Jupiter Hadley is a Games Journalist with a love for indie games and game jams. She has been shortlisted for a Golden Joystick and British Media Award and is the co-founder for Indie Games Plus, Big Boss Battle UK and Indie Game Jams. We asked Jupiter, some key questions about getting into the games sector.
Explain your role like I'm 5 years old
It's my job to look at games from different angles, finding a way to write about and feature games to the wider public. I then write articles about games and game developers, following this point of view.
Take us through your average day at work
My work day is pretty wild, as I am a freelance writer (like most of the games journalist industry) which means that I spend some of my time working as a licensing manager and a community manager (for two different companies) and some of my time working as a games journalist.
To describe the normal journalism role, I tend to send out pitches, keep an eye on trends and upcoming games, take assigned work from slack, research and write up games. Sometimes that requires a lot of playing games, other times it requires research into unique angles that the game can then be written about. Once articles are written, they are submitted to editors. Depending on the editor, there might be some back and forth - notes to be corrected and clarified, images to be sourced - before the editor schedules the article up to go live on the site.
What was your educational and career journey into your current role?
I graduated from high school, but at the time I was recording Youtube videos for indie games that I liked. This was just a little hobby project, that made me feel like I was in the community, interacting with game developers and gamers alike. From there, I started writing down my thoughts on games on my own blog, and was able to write guest posts on gaming websites that currently didn't pay. This allowed me to build up a portfolio, get use to editors changing my work, and practice pitching - as well as pick up some free game keys to games I wouldn't have otherwise been able to cover.
After building a portfolio, I pitched to other sites and sometimes Tweeted out on social media (as I had built up an audience) that I was looking for work. Once you are in the games industry, you are in it. It's also worth mentioning going to events and visibly covering events as press was very helpful in immersing myself in other press groups.
What do you love most about your role?
I really love being able to highlight games that should be highlighted, as well as the flexibility of the role. I can work on articles and if I hit writers blog, wait a bit, before coming back to it.
What's the hardest thing about your role?
Chasing invoices and finding work. A lot of the role requires pitching out and never hearing back, which is a pain. A lot of other places just never pay their invoices, so you have to send a few emails to get it paid late. It's a challenge.
What key skills should people work on to do your role one day?
Being aware of trends, writing in a way that makes sense grammatically.
What advice would you give to your younger self looking to get started in the industry?
Start pitching earlier and don't get discouraged by not getting a reply.
Do you have any links to good articles or videos that you think might give some tips or advice to someone starting in your role?