I love the World Wide Web. Having information about anything I could ever want to know about readily available on a computer monitor is a concept that still blows my mind. I read my news online, find entertainment online and make many of my purchases online. It’s great.
Video games are another hobby of mine. Ever since I was old enough to hold a GameBoy in my hands, gaming took hold of me and never let go. After graduating with a degree in journalism and reading numerous websites dedicated to video game news, I decided I want to pursue a marriage of my passions and work in video game journalism. When I saw that this course, “Internet and Writing Studies, would cover not only HTML and CSS, but also website design, I knew it would behoove me to enroll. This class will help me achieve my goals.
As an undergraduate, I learned a lot about writing for print media. I wrote nearly all of my news stories for paper. I did not have any experience in writing for the web until I worked as an intern for a wine website called Snooth. I wrote some micro articles for the news section. Being my only experience working in an office setting, it was both challenging and insightful. I learned a great deal about wine, and tasted dozens, to boot. But because I did not have a grasp of how websites and online community engagement worked, and also because I was just an intern, I was unable to contribute as much as I would have liked to the website. From that experience, I learned that I want to empower myself in digital writing so I may become a part of an online team of writers.
The world of video game journalism is relatively new, but just like many other forms of journalism, it is now moving more exclusively online. As of this writing, Game Informer is the biggest, and perhaps final, magazine dedicated exclusively to video game news, reviews, features and culture. Just a few weeks ago, the 24-year-old Nintendo Power magazine announced it would cease publication. Video game news websites, such as IGN and Kotaku, are where the majority of video game enthusiasts get their news. Through humor, video and insightful editorials, they provide awesome reading and viewing experiences for their audiences. Their audiences are heavily involved in discussions on the latest game reviews, “top games” lists and announcements. This is what I want to be a part of in my career.
I have tried to teach myself HTML and CSS in recent months, but I could only learn so much without the proper guidance. This course immediately caught my eye when I enrolled in the digital media track of the M.A. in writing arts. I was apprehensive about the required courses for the program at first because I do not come from a creative writing background. I have found, however, that even in just a month’s time, I’ve already begun to discover new writing methodologies and become more comfortable in my writing. I am very excited at the thought of being able to share my experiences in both the digital media and core tracks on the web.
When I complete this course in December, I want to be able to feel confident in walking into an interview for a position at an online news publication and say I am proficient not only in coding, but designing, as well. By semester’s end, I want to be engaging with social media and sharing my thoughts about industry news and trends, just like the professionals do. I am hopeful that it will meet my expectations.