Call for Writers -- 2013

It's been almost four years since our last Call for Writers, but the time has come again for us to turn to the boundless talent of our community and shamelessly beg for your pretty words and clever wit. Previous Calls for Writers have brought to us such talent as Julian "Rabbit" Murdoch (who, to date, has not been responsible for us going out of business) and Russ "Fletcher" Pitts (who eventually flew the coop to help run The Escapist and now Polygon). Now we are looking for the next great GWJ writer.

Writing for GWJ is currently a volunteer effort, but it is an opportunity to build your portfolio, get feedback from a supportive community and develop your skill. And, in truth, what we are looking for above all else is excellent writers who want to help produce content for us because they have a passion for this community and for the games industry.

The thing about writing in the gaming space is that there are no promises. That said, many of our writers have gone on to have successful freelance careers and write for countless publications from magazines to some of gaming's most recognized websites. We also have an active community of writers who support and help guide one another, and, as I suspect you already know, our readership is exceptional.

If you are interested in becoming a recurring writer for GWJ please read on for submission information.

NOTE: Submissions deviating from the guidelines below will not be considered.

What to Submit: Please submit a 750 word - 1000 word original commentary on any topic relating to the video game industry. We are not looking for reviews, previews or non-gaming related content.

Submissions should be in a Word Document format and attached to an e-mail. E-mail entries should be sent to [email protected] with the subject “Call for Writers '13 Entry.” Any entries submitted to an incorrect address, with an incorrect subject or without proper attachments will not be considered.

Submissions should be double spaced with traditional 1” margins.

Do not submit links to your blog, old articles on other sites, or your resume. We are looking for original, unpublished material which would be suitable for publication on our front page.

Writers retain all rights to submissions, and we will not print or distribute your submission without prior approval.

When to Submit: Submissions will be accepted through 11:59 pm CST February 8, 2013.

Things You Need to Know: GWJ expects all writers to participate in a peer feedback and editorial review process.

We do not guarantee that a new writer position will be made available if submitted drafts fail to meet our needs or standards. This isn't a contest where we announce a winner. It's a job application. By the same token, we retain the right to terminate writer relationships at any time and for any reason.

We are unlikely to be able to provide feedback on drafts or explain "why wasn't I selected?" While we are looking for excellent writing, we are also looking for that voice that just fits. The reality is that we will probably have to say no to some genuinely talented writers in this process. If it makes you feel any better, we don't like doing it either.

Tips of Crafting a Good Submission:

Be creative — seriously, points for creativity
Hook us from the start — We tend to get a lot of submissions, and are easily distracted.
Proofread — Typos, that’s a paddlin’.
Edit, tighten and improve — Your first draft can be better. Get someone to look at what you write, take your time and put something together that stands out.

Good luck and we can’t wait to read your articles!

Comments

I suppose Google Docs makes sense. You can also submit that way.

Jonman wrote:

Hell, I'm in again.

Last time around, I really enjoyed knocking together an article. For all I know, it made Elysium's eyes bleed with the awfulness of it, but you don't try, you don't know.

If that's true, I think that means you won.

Elysium wrote:

I suppose Google Docs makes sense. You can also submit that way.

Yay!

momgamer wrote:

AP style (which is what GWJ uses) has the rule that the punctuation marks are always inside the quotation marks, even though you and and I all learned better back in English class.

Those AP guys are sound like morons.

Hmmm, I'm tempted to try my hand at this. I love to write and have a couple of published pieces, but I've never really considered the lofty heights of Goodjerdom.

So I'm going to put out a potential idea and see if it sounds plausible. One thing I've noticed living here in Seattle is a number of successful people who also play video games quite competitively. I'm thinking about writing about my love/hate relationship with those who not only make a lot more money than me but who can also school me 7 ways to Sunday in TF 2 or COD.

I'm just worried about writing about a trend that may not in fact exist - that is, hardcore online gods who also find the time to balance high-powered work lives.

And in terms of AP Style, you have to keep in mind that it's designed less for logical reasons and more to make life easier for reporters on deadline.

I'm not sure if I will submit something or not, but it has been a boost to my ego to mentally listen to my words being read by Graham Rowat.

jdzappa wrote:

So I'm going to put out a potential idea and see if it sounds plausible. One thing I've noticed living here in Seattle is a number of successful people who also play video games quite competitively. I'm thinking about writing about my love/hate relationship with those who not only make a lot more money than me but who can also school me 7 ways to Sunday in TF 2 or COD.

I'm just worried about writing about a trend that may not in fact exist - that is, hardcore online gods who also find the time to balance high-powered work lives.

Dunno if the trend actually exists, but it sounds like there's an easy (and maybe inaccurate) correlation to be drawn. Highly motivated individuals are going to work hard *and* play hard, no?

Jonman wrote:
jdzappa wrote:

So I'm going to put out a potential idea and see if it sounds plausible. One thing I've noticed living here in Seattle is a number of successful people who also play video games quite competitively. I'm thinking about writing about my love/hate relationship with those who not only make a lot more money than me but who can also school me 7 ways to Sunday in TF 2 or COD.

