Video game journalism is a fascinating field that allows you to combine your love of gaming with your passion for writing. As with any career as open and wild as video game journalism, though, how do you get started? The good news is your first steps into freelance video game writing are easier than you think.
Are Video Game Writers in High Demand?
The demand for video game writers has been steadily increasing over the years. With the rise of esports and the popularity of gaming as a whole, there's never been a better time to get into video game journalism.
According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of writers and authors is projected to grow 8% from 2016 to 2026, with an increasing demand for online content. Video game journalism should follow that trend, though it will likely grow more than 8% given how the popularity of gaming in general is on the rise.
How Much Do Freelance Game Journalists Make?
The salary of a video game journalist can vary depending on whether you're working for a publication or working as a freelancer. Most game journalism writers start off freelance, and this is where you'll likely kick off your career, as well.
According to Glassdoor, the average salary for a video game journalist is around $60,000 per year. Freelance game journalists can earn anywhere from $0.10 to $1 per word, depending on the publication and the type of content they produce, and they may write every day or only sporadically.
What Qualifications Do I Need to Be a Game Writer?
There are no specific qualifications required to become a video game journalist. You don't need a degree in journalism, communications, or anything like that. It can often help if you're applying to full-time positions, but by and large, game journalism doesn't require a degree.
The most important qualifications are reliability, knowledge of gaming culture, and strong writing and editing skills. Whether you gain those through practice on your own, through a degree, or by working in other industries, most online gaming publications don't care.
Building Your Portfolio and Gaining Experience
Building your portfolio is crucial if you want to become a video game journalist. Having a selection of writing samples is how you land your first gig, especially if you don't have any kind of credentials to share.
One way to build a portfolio is by starting your own gaming blog or website, where you can publish your reviews and articles. You can also submit content to gaming publications and websites as a guest writer or freelancer, even if you do it for no or low compensation. This will not only help you gain experience but also allow you to showcase your writing skills to potential employers.
Where to Find Video Game Journalism Job Opportunities
The most plugged-in game journalists already follow a few online publications on a daily basis. Most of these sites simply post notifications on their news feed when they're looking to hire new writers. Follow their application procedure and cross your fingers!
Another place to find video game journalism jobs is right here at VGJobs. We've been the industry's go-to location for new game writing jobs and freelance journalism gigs for 15+ years. Check out the latest game journalism jobs and start applying today!