Digital Editor of Game Informer Magazine. Brian got his start writing about music for a small independent site before jumping over to the games industry. He co-founded VGW and ran the site for four years before joining the Game Informer staff. Brian’s previous work can also be found at outlets like Kotaku, IGN, Joystiq, Official Xbox Magazine, and Biography.
WHAT LED YOU TO START WORKING IN DIGITAL/MEDIA PUBLISHING?
I’ve been writing on the side since my college years, starting out in music before jumping to video games. In my full-time jobs after college, I was running my own website and doing freelance for both print and web. In 2014, I was offered a position at Game Informer as associate editor. Shortly thereafter, our digital editor announced he was moving on from our team, and with a software QA background from before I joined Game Informer, I offered to handle the responsibilities in the interim. I guess I did alright because a few months later, I was offered the position full time.
In my position as digital editor, I work with our production and video teams to deliver experiences the print version can’t through things like embedded videos, interactive galleries, and links to supplementary articles.
WHAT DOES A TYPICAL DAY LOOK LIKE FOR YOU?
Honestly, a typical day for me has little to do with our digital issue. The vast majority of any given month, my main responsibilities are to function as any other editor on our staff would. I cover news on our website, write game reviews, travel for previews, and attend events. We all kind of function as general editors, even if we are department leads. Because of that, it’s hard to really nail down a typical day for me. However, once we get into the timeframe where the digital issue is in production, I try and focus on getting that together.
While working on the digital issue, my typical day consists of interacting with our awesome production team to add value to our digital subscribers, and proofing the PC, tablet, and mobile editions for both content and functionality.
WHAT’S YOUR WORK SETUP LIKE?
My work setup is pretty unique. I don’t use any revolutionary productivity tools or apps when it comes to my roles as digital editor – we have a shared spreadsheet on Google Drive for our proofing notes if you want to count that. However, I do have a huge collection of gaming toys on my desk, as well as a 4K TV. That is definitely something I couldn’t have when I was working as a computer consultant!
WHAT DO YOU DO TO GET INSPIRED?
Inspiration comes from a lot of different places. When I’m working on our digital issue, I like to motivate myself with music. In writing, I think the biggest inspiration is my peers in the industry. So many people who work in this industry do amazing work each day. Seeing them drives me to become better at what I do.
WHAT’S YOUR FAVORITE PIECE OF WRITING OR QUOTE?
I hesitate to name a favorite quote or written piece, much in the way I hesitate to name a favorite band or movie. Those tend to change based on where I am in life and where my headspace is. My favorite quote could be a hugely insightful piece of advice passed on by someone I consider to be a mentor, or it could be a funny tweet from Jonny Sun. I feel like it changes by the day.
WHAT IS THE PASSIONATE PROBLEM YOU ARE TACKLING AT THE MOMENT?
I don’t really have a particular problem that I’m chasing at the moment, but I think it’s fair to say I’m always looking at new ways our digital magazine can take move beyond what can be offered in its print counterpart.
DO YOU HAVE ANY ADVICE FOR AMBITIOUS DIGITAL PUBLISHING AND MEDIA PROFESSIONALS WHO ARE JUST STARTING OUT?
My biggest piece of advice is to keep writing and keep networking. It took me years and years to get a full-time gig doing this. Now that I’ve reached this point in my career, I can say that the years of giving up my nights and weekends to write for little or no money on the side of my full-time job were worth it. If this is truly what you want to do, keep pushing forward and your hard work will pay off in some way.