A playwright is an independent artist who creates work for the stage. Some have a specialized degree in playwriting, while others majored in English or theatre or started writing on their own. Playwrights usually have the freedom to decide what to write about and when. Sometimes, they are “commissioned” to write a play or musical for a specific theatre company, and may be given a topic or theme to write about along with funding. Playwrights are rarely employed on a full- or part-time basis. Most are paid after a theatre agrees to produce their play, when they receive a “royalty” fee.