Every year, PAX East, the biggest video game convention on the East Coast, hosts a panel about breaking into games journalism. Editors from multiple outlets have advised aspiring writers how to pitch a feature story or self-publish — but rarely have they said what happens next. Once you’ve established a reputation as a talented and reliable writer, what’s it like to actually make a career of games journalism?
To explore this question, I assembled and moderated the PAX East 2016 panel “You’re a Games Journalist! Now What?” Joining me were Susan Arendt, managing editor of GamesRadar+; Samit Sarkar, senior reporter for Polygon; Alexa Ray Corriea, editor at GameSpot; and Holly Green, features contributor for Paste Magazine. We discussed the hard and soft skills necessary to make it as a journalist; collaborating with editors to produce better writing and writers; the difference in turnaround time for news versus features; how video is being incorporated into daily reporting; and the financial realities of the profession.
Stream the audio edition of this interview below or from Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, Google Podcasts, Spotify, Amazon Music, Overcast, Pandora, Pocket Casts, iHeartRadio, TuneIn, RadioPublic, or the Internet Archive. Thanks to Lon Seidman for recording this audio and video, which are embedded past the jump along with a transcript. See also the summary at Pangyrus.