Back Cover for the Book (Work-in-Progress Shot)

imageJust had to share this. You’re looking at a quick and dirty photo of the work-in-progress painting for the back cover of my upcoming book Up Up Down Down Left WRITE: The Freelance Guide to Video Game Journalism. I am consistently blown away with the amazing work cover artist Blake Wheeler comes up with – particularly since I usually provide him with a crappy Photoshop doodled and hand-scribbled mess with vague notes. This is what he comes up with. Amazing! He’s also been a really stellar guy to work with.

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Ask The Freelance Dude #20 – Shopping Around


Dear Freelance Dude,

I’m gearing up to start pitching some things but have always wondered what the hard and fast rules on pitching a single idea or spec piece are. Is pitching one piece to multiple outlets a bad idea? Also, can you keep pitching a rejected piece to other outlets until it’s picked up? Are there any other tips to speed up the process or is it best left alone?

James A.


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Freelance Game Journo Guide Book Update

mockupcover copySo once upon a time some freelance writer dude who makes a living writing about video games for lots of awesome magazines and websites across the universe had an idea: to write a book and jam-pack it full of in-depth, useful advice for aspiring game journos and established writers looking to carve out a career freelancing in the game industry. Oh hey, that’s me! And the book? Up Up Down Down Left WRITE: The Freelance Guide to Video Game Journalism. It’s coming out in just a few more months! Here’s an update on the project, where it’s at, and how you can help (if you feel so inclined) to spread the word as we gear up for this launch, DIY style. Continue reading

Ask The Freelance Dude #19 – Pack A Parachute


Dear Freelance Dude,

I’ve been writing for a volunteer website doing news, reviews, and features – mostly news. However, being recently laid-off has forced me to search for paying opportunities, and I feel I don’t have the experience yet to attain one, freelance or staff (I’ve only been in games journalism for six months). Should I focus on writing features to submit to other websites or should I continue developing my skills until I feel ready?

And are there websites that hire staff writers that work remotely or is that, basically, freelancing?

Anthony S.


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Shop Talk: The Year in Freelance 2012

shoptalk copyOr perhaps more appropriately titled: “Holy crap I survived another year of freelance game journo word-fu craziness!” Every year seems like a wild ride, but 2012 in particular has been an interesting one across the board. So much so that I feel compelled to blab personal thoughts about some of the more interesting moments of my year. Feel free to indulge in my self-indulgence!

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Book Kickstarter Update: We Did It!

This is just a quickie update to let everyone know the Kickstarter for my book Up Up Down Down Left WRITE – The Freelance Guide To Video Game Journalism was a SUCCESS! We made it on Saturday with a total of $8,200 – almost 50 percent of which was insanely raised in the final 48 hours of the Kickstarter. Cruzazy! So now it’s full steam ahead to finish writing this thing and get it prepped for completion. Anyone who didn’t get in on the Kickstarter will still eventually be able to obtain a digital or print copy, but not until after backers have theirs in-hand.

The other fun and crazy news is that I’ll be writing a second book loaded with additional advice and insight – only this second tome will feature lots of quotes and knowhow culled from interviews with the many game industry freelance, writers, and editors who backed the project. That will also be eventually available for purchase.

So there’s a lot to do in the coming weeks and months! I’m going to hit the ground running.

BIG Kickstarter Final Push: We Can SO Do This!

Hey gang, thanks so much for supporting this Kickstarter so far. We’ve got 3 days left and $3,762 to raise by 5pm on Sept 8th. Though it’s probably a long-shot, I’m not going to give up until the final buzzer. I’m hoping you won’t either.

I know you’ve already pledged a lot and put in some serious time promoting this Kickstarter, which I am super grateful for. In order to have a shot at making this a successful, I’m going to need your help once more.

Three things you can do to make this final crazy push work:

1) Consider increasing your pledge – Did you know you can adjust your pledge amount at any time before the project ends? If you feel like kicking in a little bit more or a lot more, that’d be so awesome.

2) Encourage folks – on Twitter and other social networks to get on board in the final days and help make this project happen! Spreading the word is great, but we really need actual backers. Share the link, tweet about it, all of that good stuff. If you can ping your peeps about this a few times, perhaps once a day for the next three days, that’d be really helpful. Particularly as we get VERY close to the final hours.

3) Talk to friends/family in the meatspace world – and point them our way. If you know anyone at work, at home, anywhere that might be interested in backing this project, please let them know about it and our insanely tight final push deadline.

A fun surprise:

Anyone that pledges $125 or more will also get a free Up Up Down Down Left WRITE coffee mug:

Also: if we meet the $7,000 goal in time, I’ve committed to writing a second shorter book and giving ALL BACKERS a free digital copy when it’s complete. That’s two books for everyone who pledges $15 and above, and a totally free book for backers who kicked in less than $15.

Plus all backers get several fun/funky indie games. So that’s sweet.

Please help me make this final push and make this project happen. If we don’t hit $7,000 by the deadline, then we won’t get funded. Thanks for your support!

Less Than 4 Days Left: An Ominous Kickstarter Infographic (and Chuck Norris)

See that up there? That’s what impending doom for my book Kickstarter looks like. Maybe. We need to raise $4,000 in under four days. Actually…three days, seven hours, and about 15 minutes at the time I write this. Yeah. Slow and steady may win the race for some, but in this case we need this thing to spread faster than a zombie plague in the next few days if it’s going to make hit the necessary $7,000 mark by 5pm EST on Sat. Sept 8th.

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Book Kickstarter Update: The Big Push (We Need One)

First off, a huge thanks to everyone who’s been pitching in to help spread the word and contribute to the Kickstarter campaign for my book: Up Up Down Down Left WRITE – The Freelance Guide To Video Game  Journalism. It’s been a wild ride so far, with lots of ups and downs, and we’re nearing the end – for better or worse. I’ve added a lot of awesome bonus rewards and incentives in the past week, and we still have a LOT to raise in the remaining 8 days before the funding deadline, so I figured a big update was in order.  Please read on, because I super need your help.

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Book Kickstarter Interview w/ WhatCulture!

I had a rad chat with the folks over at WhatCulture! about freelance game journalism, the book, the Kickstarter, and more! You can check out the article and interview here!

Kickstarter Update: The book Kickstarter is currently at 22 percent funding, with only 15 days left to hit the $7,000 needed to make this happen. There’s still over $5,000 to raise by the deadline, but if we exceed that amount and hit $10,000, I’ll be writing a second shorter book and giving a free digital copy to all backers. I also have some additional gaming-related surprises in the works. Please check out the project and consider becoming a backer! Remember: if the project doesn’t hit the $7,000 goal by Sept 8. then it doesn’t get funded. ULTRA Sad panda