My First Gig

…as a professional writer could hardly be called glamorous, but it was a ton of fun and very fulfilling.

Back in late summer of 2010, a friend invited me to come by and interview for an app startup company. One of the guys over there heard that I self-published a fantasy novel and thought I might be a good fit to write content for their upcoming flagship fantasy app, Sovereign: Kingdoms. With no app development experience to speak of, I didn’t get the job. Not right away, at least.

I did have extensive database administration experience, however, and was pretty skilled with JavaScript, jQuery, and PHP, so they asked me to set up the back end for use with their social boards. I built robust social boards for Sovereign: Kingdoms and Tap Reef. Then they asked me to moderate it. And then run admin for it.

It was a great time for me. Being able to interact on behalf of the company, as well as being able to resolve issues for users on the back end, gave me a bit of a Wizard of Oz complex, and I loved it. I became online friends with dozens of regulars for both apps, all while I was resolving their technical issues in secret. Their feedback helped guide our content rollout for Tap Reef, and everyone seemed to be overflowing with goodwill.

Then it happened… After months of running the community boards, the head of creative and the lead developer for Sovereign: Kingdoms sat down with me. The game lead had left the company, and there was a vacuum to fill. Impressed by my writing skills, they asked me to step up as their content manager. Shouldering the responsibility and honor of leading the game’s story, working closely with the creative and development teams, I wrote all but two of the quests. I stayed up late almost every night making gear icons, building loot tables, seeding treasure, and generating monster tables based on the various types of environments found throughout the game.

All of this while wearing the face of the moderator. For anyone who remembers, my name was Garthrym.

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