JTP Articles RSS Feed | GameSkinny.com JTP RSS Feed on GameSkinny.com https://www.gameskinny.com/ en Launch Media Network Apply to GameSkinny's 2018 Journalist Training Program Sessions! https://www.gameskinny.com/z8dq3/apply-to-gameskinnys-2018-journalist-training-program-sessions https://www.gameskinny.com/z8dq3/apply-to-gameskinnys-2018-journalist-training-program-sessions Tue, 17 Nov 2015 02:37:23 -0500 GameSkinny Staff

There's a lot of content online. Personal blogs, YouTube videos, length forum posts, and more news outlets than you can count. Which means that unless you're running with the big dogs or have made your own way in the games journalism industry, a lot of that content is getting lost, overlooked, or drowned out. 

We think that's lame. 

So, we've built a place for intelligent folks like you to have your opinion heard, shared, discovered, and discussed. We believe in giving gamers their own spaces. And that's what GameSkinny is all about -- it's a publishing platform built for gamers from the ground up. 

Anyone can post on GameSkinny and get the full attention of our editors, but we also have educational resources available for passionate gamers who are looking to level up their writing skills. Our Journalist Training Program (JTP) is looking for applicants who want to gain real experience in games journalism and online publishing. 

Participants will work in an online newsroom environment throughout their nine (or ten) week sessions. You did hear us right -- online. Much like the online classes that we all took to avoid going outside, you can do the entire program in your pajamas if you want! And you still get all the experience and course credit you would get from an on-site training program. 

And the benefits don't end there. JTP members who complete one session are allowed to continue on in additional JTP sessions as veteran members or senior mentors -- which offers seasoned JTPers the opportunity to help manage new writers and get on-site editorial experience. 

If you want to jump to a specific part of our overview or go straight to the applications, use the links below to do so:

What will you get out of the JTP?

College students can use the JTP as an internship credit, and the program is suitable for listing as a professional experience on a resume. The JTP is not a paid program, but there is the opportunity to earn a little extra cash through our Bounty Program. It is also a 100% remote program -- so you can do your work at any time from anywhere in the world!

Assuming you successfully complete all requirements of the JTP, here's what you'll get out of it:

  • Valuable (and hard-to-get) skills and experience in digital journalism. You'll learn about various types of article writing, research, SEO, interviews, guides, and more!
  • A professional referral from the editor in charge of the JTP, which you can use on resumes and job applications. 
  • College internship credit. If you indicate your intent to seek credit on our application, we'll work with your college advisor and fill out any paperwork you need to receive course credit for the JTP. 
    • Note: This can apply to various disciplines of study. Aside from the obvious journalism credit, we've had JTPers seek credit for everything from regular ol' English degrees to disciplines like Marketing. 
  • The option to apply for a leadership role after successfully completing the program. We have a fantastic team of senior mentors who get further training in editorial, content generation, and the other mysterious behind-the-scenes skills that keep an online newsroom thriving. 
  • Consideration for current openings at GameSkinny when applicable. 
  • Earn money for views through the GameSkinny Bounty Program. 

Still not convinced that the JTP is right for you? Read some of our testimonials from past JTPers who finished the program and loved it!

Your Responsibilities in the JTP

In this program, we don't ask for much. As long as you show up, learn from the course emails, and do the work, you'll be in tip-top shape! As for the actual workload, here's what you'll be expected to do:

  • Writing 4 quality articles per week. You'll be writing five weekly articles of a few given types, according to the assignments laid out in your lesson emails. 
  • Reading lesson emails. Each week, you'll receive 4-5 lesson emails that you'll be expected to read thoroughly and understand, as they'll be invaluable in properly completing your assignments. 
  • Spending time in our team chat. You'll be asked to sign up for a few time slots a week that you dedicate to being present in our online chatroom, engaging with your fellow JTPers and picking up breaking news assignments. We're flexible, so we'll work with your schedule for these time slots!
  • Self-reporting your progress. You'll have specialized forums where you post weekly reports of what you've written, how you're progressing, and whatever you might need help with. 
  • Accepting assignments from our editorial team. Every now and then, our editors will hand out assignments based on your interests and strong suits. These assignments help feed our grand, site-wide strategy, so they're an important job you get to undertake. 
  • Other miscellaneous duties. There are a lot of other things that go into a successful voyage in the GameSkinny JTP. But fortunately for you, it's mostly fun stuff. Like...
    • Taking occasional breaking news assignments
    • Generating interesting and engaging content ideas
    • Interacting with the GameSkinny community in the comments section
    • Promoting your own content on social media
    • Communicating with editors and learning how to effectively listen to feedback
    • Meeting deadlines
    • Being a part of our awesome GameSkinny team!

It might sound like a lot, but we give you lots of time to adjust to how things work in the program and get you started on the right foot. You'll have a full set of staff and senior mentors to help you out every step of the way. 

Program Requirements

Here are just a few tips on how to apply, and what skills you'll need to be successful in your JTP session. 

  1. All applicants are required to fill out the application survey located at the bottom of this page. (Make sure you're applying for the right session/dates when you click!)
  2. A 15-20 hour time commitment each week for the duration of your session. This includes your time slots. (Remember, we're flexible!)
  3. A positive and adventurous attitude!
  4. Strong written communication skills. 
  5. A drive to improve your own abilities. 
  6. The ability to self-motivate and work independently from home...most likely in your Pikachu pajamas. 
  7. A thorough understanding and passionate love of the Oxford comma. (We kid...mostly. The Oxford comma is pretty great...)
Preferred, but not required:

The following qualifications are great to have and will help you immensely during your session, but are not required to participate. Most of the skills listed here will be taught through our lesson emails at some point during your session:

  • Gaming experience
  • Working knowledge of the games industry
  • SEO knowledge
  • Degree (working on or completed) in Journalism, English, Communications, Media Criticism, Game Design, or other related field of study
  • Previous writing experience (huge bonus!)
  • Writing samples published here on GameSkinny

All Program Dates for 2018

By clicking the links below, you can fill out an application for any of the upcoming sessions, so long as the application deadline has not passed for your session of choice. Each session is named alphabetically, and we accept applications on a rolling basis. Most sessions are 9 weeks long. But this year, there is one special 10-week sessions --  at the end of the year. 

