Q/A: Finding Work in the Industry, Reviewing Products

Typing

I’ve been a writer inside of the video game community for about four years now. I started my own site that originally contained poetry before I realized I could combine my two main loves: writing and video games. My experience isn’t as extensive as some who may have already developed careers, but I’ve also taken a different path than some. There has been a lot of failure, but there has been an immeasurable amount of success… and now I’m starting to get repetitive questions from people wanting to do what I do. My advice may not work for you! If you truly want to write in this community then you’ll have to learn how to experiment and discover exactly what works for you.

But for those who still send in these two questions, here are my answers:

1. How do I find work?

Unless you immediately have contacts, you don’t. At least not right away. And if you don’t have a resume built or a portfolio to prove that you can write, applying at places is pretty pointless. MAKE YOUR OWN BLOG. If you can’t take the time to make a free blog and write in it at least once a week… then this isn’t for you. Even if sites are looking for voluntary writers, they would prefer to bring on self-starters and people who actually ENJOY writing. Having an updated blog shows your passion and motivation and also allows you to build vital experience.

2. How do I get free stuff?

You don’t.

We’re not sponsored pro players or YouTube directors, and in a world where the majority of news and entertainment rests in video content and community personalities, writers tend to get the short end of the stick. Don’t ever try to use your position to get free stuff. Greed will only turn you away from potential contacts & employers. Instead, network with companies that you genuinely want to network with. Communicate. Be human. Be a potential customer! There are several companies that are searching for people to review their products. Feel free to send an email offering your services, but remember, you’re not doing this to get free stuff.

My first “free” review product came from SquidGrip and I sincerely loved their product! My PS3 controller never looked/felt so good, and I honestly shared my experience with it. Not only did I come in contact with a nice product that I would definitely buy again in the future, I found an awesome company to keep in contact with (Twitter is wonderful).

I know I’ve mentioned these subjects several times in the past, but as I keep getting more questions, I feel the need to keep reiterating these things. Getting into this industry can be a massive pain in the ass, and a lot of people end up quitting. There is more to writing than just writing articles every day, especially when you’re updating and maintaining your own website. Be motivated and creative! Develop personal and professional relationships with other writers. Be a positive influence for others and you’ll eventually find yourself working toward a career.

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