I'm just worried about writing about a trend that may not in fact exist - that is, hardcore online gods who also find the time to balance high-powered work lives.

Dunno if the trend actually exists, but it sounds like there's an easy (and maybe inaccurate) correlation to be drawn. Highly motivated individuals are going to work hard *and* play hard, no?

I think you're right that the same traits that make people successful in real life helps them as competitive players. However, I'm less interested in writing about why the trend exits versus my feelings as a guy who struggles to even find time to game. It's similar in some ways to what my working wife goes through looking at the "alpha moms" - you know, women who work in high-powered jobs but who still have time to come home and be perfect Martha Stewart-style moms. It doesn't matter that their jobs probably afford them certain shortcuts that regular working moms can't afford, namely maids and nannies. They still make us mere mortals feel lame.

They have better build orders and have practiced mental checklists. Also, the life game is rife with lots of unfair IAPs and clan activity. This strikes me (success in work AND gaming) as a rich topic for personal opinions and stuff. I'd be interested in reading something like that.

Upon further reflection, I've come to the realization that I wouldn't be able to manage one article per week due to the sheer insanity of already trying to do so much with so little time. Which is a better reason not to try than "I think I suck".

Good luck to everyone else!

Aw hell. Might try and give this a go.

As I said over Twitter while I was traveling to RabbitCon this past weekend, one of the finer things to happen to me on this earth was when GWJ invited me to post some stories on the front page.

The Writer's Guild is a great place to work at the craft, and criticism is always convivial and honest. Everything I've written here, and several pieces that have yet to see the light of day, were made better by this team. And wordsmythe will never let you look like an uneducated fool if he can help it.

So... If you have a thought or an inkling, submit something. It's worth the trouble.

Upon further reflection, I've come to the realization that I wouldn't be able to manage one article per week due to the sheer insanity of already trying to do so much with so little time.

To be clear, we are not specifically looking for a once a week writer from this. That would be something we'd be happy to look at for whomever we take on board, but one or two articles a month is probably more reasonable to what we are looking for as far as a commitment.

Elysium wrote:
Upon further reflection, I've come to the realization that I wouldn't be able to manage one article per week due to the sheer insanity of already trying to do so much with so little time.

To be clear, we are not specifically looking for a once a week writer from this. That would be something we'd be happy to look at for whomever we take on board, but one or two articles a month is probably more reasonable to what we are looking for as far as a commitment.

I'll think on it, but one of the things I've recently learned is 1) I like making videos! and 2) They take a really, really long time/amount of hours. I feel like if I'm going to keep doing videos then the amount of time/thought I'll have available for coming up with articles will be decreased.

I might try and pull something up nonetheless.

I'm too laconic.

Elysium wrote:
Then, he realized that, despite that, he just had to sit down and do the work, like it was a job.

This!

In the long run, it's not about whose the best writer. It's about who can you depend on to deliver to the deadline, and who is willing to put in the work. Don't get me wrong, writing something worth reading is important, but that comes in time from just plugging away.

This is indeed the case. We can make your phrasings better, but we can't make you think up ideas and put words down on a regular basis.

wordsmythe wrote:

We can make your phrasings better, but we can't make you think up ideas and put words down on a regular basis.

We can't? Aw, I just renovated my dungeon!

ClockworkHouse wrote:

Unfortunately, the schools' representatives couldn't reach an agreement on the inclusion of the letter "U" in certain words, the placement of punctuation relative to quotation marks, and a fixed definition of the word "fanny".

Ah, the U. My favourite thing to tease our Canadian neighbours to the north about (read:aboot).

<music> Who gives a @(&% about an Oxford comma? </music>

;)

I'm mildly interested, but I am about as far away from being a writer as you can get (chemical engineer). I've never submitted anything remotely like this... I do get a lot of likes on facebook sometimes though... heh... I am also addicted to the dreaded triple period sentence ending... I'm sure it has a name...

My fears are two-fold. There will possibly be a severe lack of interest in my topics. I have no real writing skills and have never done it for more than school or work reports. I may still give it a try.

manta173 wrote:

I'm sure it has a name...

It's called an ellipsis...

And it is NOT a sentence ending.

Well that's a new one to me. I will have to look up proper usage then.

I use it... well... pretty much all the time...

I'm a *definite* maybe this time around. Certainly I've been slacking on the game editorial front. Anyhow, I'll see how things look after my big Feb. 1 deadline. After that, I expect to have a few spare hours to finish up that editorial piece I've had on the backburner.

You folks are killing me.

But: The ellipsis does not end a sentence. Rather, a sentence trailing off should be punctuated with an ellipsis followed by a perdiod. "... ."

wordsmythe wrote:

You folks are killing me.

But: The ellipsis does not end a sentence. Rather, a sentence trailing off should be punctuated with an ellipsis followed by a perdiod. "... ."

Cold medicine make keys funny.

It's spelled "Pernod", and it will make the keys funny.