Depending on how many spots and applications we have each session, you may not be accepted into the program until 2 weeks before your program start date. So if it takes a while for you to hear back from us, all hope is not lost! We're probably just waiting until a little closer to your session start date to get back to you. 

All Program Dates for 2018

Jester Session
    • October 15 -- December 21 (2018)
      • Application deadline: October 8
      • Note: This is a 10-week session

Click to Apply (October 15 - December 21)


Have further questions? Email Jonathan (jmoore@gameskinny.com) with "JTP" in the subject line. Do NOT send applications to this email address. Gmail's gatekeeping dragon will bury them deep in her inbox, never to be seen again. 

My Experience With JTP https://www.gameskinny.com/ked71/my-experience-with-jtp https://www.gameskinny.com/ked71/my-experience-with-jtp Mon, 28 Apr 2014 07:36:27 -0400 Delta Squad Reaper

I am here to share my experience with the Journalist Training Program, otherwise known as "JTP." For the first week, I was feeling excited and ready to begin my new path on a hopeful career as a video game journalist. After the first week came to a close, my family pushed me in another direction involving me in their petty issues and then my computer crapped out to which, I then began to feel discouraged and unworthy of doing it. Seven weeks go by, as I have no way of working and it turns out I missed the entire first round of JTP.

At this point, with beginning the second round soon, I am still discouraged and feel I should step down and allow someone better deserving of it get in the program. I feel I should just become a shadow on GameSkinny until I feel good enough about working towards the career. With my personal goal of moving to California and hitting a bunch of ups and downs, needing to tap into a career as soon as possible, all of these pitfalls are not helping me. I wanted to complete the entire first round with no issues, but some unseen force just didn't want that to happen. 

I know you may think I am just rambling on being a negative nerf herder, but really I am just sharing my experience as I have seen others do. I will say that JTP is an amazing program for the little I got to do. I met some great people including our jedi master Katy Hollingsworth, Lauren Puga, and many more (Too many to actually list). Amy White has also been of great help with my journey. 

I am also thinking of returning to school to work on a degree for game design, which gets me even closer in this world of games. While I am still contemplating joining the second round or not, I do appreciate the opportunity to join and learn even more. The program will teach you a lot about being in this business, and I obviously didn't have what it took to continue. If you wish to learn more and get better at your craft, this is the place to be.

I strongly suggest you to do it, only with the mindset that you love writing as much as, if not more than video games. Always be on search mode for news, and be prepared to work day in and day out until Katy tells you you have a day off. My failure and mistakes is another writer's gain. Enjoy your time with JTP.

- This is Delta Squad Reaper signing off.

Join Us for the 2014 Journalist Training Program Sessions! https://www.gameskinny.com/eqf8g/join-us-for-the-2014-journalist-training-program-sessions https://www.gameskinny.com/eqf8g/join-us-for-the-2014-journalist-training-program-sessions Mon, 17 Mar 2014 06:56:23 -0400 Amy White

Everyone starts somewhere. Are you ready for an online writing experience that will boost your skills and your resume? Well then...

Why Join the Journalist Training Program?

"Not gonna lie, it’s a pretty great feeling to see something you’ve written published online. It’s an even better feeling when that published something is on the front page. That’s the awesome part about GameSkinny – people actually read your stuff.

Sure, I have a personal blog and sometimes I write things there, but on GameSkinny, I’m a *real* writer with a real audience. That exposure comes with perks too. Since I started writing for GameSkinny, my Twitter following has grown and I’ve been asked to participate in things like podcasts and streams." - Lauren

This program is for applicants who want to gain real experience in online publishing. Work in an online newsroom environment in two-month increments. Participants who complete the program are eligible for:

  • A professional referral from the editor in charge of the Journalist Training Program for use on resumes and job applications.
  • The Journalist Training Program qualifies as a college internship for credit. Please indicate your intent to complete the program for credit during your application so we can help you work with your college advisor.
  • The option to apply for a leadership role in the Journalist Training Program in order to earn managerial experience.
  • Consideration for current openings at GameSkinny when applicable.

Each round lasts for eight weeks and students may participate in as many rounds as they like.  Applications are always open, though students should specify which eight-week rotation(s) they are interested in.

Program Start Dates for 2014

  • March 3rd
  • May 5th
  • July 7th
  • September 1st
  • November 3rd

Our program for 2014 concludes on December 25th

Apply for the Journalist Training Program

Traveling the JTP Road https://www.gameskinny.com/0nnj9/traveling-the-jtp-road https://www.gameskinny.com/0nnj9/traveling-the-jtp-road Fri, 28 Feb 2014 21:52:42 -0500 Mary Yeager

This isn't my first rodeo. I have been part of the JTP since June of last year. Its had its fun moments, as well as its stressful ones.You learn a lot of lessons in the JTP, including some that have little to do with actual writing itself.

SEO and Traffic

This is one of the most important lessons of the JTP. After all, you aren't writing to see yourself think. You want people to read what you write and respond to it. The GameSkinny JTP gives you the perfect platform to get in there, learn the ropes, and begin to gain an audience.


