Toiya Kristen Finley

Game Designer, Narrative Designer, Game Writer, and Editor for Schnoodle Media, LLC

Toiya Kristen Finley—writer, editor, game designer, and narrative designer/game writer—holds a PhD in literature and creative writing (Binghamton University) and is on the IGDA Game Writing Special Interest Group’s Executive Board. Some of her published games include Academagia: The Making of Mages, Fat Chicken, Verdant Skies, and Siren Song. She has written and/or edited for Chapters and Endless Entertainment, served as a game and narrative designer for Digital Myths, taught videogame writing for UCLA Extension Writers’ Program, and co-authored The Game Narrative Toolbox. Recently, she edited and contributed to Narrative Tactics for Mobile and Social Games: Pocket-Sized Storytelling.

Summit Description:

Narrative Tutorial

April 16TH, 2019
9:00am – 3:00pm

Have Pen, will Travel: Lessons from a Life of Freelance Narrative 

(Speaking with C.J. Kershner)

We’ve been called “narrative paramedics” and “paratroopers with pens” — freelance writers and narrative designers brought on to create, streamline, and occasionally Frankenstein stitch together the stories that are increasingly common in many independent and mainstream video games. Maybe you’ve considered this career path yourself but have questions, like “How do I get started?” Or “Where can I find clients?” Or “Can I actually use trauma shears and a parachute?”

In this session, professional freelancers Toiya Kristen Finley (Schnoodle Media) and C.J. Kershner (Polyhedron Productions) will provide advice and anecdotes on actions to take to set up your new storytelling-for-hire business and, hopefully, keep it running, based on their years of experience as well as interviews with other successful independent consultants.

Audiences will come away with an understanding of how to adopt and develop a freelance mindset, found a company, who best to approach to help run it, and ways to achieve sustainability.

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