By Coreymw 12 Comments
Depending on how you use it Twitter can be a fantastic tool. Some people use it to talk with friends, others use it for business. I use it to find and communicate with people who share the same interests. Those people might be real life friends, people I've met in multiplayer games, or developers and journalists I found via the service. Over the last three years I've learned a few things about people, specifically those I want to work with or for. I'm going to drop some knowledge so pay attention.
The first thing you need to do, assuming you want to make it in the games industry or become a games journalist, is to figure out who you like. Go through the credits of games you adore. If you liked the art style, find the artists. Find out who wrote some of your favorite reviews or editorials. Once you've got a list of people who's work you enjoy put their name and twitter (name twitter) into a Google search. Start following them.
The second thing you need to do is interact with them. I know people that won't say anything to the those who's work they admire. You can't be afraid to talk to them. Most developers or journalists are more than willing to speak to you, so long as you act normal. If you're interested in AI programming, follow an AI programmer and get his or her opinion on best practices. If you follow Ken Levine, don't ask him every day to give Bioshock Infinite secrets. You'll get blocked or ridiculed and nobody wants that.
If you're a writer you need to share your work on Twitter. I've asked some of my favorite journalists for advice on something I'm writing and they've given it to me. The same goes for anyone getting into development. Share what you are working on, if nothing else Twitter acts as a great mouthpiece. Give and get feedback, share your work. Those two things are important.
The goal is to build a report with those who are already in the industry. Because getting to know people on the inside is never a bad thing. For example, I've spent the last 2 weeks discussing an indie developers game with him. I'll throw out an idea and we talk about it. It's nothing official, but in the future they may ask you to help in a more official capacity. Someone might tell you that the chances are slim, but there won't be a chance unless you put yourself out there. Make your opinion known and contribute. Be it Twitter, Facebook, Google+, developer forums, whatever. To only write or develop mods and put them on your blog isn't enough. You have to get your work out there and Twitter is fast and easy.
There seems to be a common theme among developers and journalists, and that is you have to know someone. The more people you know, the better your chances. Or so it seems. If you reach out to someone and they don't immediately respond do not get discouraged. If they're a developer they could be in crunch trying to ship a game. If it's a journalist they might still be sleeping, you never know. There isn't much else to share. Get out there and mingle. Share your work and have a voice.