This one was a huge one for me to learn this session of the training program. You are not going to agree with everyone. On a platform like GameSkinny, other authors or commenters will just make you want to reach up and yank a huge hunk of hair out. Frustration will abound. But, you want to make it so you follow along with the program, talk to your pals to vent, and keep on trucking on.

Friendship and Contacts

This is one of my favorite aspects. You meet others like yourself that in the end, if it wasn't for them, you aren't sure you would've made it that week. Sometimes, when those views aren't where you want them, they are there to urge you to not give up. It's all about supporting each other along the way and growing as journalist.

I wouldn't trade my experience working with GameSkinny staff and journalism participants for the world. This session was a rough road for me and they have constantly been there for support, even outside of the writing parameters. It feels like a family.

From Wannabe to JTP - My JTP Experience https://www.gameskinny.com/lsx18/from-wannabe-to-jtp-my-jtp-experience https://www.gameskinny.com/lsx18/from-wannabe-to-jtp-my-jtp-experience Fri, 28 Feb 2014 21:26:24 -0500 Lauren Puga

Before the Journalist Training Program, I never considered myself a writer.

I was first and foremost a design school kid, who happened to be minoring in media studies - a weird hybrid of journalism and PR. When it was time to find an internship for said minor, I scoured my school’s job postings to find something interesting. Amongst the listings for stuffy office jobs and non-profit work, the phrase “video games” shined like a beacon of hope.  Hoping my extensive video game knowledge and above-average writing skills would be enough to qualify, I applied and, lo and behold, got in.

You’re a Journalist, Harry! 

The first day of the program, I woke up early, got dressed and was ready to write. Please note that this was also officially the last day I got dressed for work, as PJs quickly became my new writing attire. Unlike my past internships, the JTP allows me to work from home – or more specifically my bed.

Not gonna lie, it’s a pretty great feeling to see something you’ve written published online. It’s an even better feeling when that published something is on the front page. That’s the awesome part about GameSkinny – people actually read your stuff. Sure, I have a personal blog and sometimes I write things there, but on GameSkinny, I’m a *real* writer with a real audience. That exposure comes with perks too. Since I started writing for GameSkinny, my Twitter following has grown and I’ve been asked to participate in things like podcasts and streams.

My claim to JTP fame was an article titled The Flappy Bird Survival Guide: Tips, Tricks, and Cheats for Improving Your High Score. It’s exactly what it sounds like. After hearing everyone and their mother bemoan the fact the Flappy Bird was the most impossible game in the world, I decided to write a little guide to ease pain. That "little" guide blew up and currently has over 160k views.

While I do wish that those views were for an article on a game I actually care about (sorry Flappy Bird), the success of that post did teach me the importance of timing, keywords and SEO – tools I couldn’t have fully grasped if it weren’t for the JTP and its director, the wonderful Katy Hollingsworth.

The Cake(walk) is a Lie

If I’m making the JTP sound like it’s all fun, games, and publishing, it’s because I haven’t yet touched on how much work it can be. We’re expected to write an article a day, five days a week, on top of a weekly challenge. Maybe that doesn’t sound like a lot, but many of us have school or jobs or lives, that can get in the way. As a full-time student with a part-time job and a crappy immune system, I regretfully missed a few of my own daily articles. Thankfully, the program is very forgiving. Time management is key however, and something I fully intend on working on in this next round.

Speaking of which…

Because I’ve had such a great experience in the first round of the JTP (and partly because I need school credit) I’ll be carrying on to the next round. I said I used to never consider myself a writer, but now I do. The JTP has not only helped me to become a better writer, but it's given me the confidence to see a future for myself in game journalism. I love video games, I love writing, and I love the JTP for giving me such a great opportunity to embrace all those things. 

JTP? For Me? I'm So Glad to Be Here https://www.gameskinny.com/vjil3/jtp-for-me-im-so-glad-to-be-here https://www.gameskinny.com/vjil3/jtp-for-me-im-so-glad-to-be-here Fri, 28 Feb 2014 13:25:54 -0500 MandieM

I wanted to take a bit of a departure from my typical video-game-obscurity writing, and pass on a sincere thanks to the JTP staff and editors. 

I was chosen in week four, so I missed a good portion of the training. In any other situation, I would have been hopelessly behind and lost, but the editors made sure that I was able to literally dive right in from where I was.

I did have a slight advantage, as I have been both a writer and editor myself professionally, but I hadn't ever ventured into pure journalism before. Journalism and creative writing are really where my true desire/heart lies, but I've spent the last few years doing what pretty much everyone needs to do--making enough money to survive by writing articles and copy.

The JTP program was, firstly, a breath of fresh air after years of copyediting. At first, I struggled a little bit with my newfound freedom.

It was a little something like this inside my brain: "What do you mean there aren't assigned keywords and lengths? Choose my own topics? Are you nuts?"

But I jumped right into the pool, and lo and behold, I started swimming. My first article probably had quite a bit of fluff in it. I also wasn't aware that short articles were ok, so it was over 1200 words. I tend to write long anyway, so no big deal. Really, I think it's better to get in the habit of long form articles early (although fluff will always be fluff. Long form with concise info is great!) and then work shorter later on. I like to really dig into topics and try to find the obscure angles, so it worked for me.

Then the Great Flappy Bird Debacle of 2014 happened, and I wrote an article on it that quickly made the front page. Not kidding, I actually took screenshots of the first 10 articles on the homepage and maybe I shared it to Facebook with a link and then bragged extensively. 

It's a proud thing to have your article on the homepage, regardless if all the promoted articles get there eventually or not.

