a writer of a book, article, or document (subclass : literary works: writer [Q36180])

An author is a person who makes an original piece of work. Most people use author to mean writer. While a writer is a type of author, authors often do more than write. Anyone who creates something original is an author. This could be written items such as books, stories or poems. This could also be other types of art, such as sculpture or music. Any type of work can be made by an author.

Writer and author


The term author is commonly used to refer to a person who writes as a profession. It is also believed by many that the term is used for writers who are distinguished and who have had their works published. These explanations are common with people who work with those that write professionally.[1]

An author does not always have to be a writer. If a person dictates a letter to a secretary, then the secretary is a writer but the person who dictated the letter is the author.



Other examples of someone being called author:

  • In copyright law, the author is the first owner of copyright.[2] These laws also apply to other works of art such as pictures or music.
  • In biology, the first person to write an article that gives a name to and describes a type of living thing is the author of that name.
  • Someone who writes music may be called the author of that piece of music. Another name for an author of music is a composer.

French usage


When talking about movies, the French word for author, auteur, is often used about someone who has been both the writer and director of a movie.



  1. "Difference between a Writer and an Author". Elite Authors. 2021-01-27. Retrieved 2023-08-28.
  2. Lessig, Lawrence (2015-11-13). Free Culture. ISBN 978-82-690182-0-2.

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