The Occupation Thesaurus: A Writer’s Guide to Jobs, Vocations, and Careers


By Angela Ackerman and Becca Puglisi

Categories: , ,


What if there was a shortcut for helping readers get to know your characters? Would you take it?

Characters are as complex as people and revealing their inner layers without chunky blocks of pace-stopping description is a challenge. The Occupation Thesaurus can help you unlock one of the best tools in your show-don’t-tell writing kit: a character’s job.

Occupations are part of our everyday world, meaning they can be used to encourage readers to make associations between a type of work and the person doing it, shortening the “get to know the character” curve. Whether a person loves or hates what they do, a job can reveal many things, including their priorities, beliefs, desires, and needs. The Occupation Thesaurus will show you how a career choice can characterize, drive the plot, infuse scenes with conflict, and get readers on the character’s side through the relatable pressures, responsibilities, and stakes inherent with work.


Select a job that packs a powerful punch. Inside The Occupation Thesaurus, you’ll find:

  • Informative profiles on popular and unusual jobs to help you write them with authority
  • Believable conflict scenarios for each occupation, giving you unlimited possibilities for adding tension at the story and scene level
  • Advice for twisting the stereotypes often associated with these professions
  • Instruction on how to use jobs to characterize, support story structure, reinforce theme, and more
  • An in-depth study on how emotional wounds and basic human needs may influence a character’s choice of occupation
  • A brainstorming tool to organize the various aspects of your character’s personality so you can come up with the best careers for them

Do more with your description and choose a profession for your character that showcases who they are, what they want, and what they believe in. With over 120 entries in a user-friendly format, The Occupation Thesaurus is an entire job fair for writers.



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