Magazine Pitch Letter

Dear Shelley-

Have you ever thought about the demographics that aren’t being catered to? Picture this: a digital magazine targeting the female gaming population. The magazine would be comprised of at least 5 separate featured pieces of writing including interviews, lists, current events, game reviews, and more.. The finished magazine will be anywhere between 8 and 12 pages long, depending on how long each piece of writing ends up being. The magazine’s intended audience is specifically the female gaming population but will be crafted to apply to the gaming community as a whole. The project will combine writing and visuals on each page of the magazine – lists will be mostly visuals with less text, while the feature pieces will be mostly text with a few images interspersed. This sample from Polygon would be an example of what my interview with Whitney Hills could look within the magazine (imagine gender representation in the place of LGBTQA representation):

“But for Anthropy, having games tackle a broader spectrum of themes is just an inevitable outcome of having a more diverse community of game creators: “I’m not sure if all my games are about being queer, but my queer identity is always visible in them. I think representation is important … making people aware that queerness exists and representing queerness in games. And also reaching out to other queer people who otherwise feel very alienated in games.”

This magazine would be a fantastic idea because it offers a different perspective from the gaming community and would allow the female gaming community to have a specific medium to use as a source of entertainment and information. Adult women now make up a larger portion of the gaming population than teenage males, so now is the time to target them and offer a discussion of gaming that relates specifically to them. I should write this work because I have been a gamer all my life and have for the past few years been writing about gaming and gender issues, especially spending time criticizing visual media. My experience within the gaming community and as critic of new media would make me a good candidate to tackle a discussion of gender issues within gaming, and my experience with web design will come into play in the magazine’s design.

Thanks for your time,

Making Another Writer’s Decisions

After talking through my interests and project ideas with Erin, it was a lot easier to think through the various possibilities for genre and medium of the project. Not only did her suggestions help me out, but having to come up with project ideas for her helped me to think of more interesting ideas for myself. The list of ideas we came up with together were as follows:

  • A magazine targeted at a female gamer audience containing various topics (game reviews, game news, upcoming releases, controversies)
  • A website or blog from the perspective of a female gamer, talking about the gaming community and various experiences
  • An actual game concept treatment that works against the current representations of women in gaming

My first impressions of these suggestions is that the magazine sounds like an awesome project idea – it would be possible to combine a large variety of topics throughout something like an online magazine. This definitely combines my interests in studying feminism and gender representation in video games, and it allows me to translate this interest into a new media format. I would be most interested in pursuing making a short online magazine and perhaps even accompanying it with something like a Twitter account to get people aware that it’s something that is being created.

All of these topics would definitely be interesting and relevant to me, but as I’ve actually written a game concept design before I know how much work goes into them. For this reason I think it would be a little too much for me, especially to come up not only with game mechanics but the world, the characters, and the narrative as well. And to do it all in a way that throws out stereotypes respectfully while retaining good character relationships and story? I’m not sure I manage that in one semester. It’s a great idea, just a little bit too difficult for me.

I definitely had a pretty clear idea of what I wanted to do topic-wise; some of my favorite writing projects in college so far have focused on gaming and representation. I also talked about being interested in using new media for my project, so the fact that Erin suggested blogs or websites totally fit with my interests as well. It was really interesting to talk to her because she much prefers scientific writing rather than doing any kind of new media writing, and she prefers freedom in writing while I need to have some kind of rubric or structure to follow. Because of this I will be more likely to look for advice both from those that enjoy writing in a similar manner that I do and those that prefer a different style, as they will be more likely to think differently and have ideas I wouldn’t think of.

While I kind of already had an idea about what I wanted to do for the project, talking it through with Erin helped in terms of deciding what topics were most interesting to me and even thinking about other awesome project ideas like creating my own concept for a game. We talked about how I could pretty much talk about gaming gender representation in any genre or media I would like, and that a magazine or a blog would be the most fun for me.