports writer may write about one sport only or cover a wide range of them, depending on the publication for which he or she writes. Newspaper sports section writers often work full time to produce a daily column. This type of writer tends to cover many different sport events as well as news about contracts and teams. A freelance sports writer chooses his or her own topics for stories, but also has to get the ideas approved by the publication's editor before writing each article.
Freelance sports writers usually write more about the industry as well as team and player performances over a season, whereas newspaper writers with daily columns tend to provide game recaps. Writing recaps of games with major plays and players noted often means the sports writer watches the event the night before. He or she takes notes during the game before writing the article or column to have it ready on deadline for the morning newspaper. Sports writers need to turn stories around quickly with fast writing, but they also need to be sure to keep the facts such as scoring information accurate.
Car racing and golf journalists may travel often to cover events and tournaments. They try to get interviews with high profile sports personalities. Many sports writers work at making industry relationships while building a reputation for quality journalism. Getting interviews with top athletes and sports stars can increase their demand with editors.
Researching players' averages and other details is a routine part of the job for most sports writers. A sports writer must stay up to date on trade talks and contract information. Even sports recap writers must interject interesting news and background information into their game analysis to keep readers reading. Checking their articles for accuracy before sending them to an editor is important.
Freelance sport writers spend part of their time looking for new markets to write for, such as online magazines. They must convince sports editors to assign them topics to write about or pitch an original article idea to an editor. A sports writer must prove his or her knowledge and ability to an editor in order to be accepted to write about a particular sport. When an editor gets to know and appreciate a sports writer's work, he or she will assign larger sports stories. If a freelance sport writer's name and work become popular, he or she may be offered a regular column in a sports publication or department.