One Writer’s Journey

November 29, 2016

Advice I Rarely Follow, or Write What You Know

Filed under: Uncategorized — suebe @ 1:15 am
Tags: ,

guard-1816311_1920Last week, I got a message from a RedLine editorial assistant.  Would I be interested in working on a series about E-sports?

I happened to be on the treadmill when the message came through but I hopped off and ran upstairs.  “E-sports?” I asked my son who was playing CS:GO. (As was explained to me, that stands for Counter Strike: Global Offense.  “It’s an acronym, Mom.”)

Anyway, I bugged the boy.  “E-sports?”  He looked over his shoulder at me.  “What about them?”

“Does that mean FIFA-type games or professional gaming?”

“Professional gaming.  Why?”  I showed him the list of possible topics and he pointed to the first one on the list.  “That would be the best match for you.”  I quickly dashed off a reply and got back on the treadmill.

Write what I know?  I could follow that advice but it would be pretty lean around here.  Instead, I adapt it to write what I’m willing to research.  It doesn’t hurt that I have an enthusiastic gamer in the house.  And I do play a handful of games — mostly various versions of Call of Duty.

I know about gaming as a hobby but professional gaming?  There are tournaments.  You can win prize money.  You can gain sponsors.  I can name a handful of games but that’s about it.  Two days ago I didn’t even know that South Korea is the Hollywood of professional gaming.

How do you proceed when you aren’t writing what you know? With research of course. So far I have 3 sources and 5 pages of notes.  This isn’t a particularly long book — less than 4000 words — but I’m going to need a lot more information.  I have about 6 more online articles to read, 3 print articles from the library and two books to pick up.  Research is, not surprisingly, key.

But just in case I am taken in by a faulty bit of information, I’ve got a consultant lined up.  His grandfather asked if he was getting a consulting fee.  “Nah, but she’ll take me out to dinner.”  Giving birth to your consultant certainly has its benefits.



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