The only regret I have is missing a few daily articles due to illness and work. Some days, I broach 18 hours of work...that's something I've worked on to make more time for Gameskinny in the future. That would be my number one advice for newbies; write every daily article, even if it has to be short and you think it's terrible or you're uninspired or you are bored, or hungry, or lazy, or busy...just write. A short article won't take you more than an hour, and the feedback you get will give you the skills you need to advance your writing. And eventually, you'll find your niche and comfort zone and it will be much more effortless.

I also had some funny experiences--like writing a Goat Simulator article, and accidentally posting it 28 times. The Great Goat Debacle of 2014 was quickly resolved, thanks to the talented IT staff. 

It's been so much fun that I've decided to come back for another round. So I will get the full experience this time, right from day one.

Writing-wise, I learned to tighten up my writing, choose topics, and write to my audience, which is significantly different from writing for my typical audience. It was nice to write a little bit more casually, but my ability to research deeply certainly helped me out quite a bit. I feel a bit as if I'm not qualified to say much more than this, as I missed so much. Expect a follow-up at the end of the next eight weeks with full opinions.

In the mean time, I love it here...and they absolutely cannot get rid of me know. Really--I stuck my fingers to the keyboard with glue...oh....wait......

Hey...pssst. My header image is taken from The Oatmeal. You should totally check him out, he's awesome. The rest are from memegenerator or memecenter.

The JTP Experience In My Eyes https://www.gameskinny.com/ipfoo/the-jtp-experience-in-my-eyes https://www.gameskinny.com/ipfoo/the-jtp-experience-in-my-eyes Fri, 28 Feb 2014 12:24:13 -0500 Brandon Morgan

What did I learn through the JTP? That’s a tough question to answer, at least one written down. I learned plenty about SEO, the gaming community, my style of writing and how to improve it, and the writers who, like me, came to the JTP searching for some more knowledge of the games journalism world.

I’ll start with the brilliant writers I’ve met along the way. These are some of the kindest, most helpful individuals who genuinely know and love their craft. They strive each day to better their writing and make a name for themselves in the gaming industry, which is a cutthroat place. Plenty of them are doing just fine and will continue to do fine, if not better.

I’ve made plenty of friends during this period, some of which will continue after the JTP comes to a close this week. While I haven’t had the pleasure of playing any games with anyone quite yet, I’ve learnt a lot and received plenty of help from these people as well as had some odd conversations. Goats have been circulating for quite some time.

The feedback I have received on my work in these past few weeks has earned me some new skills with my writing, plenty on SEO, topic choice, editorials and more. Thanks to the work Katy did with me I am more confident in my writing and with the topics I put stock in. I carefully select the right work that will make an impact with the community. While I can always improve upon this, and intend to, I feel I did quite well getting a grasp on it.

Don't mind the images, they're random.

In my time in the JTP, I may not have received the most views or comments, but I’m pretty sure I made some waves in the gaming community. My Titanfall rant earned me plenty of hate-fueled comments and began a war between two sides of the gaming community. With around 400 comments and counting between GameSkinny and N4G, I am quite proud of what I accomplished there.

Coming in as a news writer, I focused far too much on that during my time in JTP. I’ve begun to come up with more ideas for good editorials and will continue to do so. Editorials are fresh and unique and will lead to more readers in the end.

I’ve decided to continue with the next JTP.

I feel I’ve learned plenty here in these eight weeks and can only learn more in the next one. I hope to see more writers looking for a start in the games journalism world take this shot now.

A Love Note to All GameSkinny's Aspiring Writers https://www.gameskinny.com/yx78h/a-love-note-to-all-gameskinnys-aspiring-writers https://www.gameskinny.com/yx78h/a-love-note-to-all-gameskinnys-aspiring-writers Wed, 26 Feb 2014 18:07:12 -0500 Fathoms_4209

A few up-and-comers are starting to realize what they have here at GameSkinny. I'm here to tell you that in fact, it's even more of a godsend than you know.

Video games are legit; they're big business and they're full-on mainstream. It stands to reason that video game journalism will continue to rise alongside the industry and it's going to be a very active field in the years to come. This is a doubled-edged sword because on the one hand, it means more publications will pop up, thereby giving you a chance to get on board. On the downside, it means competition is going to be even more brutal than it is now.

Frightened? Don't be. You're smart enough to prepare.

A bunch of kids writing blogs in the basement? Not anymore

When I started looking into the prospect of writing about video games, it really was just a bunch of teens living at home writing about their favorite hobby. There were very few actual professionals, as even the top publications of the time didn't exactly feature Pulitzer Prize winners. The industry was in a transition stage; it was growing up. As it grew, so did its fans, which meant that millions were reaching that "first job" age.

Nowadays, this is a true profession. Established publications want journalism, English, or communications degrees. They want experience. They want you to understand the basic tenets of the trade, and they want you to be professional. When I was young, just loving games and being semi-literate was all you needed. But now, you actually need talent and qualifications. Yep, just like any other professional field.

And that's precisely why GameSkinny is so important

I didn't have a GameSkinny back then. None of us did. I'm actually a little bitter that such a fantastic learning tool showed up 15 years after I broke into the industry. Do you realize that what you get here for free is so invaluable that it's difficult to explain?

The Journalist Training Program is exactly what gaming needs right now. And it's your best opportunity to learn and grow. The editors here will quickly and accurately critique your work; they will offer appropriate suggestions and give you a chance to discover your own strengths as a writer. You will learn about the importance of SEO (Search Engine Optimization),  you'll pen more eye-catching headlines, and you'll continue to fine-tune your approach and style.

You're going to see a lot of testimonials as time rolls on. Coatedpolecat's story is only the beginning. If you take advantage of what is offered, and you're patient and diligent, you will earn the critical tools required to take the next step.

