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Reader Comments (16)

Posted: Sep 17th 2010 3:51PM (Unverified) said

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Thank you for the suggeations. I was just thinking about what it would take to break into gaming journalism. Having to work 70 hours a week in a field that you do not enjoy makes you think of how you could work your passion for gaming into a job. Thanks again.

Posted: Sep 17th 2010 10:50PM Dblade said

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Every job has aspects you wont enjoy. Games journalism is no different. I'm sure Seraphina could mention a lot of negatives to her job, like dealing with writers block and a deadline crunch. Creative work seems easy when you are looking to it as an escape, but when you have to sit down and produce daily it can get just as wearying.
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Posted: Sep 17th 2010 4:13PM IveDefected said

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Heh, this comes at a perfect time as i've just started a blog with a friend of mine. Good read. Thanks Seraphina!

Posted: Sep 17th 2010 4:17PM jimr9999us said

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I aged with Berryberry...although I love my job and am well confiscated, I often wonder who my mmog could translate into a low paid thankless journey into the land of emotional masochism.

Posted: Sep 17th 2010 4:20PM jimr9999us said

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p.s. Seraphina, you really need to quit giving a damn about how your readers respond to your columns. We honestly only spend 5 minutes a day here clearing our heads between raid wipes and internet porn and beer/cigarette/ taco bell runs.
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Posted: Sep 17th 2010 4:33PM Its Utakata stupid said

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Tip #5. Don't troll.

Posted: Sep 17th 2010 4:36PM (Unverified) said

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All the worthwhile professions pay for crap. True fact.

Posted: Sep 17th 2010 6:16PM Darkmoone said

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You kinda contradict yourself, first you say not to write about the little details of theorycrafting your class because reading about it is boring. Then you say to give you all the boring details as if your talking to a friend.

As for me i could never be a writer because i like to criticize games and not sugarcoat. I would actually try to save people money instead of convincing people every game is viable. Some games suck and sometimes it needs to be said.

I like this site but some articles are clearly made to fish for millions of comments, like "What was wrong with APB?". That to me is a cop out, if you played it then you tell us what you thought was wrong.

Posted: Sep 17th 2010 8:28PM Seraphina Brennan said

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Dark,

As to your first part, I didn't say "leave out the boring bits," and nor did I say, "tell all the boring bits to your friend." I think you've misunderstood me.

What I meant was for aspiring writers to take the boring bits and make them fun to read. Talk about games like you talk to your friends, and not like you're writing a research paper for school. Make everything come alive in the reader's mind, and keep them reading instead of boring them with strict math and min/maxing.

As to your second part about "writers sugarcoating," that's not correct at all. We're allowed free-reign here at Massively to talk about whatever we wish. Of course I talk about the things I love more than other things -- they're the things I love.

And, yes, I criticize as much as I write nice things. Being a writer in the industry does not mean you have to say nice things all the time. We've written critical pieces before (which people seem to forget) and I know I've written my share of them. Mortal Online, Aion, EverQuest II, NCsoft at large, Blizzard, and more have been critiqued in my columns. Yes, sometimes games suck, and sometimes it needs to be said.

But, sometimes, a game may suck for you and may be a perfect match for someone else. Even in bad games there are good spots (like Mortal Online's combat, for example) and those need to be highlighted too. It's a tricky balance, and you'll never be right, but it's still important to be fair.

And, if you're referring to our morning breakfast topic articles, The Daily Grind, then yes, they're made to start discussion and generate comments -- that's their purpose. We know what our opinions on certain things are... but we also want to hear what you and the rest of our commenters want to say. That's why we open these types of things up.

I hope that addresses some of your comment, at least. ^_^

~Sera
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Posted: Sep 17th 2010 10:33PM Salaryn said

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Good tips for using a blog to practice writing at the rate of speed you need to write here and elsewhere, and I think you give a good idea of the variety of things that would need to be covered.
I don't agree that a game specific blog should only be written by someone who knows every aspect of the game backwards and forwards. Many game specific blogs feature the chosen class of the writer, which gives readers both the feel of the game and if they are interested in that class, a bit more depth on how to play it.
The more ideas and points of view the better. With all of the games coming out, the more writers the better.

Posted: Sep 17th 2010 10:53PM mattwo said

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Any relation to dan green?

