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Archive for the ‘Freelancing’ Category

For those toting around a PSP, you now have a great game to buy and Primotechnology.com has the review for you:

Taking place before the events of the first two games, Chains of Olympus follows the adventures of merciless anti-hero Kratos, freshly employed by the Gods but no less irate from their endless demands. Tasked with overthrowing a plot to cast the human world into perpetual darkness and banishing the Gods to an eternal slumber, Kratos will travel across war-ravaged seas, demon-infested ruins, and even the smoldering pits of Hades itself, grudgingly working as the assassin of the Gods, until they one day fulfill their promise of having the haunting memories of his past atrocities expelled from his mind forever.

Click here to read more.

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Ever since I started freelancing, I’ve felt more creative and productive than I ever have in my entire life. I don’t know if it’s the fact that I’m taking control of my own destiny or the fact that I’m writing on a consistent basis, something that even novel writing doesn’t always afford, but I seem to open typing programs more. I used to freeze up when I saw the blinking cursor. I thought that only handwriting my work first would give me the creativity I needed but now I’m finding that I enjoy typing again.

 

Freelancing is fun. Doing research on something as simple as a news item has become something of a game for me. I set a deadline for myself and I stick to it. Reviews have definitely been the most eye opening. I’m playing games and reading magazines, not just because I enjoy doing both, but because I want to hone my abilities to adequately give feedback on what I’m doing, while also maintaining a high quality of work associated with that medium. I think it will pay off in the long run.

 

Thus far I’ve built something of a solid portfolio for myself, though I’d like to write a number of articles to add to the growing news feeds and reviews that I’m currently doing. I’ve been kicking around a number of ideas but I haven’t put any of them to paper yet. I don’t want to give anything away but one can be credited to my buddy Shane from work. We had a back and forth about the topic awhile ago and it got me thinking about the limitations of technology, both over-arcing and item specific. If possible, I want to work on that one first, because I think it has a good basis and solid footing.

 

I thought that freelancing would cut into my other projects but I’m finding that those projects are even more productive than they were before. Perhaps it’s because I can’t afford to waste time on frivolous things or maybe it’s because deadlines have helped me rein in my penchant to work on too many projects at once. Either way, I’ve finished things that I didn’t think I could finish and am well on my way to building a solid short story portfolio as well.

 

I wonder what the future will hold. No one knows, of course, but I feel as if I’ll get everything I desire. Maybe not everything, but definitely a good number of things. One can only hope.


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ghostsquadwiientry.jpg
Primotechnology just recently reviewed Ghost Squad for the Wii. Here’s an excerpt from the article:

You begin the game as part of the G.H.O.S.T, or Global Humanitarian Operation and Special Tactics, Squad, a group of specialized soldiers based in the United States and operating under the authority of the U.N. Their objective is to take out terrorist targets without leaving any traces of their passing. After receiving instructions from your Commander, you play as Alpha Team and find support in the way of teams Bravo, Charlie, and Delta. During the game, you fight the Indigo Wolves, a terrorist group seeking to throw the world into complete turmoil by capturing presidents and holding military personnel hostage. It’s your job to take them down at all costs.

Click here to read more.

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It’s been awhile since I’ve done anything with my WordPress blog. I’ve been so busy lately that my time on the computer is really only limited to working on projects and responding to email. I haven’t even gotten around to doing some of the things I’ve been meaning to do.Freelance Work

On Monday, I purchased the first game I’m reviewing and spent the last week playing through it, taking notes, and everything else needed to review it. I’m pretty satisfied with my review process but, like everything else, I’ll revise my method as I continue.

I spent a lot of my time this time around just taking notes on anything that popped up. I’ll revise that into a different approach for next time and note things in steps: Controls/Interface first, Story next, Graphics/Sound/Overall Polish last. Doing it this way will give me time to focus on the first thing you’ll notice when you play (besides graphics, which is how it plays), so on and so forth. We’ll see how that method works and revise it accordingly.

I feared that I wouldn’t have any time when I started doing freelance work but I find that there are more hours in my day than before. I think it’s mainly because I cut out all of the fat and stay focused on my projects, instead of drifting off and doing random things. I may be able to take on a few more freelance projects as I get further into freelancing as a career.

Comic Books

I’ve also been hard at work on my comic book series. I don’t know whether to say they’re comics or graphic novels or what have you but… visual storybook is too cumbersome. Whatever you want to call them, I’ve been devoting at least a far chunk of my time to writing.

Awhile back I decided to abandon writing out the panels and focus strictly on the dialogue. Once the dialogue is done, I’ll go back and do the panels. Thus far, Chapter 1 is complete and I’m taking a short break to let it mature. I’ll come back to it and revise what I’ve written and start fleshing out the panels the rest of the way.

This is definitely a story I’ll have to do in chunks, though, because of how large it is. I’d like to do 2 chapters per book (if it’s a graphic novel), as the first chapter in the arc will be the “gear up” and the second will be the climax. Either way, nothing will be set in stone or decided until I snag an artist interested in drawing for me… and that won’t happen until at least the second chapter is finished and ready to be paneled.

Other Projects

At the moment, I’m waiting on responses on “Ascendant Dream”, my first Crystalline Beauty novel. Until then, I’m not doing anything major with the series. Jen Lightfoot is working on Randel Gaylin’s portrait and I’m excited to see how that turns out. I might make some Emeraldwind wallpapers or icons.

I have a few short stories that I’m interested in writing and now that I’m done with the first chapter of the E.N.T.I.T.Y.O.X1 series, I’ll finish two of those before working on anything else. I’m pretty excited about them and I’m considering submitting them to magazines and podcasts, in the hopes of making a small bit of cash and getting some exposure. Of course, sharing the story is the ultimate ambition, but who wants to talk about that when FAME and FORTUNE are in the picture?