Balancing passion and reality is tough, but you can do it!

"Do what you love," they say. Of course, if you can't pay the bills, doing what you love suddenly doesn't seem so attractive. When it's not even realistic, you have to bite the bullet and try something else. No matter what you do, no matter what you accomplish, always remember that writing in any field is exceedingly challenging, and you'll have to roll with the punches.

Take me, for instance. My career dates all the way back to 1999 and the original GamerWeb. Since, I've written for four online publications (Kikizo, AskMen, PSX Extreme), three print publications (newspapers), and a copywriting ad agency. Titles have included everything from Staff Writer to Features Editor to Community Manager to Editor-in-Chief and everything in between. I was in the running for GameSpot's Sr. News Editor role last year - even flew to San Francisco on their dime to do the interview - and I'm writing and honing four different books.

And yet...I might be weeks away from dropping it all and going off to sell cars or insurance or something. That's just how unforgiving all of this can be.

The key is to remember that what you love doesn't have to be your only form of income. Your passion might be put on hold, but it'll never die. Writing here at GameSkinny and participating in the JTP is fantastic, but even just writing the occasional story and contributing to the community will help. It will help in a variety of ways; one critical way is that it will keep you writing.

Writers are like sharks...stop swimming and they die

Well, the will to write may die, at any rate. GameSkinny gives you the opportunity to keep that flame alive, regardless of what your day job may be. I made the mistake of getting away from serious writing for a little while, and that only resulted in a bunch of bad habits (some of which I have yet to break). What you want to do is embrace the opportunity afforded you here at GameSkinny, because it's the perfect way to balance your love with your everyday responsibilities.

And who knows? Get good enough and you might look back at GS in five years with a wistful smile: "That's where I got my start," you'll say. "I'm here now because of them."

GameSkinny's JTP - What I've Learned In 8 Weeks https://www.gameskinny.com/lo05x/gameskinnys-jtp-what-ive-learned-in-8-weeks https://www.gameskinny.com/lo05x/gameskinnys-jtp-what-ive-learned-in-8-weeks Tue, 25 Feb 2014 16:56:10 -0500 Coatedpolecat

For some writing is a hobby, others it's a means for food on the table. In the last eight weeks being involved with GameSkinny's Journalist Training Program (JTP), I've changed my tune on what I'd like writing to mean for me.

Thanks to numerous exercises and working out my writing muscles daily, I've learned a few things to hopefully better prepare me when looking for my first paying gig. Hopefully one day I can look back on this as a stepping stone to greater things.

Lets talk about how YOU feel

If you would've asked me last April when I started writing again, "do you really think you'll be able to make money doing this?" After the initial burst of laughter, I'd of told you "No." The JTP really made me do some soul-searching on the subject. Do I not take myself seriously enough? Is this just a fun hobby, or do I plan on feeding my kids with this career path?"

I used to be a musician and always enjoyed the attention, but more importantly I enjoyed the emotions felt creating that piece of music. Much like writing, I feel like I've accomplished something with each article posted. The feeling of knowing someone may actually enjoy your art, your opinion, your understanding of the industry - that feeling is like none other. That is what draws me to writing.

Through my head-in-the-clouds feelings 'n' all, the JTP kept me grounded. Not to say the editors knocked me down and rained on my parade, quite the opposite. They let me know what I was doing wrong, and how to fix it, daily. Not unlike a teacher, both Jay Ricciardi and Katy Hollingsworth (the only JTP editors) were very patient - and still are - with my lack of commas and understanding of proper punctuation.

Over the course of days and weeks, Jay and Katy repeated themselves over and over and my writing began to slowly improve. Along with better writing came better comments and notes from the editors. That in turn built up my confidence. Confidence, come to find out, is imperative in this industry. Despite my improvements, at times I'd measure myself to others, something that is not wise to do.

I went from having 10k views in 8 months, to an additional 10K views in 8 weeks(!). There were some other JTP-ers who were doing that on a daily basis. The feelings of inadequacy set in. My writing began to suffer briefly, making obvious mistakes, and having a pretty bad outlook on what I was doing. I eventually overcame this issue, but hate to admit it still happens.

Oh, I get it now

Part of the reason my views increased wasn't the fact I created some quality content. The JTP and its participants showed me how to use social media efficiently. With the basic knowledge and understanding of those sites, my page views increased.

Once I understood where to put content, I learned all about SEO tactics (Search Engine Optimization) from GameSkinny's very own Ashley Shankle. The series of articles encompass the basics of good titles, to tags in your articles, even how to link correctly in-article. One thing that stood out to me was knowing how to title an article, it can make or break the article in some cases.

For example I wrote about how Rock, Paper, Shotgun mistakenly thought a jazz musician named Eric Reed, was voice acting for a non-violent indie space sim, RymdResa. In reality it was a college kid with the same name.

Thanks to that week's challenge we had to write out 5 good, and 5 bad titles for a few articles and submit them for review. "Rock, Paper, Shotgun Misfired With RymdResa’s Voice Actor," was one of the alternate headings I sent in. The original was much longer, included their ages, names, and what happened. Needless to say, it was a rambling train wreck. Changing the title doubled the traffic on the article.

The importance of taking that extra step shows through so much when writing, from the research you do on the topic to taking time and playing with Google Trends. "What you put in to it, is what you'll get out of it," applies to the JTP, the games journalism industry, and life in general.

It's share time

What have I learned from the last 8 weeks? I've gained confidence in my writing. I've learned invaluable knowledge of SEO tactics. I've learned that I'm one in the hundreds of thousands vying for the same paid writing positions.

