A realistic look at a career in game journalism from first-hand experience.
Great article! As a gaming journalist newbie I found great comfort in reading your article knowing that I'm not the only one feeling at times discouraged. At the same time I feel motivated as well knowing I'm on the right path.
I'm glad to hear you feel motivated. It is definitely a rough path, but worth it in the end, especially if you love what you do every day.
gaming journalism is a very luring thing since if you wanna be a journalist you need a journalist diploma. in the opposite case it's just game writing. That's why gaming journalism will never be taken seriously, too many subjectivity and no honesty is what's written and being told. These are the main qualities a socalled journalist should have and that's why journalism schools exist. What exists is fan websites nothing more. Everyone knows what influences each website. IGN, Gamespot or GT just to name a few. having a knowledge about gaming isn't enough, it just makes it easier to know what you're talking about by giving the right references. A car mechanic cannot be a mechanical engineer for example and defending people in the street doesn't make me a lawyer.
@abzdine You actually don't need a diploma. Journalist is an unprotected title. http://www.writersbureau.co... I think a large reason to why game journalism is not taken seriously, is because readers tend to completely overlook the really great articles that are out there and go for the "clickbait". There are many completely unprofessional sites on the web that can draw a large crowd to their articles thanks to sites like N4G and provokative headlines. There's also a minimum of quality control needed before you can reach a large audience. Since people don't bother looking into sources or consider the credibility of a site, basically anyone can claim to have spoken to an "anonymous source". Hence, good journalism is out there, but it's so easy for the bad journalists to thrive.
When console sales increase by 5 units, write that they are "soaring." When console sales drop by 5 units, write that they are "bombing." Keep your headlines inflammatory and full of spin, then watch the clicks come rolling in!
Those are some good bullet points to keep in mind. Also, read, always look to expand your language, don't resort to clichés and don't put every idea for a Top 10 list that comes to mind on paper. There are some great writers out there: http://gamesjournalismprize... Learn from them.
This article has been done many times already
Sure it has, but never from my personal experiences. This is the first time I've written about it. Other people may have different experiences and outlooks on the entire process and field.
Informative if not a little discouraging!
It can be a discouraging job, it isn't always fun. But I think if you enjoy what you do then it's possible to fight through that feeling. I feel discouraged at where I'm at in this field all the time, I keep on going, looking for the end result. It will be worth the hard work.
Working unpaid is the first step on the ladder, getting good will help you climb. To reach the top though, you'll need a hand from someone already there.
Working unpaid can definitely be a great starting step, it allows you to get some experience and hopefully an editor willing to give you some tips to improve. I would definitely recommend keeping a day job, however.
N4G is a community of gamers posting and discussing the latest game news. It’s part of NewsBoiler, a network of social news sites covering today’s pop culture.