28 December 2007

Hello 2008 (a.k.a. Getting back on track)

It's been a funny month, December.

I quit my job as a journalist and got a job in a local games development company (though I'm only scheduled to start in the 2nd week of Jan). Being between jobs, this also meant that I've had much more time to myself than usual.

In the past month, I've been busy getting my life in order - running all sorts of errands and doing stuff I otherwise wouldn't have time to do while I'm working.

I've also had plenty of time to think, and to reflect on the many things that have happened to me the past six years or so (i.e. ever since I left university).

Forgive me if you've heard this rant before (click here for a refresher) but this post has a lot to do with my career.

Long story short: I went to university with a rather odd dream, an unconventional for the time. I wanted to make videogames, by becoming a games programmer. Then I came out of university, bummed around for 9 months while unsuccessfully trying to come up with some game demo to boost my employment prospects.

Then I got into a relationship (which necessitated a job - it's expensive stuff, mind you). After thinking for a bit, I ended up becoming a tech journalist. So yes, it was a detour.

A bittersweet one.

I loved the life of a tech journalist, getting to do all sorts of stuff I'd otherwise never had the opportunity to do (such as traveling all over the world, interviewing big names in the IT industry, meeting all sorts of characters and crashing an expensive German sedan into a field).

I loved the work environment too, especially all of my fantastic colleagues.

And all the while, I kept telling myself that this was what I wanted. I kept telling myself I should be happy - after all, plenty of people were envious of my job. Yes, I was happy, but I kept longing for my original dream.

I asked myself whether I was blessed or just being foolish.

But now, looking back, it was a hell of a journey but the path eventually led me right back to my original dreams.

In a chance encounter, I heard about a potential job opening at a local games company. I had long thought that this ship had already sailed, but then God decided to throw a curve ball and gave me a chance to get back on the right track.

What surprised me was how difficult a decision it would be. I was very comfortable in my job as a journalist and I would be giving up a lot to pursue a career in game development.

I cast my net and - surprise - it turns out that I'm qualified to be a game programmer all along! Of course, it probably helped that I knew the guys at this company from some previous interviews I had conducted.

The irony of it all was that all of my experimenting with Pocket PC and J2ME mobile game development was unnecessary. I had what it took all along. I was much better than I thought.

If there was one thing I learnt from my previous job, it was that I could punch above my weight and push boundaries. I learnt that my attitude towards work was different from about 90% of the workforce. I was more passionate and more eager to try out new things.

So here I am, about to continue a journey I had abandoned some 5 years ago because I thought I wasn't good enough. I'm finally getting back on track. I'm going to become a games developer :)

I'm both excited and terrified at the prospects of beginning this new job, though. I've got loads of catching up to do and so many new things to learn.

I feel empowered. I feel like I've finally gotten my life back.

I am blessed.

Here's to a cracking 2008.


zandramas said...

happy new year!! congrats to your new job ! My Cow is going to be so jealous.... heheh u need and game testers?? he'll be more than happy.... and CONGRATS of course yr upcoming nuptials!!! very soon very soon! we miss u guys and we're looking forward to see u all soon!countdowning!! whoo hoo~

max said...


It is certainly good to see you doing what you've always wanted to do. Like they say, "onwards and upwards" I'm sure you'll do great given your vast knowledge of the subject area :D