This is an industry crowded with talent, and that's scary. I've also learned this is something I want to pursue. I still have a lot to learn, but I want to learn. I want to grow as a writer, I want to experience success by doing what I'm passionate about.

However, I will not be returning for another session of the JTP. I feel I need to retreat into some books that will give me a better understanding of how to write, and how to thrive in this industry. I will however, continue to write for GameSkinny and be a part of its awesome community. Hopefully one day I can look back on this as a stepping stone to greater things.


An Unexpected Experience: The Journalist Training Program https://www.gameskinny.com/tn66i/an-unexpected-experience-the-journalist-training-program https://www.gameskinny.com/tn66i/an-unexpected-experience-the-journalist-training-program Tue, 03 Dec 2013 14:12:41 -0500 J Nicole Miller

There aren’t many internships for creative writing students, so I was feeling resigned about looking for a journalism internship. I clicked through the results on Internships.com, looking for something that would get me professional experience in writing and wouldn’t bore me to death. Then I found GameSkinny.

Growing up with a brother who was a huge video game fan kind of predisposed me to loving to game myself. So an internship that involved writing about video games? Sign me up.

Over the past four months, I have learned so much about writing. Some of what I learned can even be applied to my fiction writing, and I wasn’t expecting that. I learned what people responded well to and what didn’t go over so well. I also learned how to write engagingly and how to draw readers in. As I hope to be a novelist, attracting a readership is vital to my future success.

I have also gotten to try my hand at editing. This has been especially beneficial to me as I have been considering the possibility of going into the publishing industry as a book editor. By editing the writing of others, I have been able to determine the best way to give feedback in a way that is courteous while still getting my point across.

Aside from helping with my writing and editing, I have also learned a lot about the video game industry. Previously, I only knew bits and pieces, mostly things my brother had told me or what I'd read in Game Informer. Now, however, I know a lot more and can hold entire conversations about topics that were previously unknown to me.

Participating in the Journalist Training Program has been invaluable to me, and I am so glad that I applied. It was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made.

GameSkinny's Journalist Training Program: Come Write Over! https://www.gameskinny.com/95kbg/gameskinnys-journalist-training-program-come-write-over https://www.gameskinny.com/95kbg/gameskinnys-journalist-training-program-come-write-over Mon, 02 Dec 2013 23:45:20 -0500 Stephanie Tang

Four straight months of rollercoaster GameSkinny reporting is drawing to a close, and the first iteration of GameSkinny's semester-long Journalist Training Program (JTP) is beginning to wind down.


Having weathered five phases/editions and the various transformations of the GameSkinny Internship since its inception earlier this year, I can safely say this has been at once the easiest and the hardest version of them all.

Is that mixed up? Not to me.

Then and Now

The early versions of the program broke us all up into groups of about four or five, with very specific extra jobs - leading, editing, social media, and extra writing, designated to each person. We were very insulated; aside from our team members, we didn't know anything about the other teams except that they were some hovering, nebulous competition. We begrudged GameSkinny every single view that wasn't ours and ours alone.

And that doesn't sound right, does it?

Phase by phase, the teams opened up and we began learning more about some of the people behind those team banners. In this version, the focus had shifted to individual performance and an interactive landscape for the entire body of people involved in the program. It wasn't "us or them," it was "we are all getting better," and we had begun to realize that.

Now, how is it easier? In groups, your experiences tend to veer towards the extremes - you will find yourself with either great teams or horrible teams. At the worst, I would find myself coming home at 7-8 in the evening after a full day of working to find that someone (if not two people) on my team had begged out for the night and I would have to write 2-3 articles by midnight in order to meet our daily count. I didn't have to worry about that this time around - I had my own assignments and deadlines and nobody else's.

But that's hardly smooth sailing. There was no group to help me do my promoting - and we are in this program to help generate steady traffic for GameSkinny, not the other way around. That fell squarely back on me.

And it was long! Four months is a long time to be writing something each and every business day, especially if you are juggling two other jobs as well like I am. Throw in the usual things that will happen in life, particularly with a grueling schedule (overworking, getting sick, computer problems, etc.) and you can how things can get a little nightmareish.

So why do it?

The number of internship programs and experiences like this rapidly shrinks once academics are taken out of the picture. The moment you're out of school, the working world automatically assumes you've got everything set - and we all know that is not true.

Don't misunderstand - Katy and the GameSkinny team get it. Life happens. Some of my experiences are more of a testament to my tendency for overworking myself rather than the demands of the program. All you have to do is let them know. 

They aren't slave drivers. But they have standards.

I signed up for this. It wasn't always exactly what I thought I was getting into, but it was something I could do - and do well. I'm here because I like writing, I like video games, and I want to write about video games.

And now I am!

I'm not perfect. But I have made marked improvement in my writing, in my social media presence, and my ability to speak my mind. I'm proud of that. And now I have a clearer idea what I want to do, what I can do, and what it takes to get there.

I'm proud of that too.

So, should you?

Are you reading this because you're thinking of signing up? Do you want to test the waters and consider whether you just want to write a piece every now and again or dive headfirst into creating a body of work?

Do you want to know if GameSkinny's Journalist Training Program for you?

First, think about it this way: it's work.

Does that daunt you? It's hard, grueling work that other people get paid for and you don't. Sure, playing video games is lots of fun... but imagine having to write about ones that you don't know about or care about in the least. On a deadline. And you have to make it interesting

Starting to sound like a book report on War and Peace due next period? That you have to read out loud to the class? And the principal? And your mom? It's not a bad analogy. 

