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Writing About Video Games: Turn Your Hobby into Your Profession

Saturdays, July 14-Dec. 1 (Six online sessions: July 14, Aug. 11, Sept. 8, Oct. 6, Nov. 3, Dec. 1) 10 to 11:30 am, plus facilitated online interaction between sessions   $365 members/$395 others  ONLINE-ONLY CLASS

ATTENTION: THIS  CLASS IS NOW CLOSED

What is the most successful entertainment launch of all time? No, it’s not James Cameron’s Avatar. It’s actually Activision’s video game, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3. “The video game industry makes more money annually than the movie business,” says instructor Hilary Goldstein, “and the competition to become one of the few who writes about games has grown intense.

“I worked at IGN.com, the largest video games website in the world, for nearly a decade, spending the last two years as Editor-in-Chief. Currently, I am a contributor to more than a half-dozen magazines and websites including GameSpot, the Escapist, Venturebeat, and the Official Xbox Magazine as well as a marketing consultant for numerous game publishers. In that time, I’ve worked with dozens of writers, teaching them how to be successful in the games industry.

“Many gamers dream of having a job where they can write about video games. Every week, I get hounded with questions about how to get a job in the industry. Because it’s about video games, most people – even a lot of our journalist hopefuls – assume it’s easy to do. That’s not true. It’s actually incredibly demanding work that requires specialized writing skills that few know. A lot of intangibles factor into success in this field.”

In this online class Hilary will explain the role of journalists in covering games, show you how video games are made and marketed, talk about how to conceive, pitch and write articles, provide steps to build a fervent fan base, and give you tips for getting a job writing about what you love.

This course requires you download Skype (a free group communications tool). As members of a vibrant Web community, you will receive craft advice, motivation, and support through:

• Monthly 1.5-hour group Skype chat sessions online to discuss thought-provoking lectures on game design and game journalism. Transcripts will be available for students who are not able to attend.
• Submission to Hilary of up to four articles for written feedback, to be discussed during one-on-one Skype conversations at times that are convenient to you.
• Weekly email check-ins with Hilary to review goals, discuss progress, and address questions.
• A private Skype group where you’ll have the ability to engage in conversations with classmates, share writing, and discuss your favorite games, along with optional writing exercises to hone your skills.

At the end of the course, you’ll have a concrete plan to get your work in front of millions of readers.

Hilary Goldstein has more than 10 years experience in the video game industry and has published more than 2000 articles, ranging from interviews with gaming luminaries to hard-hitting critical reviews of some of the biggest games ever made, from Grand Theft Auto IV to Halo 3. He has worked with numerous editors, teaching a variety of important skills: effective headline writing, conceiving features, working with PR and marketing, editing, and more.


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