Ask The Freelance Dude #12 – Heading Out West


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Dear Freelance Dude,

I am a recent journalism graduate from University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, looking to write for IGN, 1UP, and other gaming websites. I’ve written about video games for my college newspaper, and I’m looking to gain more experience by freelancing for a video game fan site. So my question to you is would I have a better chance with pitching stories or getting work from major gaming websites if I live in California? I’m just concerned that they won’t consider my work because I don’t live in CA. I’m thinking about moving to CA because I have relatives there and so I can network easier.

Signed,
Tom K.

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Ask The Freelance Dude #11 – Review Copies and You


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Dear Freelance Dude,

I currently write for the gaming section of a UK student paper and I’m probably going to be that section’s editor in a few months. I was wondering who to contact about getting review code because in a publication that receives pre-release albums for the music section and preview screening invitations for the film section, the games content is lagging behind without any publisher contacts. We have a distribution of 5,000 copies all over the city of Norwich and 13 issues a year. I was wondering if the publication is big enough to receive review code and, if so, who to contact to get it.

Thanks,
Oliver B.

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Ask The Freelance Dude #10 – Landing Interviews


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Dear Freelance Dude,

I landed my first freelance job recently. Part of what I would like to include is an interview with someone in the videogame industry. What’s the best way to get a hold of someone and conduct an interview when you have no prior contact?

Signed,
Derek T.

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Ask The Freelance Dude #9 – Perilous Pitches?


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Dear Freelance Dude,

What are the repercussions of having a pitch rejected? Will getting a pitch rejection put you on “The List” of writers to ignore future pitches from, since there are a ton of other writers who can fill your place instead? Failure is a lot easier to cope with when there are future opportunities to try again! Also, are there any actions, outside of full-on disrespect and rudeness, that can jeopardize your relationship with a publication before it even starts? I don’t want to relocate to San Francisco in order to further my goal of becoming a games writer, only to find out that no one will take me because of something I did two years prior.

Thanks,
Andrew T.

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Ask The Freelance Dude #8 – Transitioning From Volunteer To Paying Gigs


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Dear Freelance Dude,

So I’ve been writing for an average sized gaming site for a few months now (we get around 10-20k hits a day now that the holiday season is over), and now I feel like I need to seek bigger and better opportunities, mainly because writing for this site doesn’t pay anything. I mean, sure, it gets me free games, and that is nice; but I want to pay bills with my writing.

Everywhere I look, all I ever seem to find are freelance jobs that want to pay as little as $2 per article or are simply volunteer jobs. I own every current gen system, aside from the 3DS, and will be getting a Vita on day one. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

Signed,
GamerDadtheGreatPlus8

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Nintendo Power Pieces

Nintendo Power magazine was staple reading back when I was a kid. I remember getting a free copy of Dragon Warrior on NES and a strategy guide with my first full subscription. Man, that game was awesome. I’ve stuck with the magazine over the years off and on, and I dig the way it has changed over time. Needless to say, I was ecstatic to learn my first official contribution to the magazine is slated to run in the Nov. issue. I’ve hesitated to say much until now, but I’ve recently had several other pieces commissioned for the magazine and expect this will probably continue with some regularity. Keep an eye on the Community section in the coming months.