But keep in mind, it's also rewarding. I mean, think of doing that book report... and nailing it. It happens. Then you have written proof of your output; both your successes and shortcomings. You have a collection of articles that you can track your progress and improvements with. And you have a body of work that you can take to a future employer if you want to continue working in this field - not a stack of book reports, but stuff that's gone through an editor and made it out to the public.

Here's something else: it's an opportunity you get here that you can't necessarily get elsewhere - particularly once you're out of school. I didn't realize it at first, but the number of internship programs and experiences like this rapidly shrinks once academics are taken out of the picture. The moment you're out of school, the working world automatically assumes you've got everything set - and we all know that is not true. Not by a long shot.

If you can spare the time and the effort, it doesn't matter how bad you are going in. If you're serious, you'll improve... and you might surprise yourself with the results. 

Whether you want to guest write, join the workshop, or jump straight into the JTP, consider getting started right now and write for GameSkinny! 

(If you're interested in reading/listening to my thoughts on previous iterations of the program, you can check out my past writeups for the Beta Phase and the later Bastion Phase.)

A Look Back At The JTP Internship Program https://www.gameskinny.com/1k0t8/a-look-back-at-the-jtp-internship-program https://www.gameskinny.com/1k0t8/a-look-back-at-the-jtp-internship-program Tue, 03 Dec 2013 13:18:38 -0500 GabrielKross

Since August, the gaming industry has seen many things, meaning I have seen many things. If not for the internship, I likely would have missed  a lot. There were several conventions that I followed to see the next big thing in gaming as it happened.

What really matters though, is the fact that I learned where my strength in writing about games lies. Guides have brought me success as an intern. It was a free day and I was stumped for article ideas, so I decided to write a guide. My Titan Normal Mode guide was an instant success.

This was a pretty difficult fight, when FFXIV: ARR first released. This is also where my success as a guide writer began.

I turned it into a regular thing, writing guides as I cleared content, and my view count increased dramatically. Unfortunately, as people started clearing content themselves, my guides had less relevance. I was running out of relevant material that I could clear consistently. I still haven't reached a point where I can cover the Binding Coil of Bahamut.

During that decline, the Lightning Strikes Event came out for FFXIV. I got up early for each chapter's release to post a guide for it. These guides surpassed all of my previous view records. My For The Winsome guide has hedged out my previous top two articles from back in August.

A screenshot I took from the Lightning event.

It was a real eye-opener to see how timing effects an article's success or failure. Timing was one of the biggest lessons I've learned this time around, and it will be something I continue to capitalize on in the future.

If you're interested in taking up an internship at GameSkinny, now would be a good time to sign up. I definitely look forward to seeing many new faces in the next phase.

My Experience With GameSkinny's Journalist Training Program https://www.gameskinny.com/te2rx/my-experience-with-gameskinnys-journalist-training-program https://www.gameskinny.com/te2rx/my-experience-with-gameskinnys-journalist-training-program Thu, 05 Dec 2013 06:48:42 -0500 The Ian M

I first joined GameSkinny back in August of 2013. The Journalist Training Program didn't exist yet, it was just the Survivor phase of the internship program.  I saw a listing on Reddit, applied and  whoop! I got in! 

I joined up in the hopes of experience, something to fatten my resume with, perhaps a letter of reference? 

I started out with some experience writing, but has GameSkinny definitely helped to build on that. I've become far more familiarized with the world of internet newswriting, a stronger, more efficient linguist and wordsmith. 

The Journalist Training Program and GameSkinny itself are a great launchpad for aspiring writers. Staff editors provide regular and honest feedback with articles. The JTP provides an open, friendly, and  competive platform to network and interact with other aspiring  game journalists, industry professionals, and assorted awesome people. 

If you fit the following infographic, I'd recommend writing for GameSkinny.



Proving Myself Wrong: The JTP and Personal Revelations https://www.gameskinny.com/1soxv/proving-myself-wrong-the-jtp-and-personal-revelations https://www.gameskinny.com/1soxv/proving-myself-wrong-the-jtp-and-personal-revelations Tue, 03 Dec 2013 16:15:21 -0500 Destrolyn.Bechgeddig

I had been doing journalism for over three years, specialising in stage and film, before I saw the advert in a GuildLaunch newsletter for GameSkinny's video games journalism internship.

I thought "Why not?" I've played video games throughout my entire life, enjoying them just as much as my other visual art pursuits. So, with the wealth of both paid and unpaid writing experience across numerous publications to my credit, I decided to try my hand at video games, thinking it would be an easy switch.

I was proved very wrong.

A Different Kettle of Fish and a Different Breed of Audience

I had written for plenty of online publications before, and had knowledge of how to use social media to build a solid audience. I didn't think it would be too different for video games. However, I found that for most of the Journalist Training Program (JTP) I was struggling to build one, experiencing less than 100 views a day, bar the odd spike.

It's a bitter pill to swallow when you approach something with confidence only to find that you suddenly have to accept that your approach isn't working anymore. To make things more complicated, my enthusiasm for covering events such as Comic Con and Eurogamer Expo meant I was never had the time to willingly sit back and properly evaluate how I might change this.

Once I did, I started discussing with editors what types of articles I should try to focus on to build an audience, following tips on how to make more effective use of tags, and learning how to use social media platforms that are more effective than what I've been used to, such as Reddit. These have really helped, and now I'm beginning to see a definite and sustainable growth in my views.

Pushing My Boundaries

The JTP has also made me expand my knowledge of video games and the areas for which I write about, often venturing into unknown and/or uncomfortable territory. Part of this has been done by force through daily assignments. Even though I was sometimes tentative and grumpy at first, I found that even if I was unfamiliar with the subject matter or format, I could still write decent copy if I put my mind to it. The biggest challenge for me was covering eSports, especially the League of Legends tournament at Comic Con.

