The Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America announced it will start accepting application for video game writers to join its ranks on August 1st. Game writers who are accepted will then have access to writing resources and will also be able to vote on the Nebula Awards, which is one of the major sci-fi/fantasy writing awards.
In order to qualify, you can use your writing from a game in any medium, as long as the game is in English, has some narrative element and is in the science fiction, fantasy, horror or another related genre.
Here are the specific income or sale requirements for joining:
- By making at least one paid sale of a minimum of 40,000 words to a qualified market, or three paid sales to qualified markets totaling at least 10,000 words. Game publishers may be designated as qualified markets using the already established process and criteria used to qualify fiction markets.
- By showing they have earned a net income of at least $3,000 from a game that includes at least 40,000 words of text (not including game mechanics) over the course of a 12-month period since January 1, 2013. Income can be in the form of advance, royalties, or some combination of the three.
- If no word count is possible, such as work done for a video game, prospective members can qualify based on one professionally produced full-length game for which they were paid at least $3,000, and with credits to no more than two writers clearly shown on the work.
The organization did note that salaried game writers do not qualify. This would disqualify many writers employed to work on games like Dragon Age, Mass Effect or any of the Telltale Games video games, which require a huge amount of sci-fi/fantasy writing.
Gamasutra says that SWFA’s Kate Baker told them that “the organization is already listening to feedback, and expects to make adjustments to membership criteria based based on applicant’s qualifications.”