It’s no secret that game writing is a demanding profession. In order to write quality games, you need to have a firm understanding of the process, and be able to execute on your ideas quickly and efficiently. But what if you’re struggling to find the time to get everything done? That’s where goal setting comes in. By setting realistic goals for yourself, you can make sure that you’re getting the most out of your time.
Let’s explore these topics in more depth and they’ll help you become a game writer in no time!
Understand the demands of game writing
In order to do your best work, you need to fully understand the demands of game writing. In general, a single playthrough takes about 10 hours for an experienced player-being able to finish a full playthrough in 8 hours is a great goal that you can strive towards. In terms of number of words per hour, you should shoot for at least 2500 words per hour-that’s not counting any editing or revision you need to do! You can always refine these numbers later on, after you get a better sense of how long your writing takes.
Use tools like Trello
Trello is an online project management tool (see workflow tools) that allows you to create lists of items and then break them down into subtasks. This will be important for making sure that your goals are realistic-after all, if you don’t break down each task enough, you won’t really know how much work goes into achieving them. For example, instead of having a goal like “write 5 pages by the end of the day,” your goal would be something more like “write a rough version of the opening scene, a detailed description of the main character, and a final dialogue for one quest.” You can use Trello to keep track of your goals.
By setting goals and using tools like this, you’ll be able to achieve more in the span of time that you have available to write. Do you feel like you could be more productive with your time? Try setting some goals and see what happens!
Set realistic goals for yourself
By constantly refining and revising your goals, you can always make sure that the time you have available is being used as efficiently as possible. Let’s say that, right now, you set a goal of writing 15 pages in a day. However, after doing some time tracking, you find out that writing 4 pages per hour is your average speed-so instead of 15 pages, you’re actually shooting for 60. Using this method, you’ll have realistic goals to strive towards every day!
Use a timer to stay on track
It can be easy to lose track of time when you’re writing-often, hours pass by without you even noticing. That’s why it might be a good idea to set up a timer right on your desk that reminds you every hour that it’s time for a quick break. This will help keep you focused and on track throughout the day -you don’t want to end up forcing yourself to work 12 hours a day if you only have 8 available.
Boost your motivation and morale by taking time off
All of this hard work needs to be rewarded every once in a while! As game writers, we’re lucky enough to be doing what we love for a living-but that doesn’t mean it isn’t important to take some time off for yourself. By doing things like taking walks, getting good sleep, and reading in your spare time you can have the energy to put in extra hours when you really need it. By being realistic about what you’re capable of at any given time, you’ll be able to use that valuable downtime to recharge!
Stay organized and keep your focus
When you understand the demands of your job, it becomes much easier to set goals that are achievable. With the right planning, you’ll be able to avoid all kinds of stress and burnout-and who knows? Maybe someday soon, you can even write a whole game in one day! If you’re working with a team you can try gamification aspects as well!
Get help when you need it
Everyone hits a wall sometimes-and that’s okay! If you need help with your project, why not hire one of the many talented writers available on elance or Upwork? Try to keep yourself motivated and focused throughout the whole process.
Rome wasn’t built in a day, and it certainly wasn’t built by only one person. So why should you carry the grunt of the workload? Once you’ve established some success, you could even employ a virtual assistant to take some of the mundane tasks off your hands so you can focus on writing more.
Celebrate your successes!
Don’t let all of your hard work go unnoticed. At the end of every day, take a moment to reflect on what you did that day by tracking it down in your journal. Reward yourself appropriately with things that are good for your long term health! Don’t go for the easy celebrations like binge drinking with your friends til late in the night. This will only ruin your next writing day!
Perhaps you can play some games, watch some great movies & various other cultural events. Gaining knowledge from other writers is important as it will give you a contrasting view to your own work.
If you’ve managed to do all these things, you will be well on track to be a more productive video game script writer!