Once I got past this, I became enthused to broaden my writing and style. Specifically, I have now started to write guides in addition to the reviews and opinion pieces which I'm more comfortable with, and have also started to experiment with video content.

Words, Words, Words

I also found that I have really started to change my style. For theatre and film I was often quite free and "flouncy" with my use of adjectives. I've had to become more straight forward to attract and maintain a gaming audience. Most importantly though, the change was needed because of length - specifically word count.

There is so much more to talk about regarding video games compared to theatre and film. Although these genres share aspects like narrative, aesthetics, and sometimes acting, video games have things like interface and interaction to take into account too. Flowery language was causing my word count to be quite long, and cutting it down was the only way to stop my articles from becoming "tl;dr".

Now, I feel that my writing is clearer, more concise, and more readable than it has ever been.

Surprise, Surprise!

All in all, this has been a challenging four months. The biggest surprise was realising that I needed far more work and development in my writing than I had previously thought. The JTP has not just been about adapting to writing about video games, it has also made me a much better writer overall. There has been turmoil, and, to my shame, the odd tantrum. But this program is something I'm very proud of participating in, and I have seen invaluable growth in myself as a result.

tl;dr picture courtesy of http://tldrsocial.tumblr.com/.

The GameSkinny Commercial https://www.gameskinny.com/mzyfm/the-gameskinny-commercial https://www.gameskinny.com/mzyfm/the-gameskinny-commercial Fri, 01 Nov 2013 11:07:03 -0400 Rothalack

In a previous post, we asked you, the awesome citizens of GameSkinny, to tell us some of your favorite things about GameSkinny. We had an amazing response and it made me very happy to see it all. We also promised that some of these quotes would end up in the GameSkinny commercial. We weren't lying! 

The commercial has already aired on the Virginia eSports Association(VeSPA) live stream for their current LoL tournament. In fact, tomorrow is the finals and I will be attending (I will get a post together of some coverage for that)!

Don't be discouraged if your quote didn't make it into the commercial, this is the just the first of many! Featured quotes came from DemonicSkies and Germaximus.

Be Part of the GameSkinny Crew at PAX East! https://www.gameskinny.com/fg71o/be-part-of-the-gameskinny-crew-at-pax-east https://www.gameskinny.com/fg71o/be-part-of-the-gameskinny-crew-at-pax-east Thu, 24 Oct 2013 09:12:30 -0400 Amy White

We can't totally spill the beans on PAX East yet, but we have big plans, and you're a big part of them. For several folks, we'll be springing for Friday and/or Sunday day passes. (Sorry - Saturday and 3 day sold out already.) Others will be getting full on 3 day Press Passes.We are limited on the number of Press Passes by PAX East itself, I don't yet have the numbers.

We'll be having a meetup near the convention to hand out shirts, swag and just hang out as a team. While at the convention we'll be sure you're decked out in GS gear, and assignments and pre-coverage tips will be plentiful as we near the event. Folks with Press Passes especially will be expected to do some serious coverage, networking and so forth, but everyone will have goals to work towards (while also having a blast at PAX!)

Have your own tickets?

If you already have your own tickets, no problem! If you want to be part of the meetups, swag and coverage teams, just indicate that in the comments below.

How to Respond if You Want In

Comment and tell us:

  • What kind of pass you'd want (Press, Friday, or Sunday)
  • Why you're interested in going (To cover the con from a certain perspective? To report on a particular game? To eat bad convention center food?)
  • Your T Shirt Size
  • Links to any event coverage you've done on GameSkinny if applicable
  • Link to your favorite article (of yours) that you've published here so far
  • Are you open to being on a panel at PAX East with other people from Gameskinny?

How we'll decide who gets passes


You don't need to include this info in your comments, we'll check before assigning passes.

  • You must have published at least 5 articles on GameSkinny.
  • If you are a member of the Journalist Training Program, you must be in good standing. Katy will be vetting all JTP members who request passes.
Things that fill us with overwhelming positive bias:

You don't need to include this info in your comments, we'll check before assigning passes.

Can't wait to hang out with you guys at PAX East!


How to Apply for the GameSkinny Journalist Training Program https://www.gameskinny.com/qmf69/how-to-apply-for-the-gameskinny-journalist-training-program https://www.gameskinny.com/qmf69/how-to-apply-for-the-gameskinny-journalist-training-program Mon, 17 Mar 2014 06:39:53 -0400 Amy White

Everyone starts somewhere. Are you ready for an online writing experience that will boost your skills and your resume? Well then...

Why Join the Journalist Training Program?

"GameSkinny's internship has changed everything for me.  This is what I want.  Without the encouragement of my team, the helping words of Amy and Katy and the wonderful people taking time to read and comment on my articles, I might not be going down this path." - Reilly

This program is for applicants who want to gain real experience in online publishing. Work in an online newsroom environment in two-month increments. Participants who complete the program are eligible for:

  • A professional referral from the Editor in charge of the Journalist Training Program for use on resumes and job applications.
  • The Journalist Training Program qualifies as a college internship for credit. Please indicate your intent to complete the program for credit during your application so we can help you work with your college advisor.
  • The option to apply for a leadership role in the Journalist Training Program in order to earn managerial experience.
  • Consideration for current openings at GameSkinny when applicable.

Each round lasts for eight weeks and students may participate in as many rounds as they like.  Applications are always open, though students should specify which eight-week rotation(s) they are interested in.

Program Start Dates for 2014

  • March 3rd
  • May 5th
  • July 7th
  • September 1st
  • November 3rd

Our program for 2014 concludes on December 25th

Apply for the Journalist Training Program