Posted: Sep 17th 2010 11:24PM Beau Hindman said

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I'd like to add that some of the benefits of the job can't have a price put on them, especially if you *love* games! (Hopefully, you do.) Thanks to Massively, I've been able to meet cool developers and community members, talk to them, discuss ideas -- essentially I've been a kid in a candy store, and they PAY me to do it! I'd like to think that I might have even had some influence on the community with my own ideas. :)

If you wanna' do it, just do it. Start writing, and keep it up!


Beau

Posted: Sep 18th 2010 6:14AM (Unverified) said

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More mindless drivel from the blog sites.

To clarify: blogging is NOT the same thing as legitimate journalism. Most blogging is micro-deadline regurgitating of news or items originated elsewhere. The deadline is usually “today”. What there is of personal commentary comes from a VERY narrow viewpoint, as admitted by the author. Blogging can be a “tool” used by professional journalists to “augment” their primary work, but should not be confused with professional journalism.

Most publishers and hardware manufacturers do not consider blog sites as qualifying for things like review units, special coverage. The big blogs can, but not usually individual “gun for hire” bloggers.

No, I’m not trolling, and no, I’m not going to tell you who I really am. I’m offering perspective meant to stand on its own.

To add to the above; Gaming Journalism is extremely lucrative. If you have the ability and connections to write in print, and even write entire books; this is a way to make a LOT of money. Most blog sites pay about ten to fifteen dollars per blog post. Of course you’re going to put very little into it. They get very little relative exposure, and thus, the ROI scheme is completely different. To broadly state that gaming journalism doesn’t pay well only proves that the author’s scope is very limited, and should have either clarified that distinction, or should admit now that she did not know of that distinction. Two of the wealthier people I know are gaming journalists.

I will concede: Massively is better than Kotaku, which is run by Gawker. I’m not going to open THAT can of worms. Keep writing original content, but please, change your title and article to reflect that you are specifically talking about game BLOGGING.

However, I will note that this is at least the second instance in which you have complained about the pay in your “job”. You also did this in your totally self-serving and completely unnecessary follow up to your vapidly devoid of useful content article on UI design, in which you openly admitted to not having useful suggestions to offer. Why then should we care what you have to say on a subject you are not well versed enough on to actually offer solutions to? Oh, and please stop saying “trust me ( on this )”. It just makes you look childish.

This is why we don’t take bloggers seriously.

Posted: Sep 18th 2010 11:43AM Seraphina Brennan said

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John,

This is a breaking in guide, for those who want to enter the field of journalism. These steps are meant to be beginner's steps, so you can ease into the field and decide if it's right for you.

Unfortunately, being on the bottom rung of the ladder means making low pay. Many print sites won't take you unless you have an impressive writing style or, more commonly, experience. These are great ways to get your feet wet, your name out there, and find your place in this pond.

And, even then, getting on a print site that does offer good pay means hoping they have an opening, or knowing someone who can refer you. As you said, connections are important, and those connections can be fostered once you break into the industry and start seeing people. (Which means getting your foot in the door and working your way up.)

Yes, you're absolutely right, small blog sites get very little, but they do show that you have passion and you're willing to work for it. When you approach your next job, be it Massively or somewhere else, showing that you're really into this and willing to work for it is a great boon. I mean the blogging step as exactly that, a step towards doing what you want to do more professionally.

~Sera
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Posted: Sep 18th 2010 11:29PM Araxes said

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I only have to take issue with your statement about MMOs vs. MMO's. :)

The apostrophe is not only used to signify possession, it is also used to signify letters which have been removed to form a shortened or conjoined word. While it was more common in English that would now be considered archaic, we do still use it in contractions, primarily. In that case it signifies the omission of letters. I would find that to be closer to what you are doing when you follow an acronym with an S -- you are removing everything in between what would be the ending word. Since "massively multi-player online [games]" is plural, would it not then be permissible to add an apostrophe and S to the end of the acronym?

For that matter, "MMOs" in any case doesn't make much sense, since "online" is never used in the plural, anyhow! You should, technically, always add a G to the whole acronym. hehe

Personally, I think there is room for leniency. ;)

Posted: Sep 20th 2010 5:51PM Evy said

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I was too shy to say hi to you at Dragon*Con this year. Maybe next time. :) Thanks for another awesome article.

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