Other Real Life Matters

Taxes, taxes, taxes. I’m probably not getting as much back as I’d like to this year, unfortunately. I wasn’t really letting Uncle Sam have anymore than I’d let him take from me. I needed that money, and it helped us out a lot. I am excited about the rebate though. If it comes early enough, I might be able to start working on my office with some of the money.

I need to get around to actually selling this stuff that’s sitting in my storage area. I already photographed it and researched some of it… I just haven’t had any time to actually set up a craigslist listing for any of it. Not enough hours in the day and too many people/things that want my full attention for hours at a time. Maybe sometime this week I can whittle this list down without adding anything else to it.

Other than that, there’s not much else going on. Just trying to stay as productive as possible and not lose my mind. Well, I’m off to work on my review.

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There’s something about editing that I both love and hate. I guess all writers feel this way. It doesn’t help that I’m a perfectionist… to the point that it’s probably unhealthy.Whenever I finish writing something, be it a manuscript, lyric, or article, I always feel a burning need to re-read it. I’m ego-centric, I admit, and have a desire to see what my thoughts look like on paper. But once I start going through it… I end up re-writing entire sections for no reason other than to make myself “sound smarter” than I really am. Or maybe it’s for readability… Either way, I hack through anything I’ve written and destroy it before I’m done.

This generally leaves me with about 1/5th of what I originally wrote and the now burning desire to claw out my own eyes. Why? Burn out. Just as I’m a perfectionist, I’m a completionist… once the editing process starts, I can’t… just… leave it. I have to finish. In one sitting. This is a pretty tiring process.

So what does a perfectionst/completionist writer do? Write novels, of course! Since that’s what I’ve been “writing” my entire life (ed: I’ve finished a number of them but I’ve started/nearly completed at least 30 or 40; I’m just now seeking to publish one, though), it seems only natural that my idiot self would want to edit my work. Unfortunately, it means I’ve spent the last two years editing (after I finished writing in a little over a month and a half).

I think I am an agent/editor’s worst nightmare. It’s not that I don’t finish projects, because I do, it’s that I’m such a perfectionist that since they never feel finished to me, an agent has to rip the manuscript out of my cold, dead hands.

Any other writers feel this way? Have you finished something and had it published that you wish you could go back and re-do completely? Or add sections in?

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It wasn’t until a few years ago that I considered pursuing a writing career outside of novel writing. The idea of journalism had never really appealed to me and even though I did things like give reviews on video games or books I enjoyed, I never actually wrote my reviews beyond the fairly personal and grammatically free variety.

Last year, I got up the courage to actually step into writing as a career. I’d been growing tired of my day to day job and I needed a change. I knew it would be a long time before I could say that writing was my career choice but I also knew that there was no way I would be able  to make writing my career unless I actually put one finger… in front… no… that won’t work. I wouldn’t be able to do it unless I actually sat down and wrote.

Don’t get me wrong, I write every day, and I don’t mean blogs. I work on my novels on a daily basis and I’ve recently started penning my comic book series. I make sure to do a few pages of each a day and if I’m entering that point where I’m a little burned, then I make sure to at least do something related to my art. Sometimes it has nothing to do with my projects but most of the time it does. Any headway is good headway, even if it’s only a little. But this will only take me so far. Both of these avenues take promotion, which I’m not adverse against, and neither of these paths offer a sure-fire way to making a living. There are so many writers these days, it’s almost scary. The amount of informative blogs, self-published novels and comics, and independent and professional screenplays on the market are staggering. It can make someone who is an unpublished but avid writer since the day they could form actual words (and before even that, as I have some books from the 1980s that prove I was at least putting scribbles together on paper for as long as I could remember), such as myself, develop a deep-seated fear that I will never actually make any money with my writing. And that’s a very real possibility.

It dawned on me, however, that there are other ways to make money writing, while, at the same time, working on those projects (novels and comic books in my case) you’ve poured your heart into: freelancing. I’d never considered this route because I knew nothing about it. How did you get work? How did you maintain steady work?  How much were you paid for your pieces? Not to mention the fact that the idea of having my pieces read and critiqued by, perhaps, millions of people was almost too unnerving to think about. But last year, all of that changed.

I was, oddly enough, on Neogaf.com, like I sometimes am during the afternoon, when I happened upon a thread talking about a site that needed video game reviewers and editors. About a month or so before that, I had started getting an itch to “report,” not in the traditional sense, but in the “this is why you don’t/do want to use this product” kind of way. I can’t remember what triggered the itch, but it was there and it wasn’t going away. I looked at my fiancee, told her about the subject of the thread, then agonized over what to say in my application letter. I sent along a sample after responding and asking questions in the thread and waited.

I didn’t get a response back from that website, but there were other websites that were also looking for reviewers, newshounds, and more. I sent applications and samples to these sites and waited.

Less than a month ago, I got a response. It was one of the other sites that had been looking for people. They needed a reviewer and possibly someone to write articles and editorials.  We corresponded back and forth and found that I would be great as a reviewer and doing articles when possible, mostly because of my schedule and my lifestyle.

It was that easy… I suddenly became a freelancer. It’s not permanent and if they don’t like my reviews after a few submissions, they could easily sever ties with me. But I suddenly became a freelancer, in what amounts to the blink of an eye. There wasn’t any fan-fare. I didn’t need a degree in Creative Writing or Journalism. I didn’t even need to rub shoulders with industry bigwigs. I simply needed to send an application letter and a sample. I needed to take that first step. That’s all you ever need to take. I’m glad I’ve taken it… I can’t wait to see where the other steps take me.

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