On the last day of the 2019 Toronto International Film Festival, my wife and I attended a screening of the documentary There’s Something in the Water. Based on the book by Ingrid Waldron, the film aims to signal boost the atrocities of environmental racism being perpetrated by large corporations and the Canadian government in Nova Scotia. Before the start of the film, we were treated to a guest appearance by one of the film’s producers: Ellen Page.
Yes, the Ellen page of Juno, Inception, and The Umbrella Academy fame. After the introduction, we watched the film and ended the event with Ellen answering audience questions. Walking out of the theatre, two things deeply resonated with me:
- The perpetrators of the atrocities need to be held accountable for the damage they’ve done to the lives and environments they’ve destroyed
- She used her platform to try and make the world a better place by raising awareness to an issue that she believes in fighting for
Years ago, I wrote a piece about my Sheik Amiibo. As part of that post, I hastily took a picture of Sheik and Zelda standing together. Not thinking much about the artistic merits of the shot itself, they were placed on top of a fighstick with a picture of Spider-Man and I in the background.
Years later, while mining my archives for content to post on the In Third Person Instagram account, I found that picture. I showed it to my wife and asked her, “Hey, what if I post this picture with the caption, ‘Two sides to every story’?”. She replied, “Can you bring those Amiibos to me?”
One of the trendiest phrases in NBA jargon is “load management”. This is the practice of forcing healthy players to sit out regular season games as a means of keeping them fresh for the playoffs. Though its a touchy subject – as it devalues the NBA season while robbing paying fans of their opportunities to see the best players at times – we’re starting to see the potential benefits in this strategy. Case in point: Kawhi Leonard on the Toronto Raptors this past season.
Coming off the previous season where he only played 9 out of a possible 82 games due to injury, the Toronto Raptors put Kawhi on an aggressive load management program to keep him fresh. Instead of playing all 82 games, he played about 60, while skipping at least one of two games that were scheduled on consecutive days. Kawhi might have been visibly limping by the end of this past season, but he had enough gas in the tank to lead the Raptors to their first ever NBA championship. Though we’ll never know for certain, there’s a chance his body would have broken down prematurely had he played the season in full.
While I am not a superstar basketball player, applying the concept of load management to the way I manage In Third Person may not be a bad idea.
Over the past year or so, I’ve spent a lot of time trying to establish the In Third Person footprint across different online platforms. The blog is home base and should continue to be for the foreseeable future. Twitch has been a major focus of late, having spent hundreds of hours streaming, tinkering with my equipment, building episodes of Boss Rush, and repurposing content for other platforms. Much of that content goes into my Instagram, where it’s used as a space for stream highlights, screenshots, conversation starters, and sneak peeks into my life outside of gaming.
I’ve achieved some success, but there’s also been a lot of failure. The most notable of those is my presence on YouTube.
2018 was a year of growth for In Third Person. From expanding to Twitch, to ramping up my social media presence, to connecting with friends old and new, to raising money for children in need as part of Extra Life, the In Third Person experience ballooned dramatically. Coming from a place where I created and maintained the blog for the nine previous years with no ambitions of reaching an audience beyond myself, it was definitely a shock to the system.
In fact, it’s a shock that I’m still reeling from well into 2019. Despite the many successes of last year, I can’t shake this sense of unease that has taken over me when thinking about what this passion project has become. After lots of introspection and a private conversation or two with others about this dilemma, I finally think I know the root issue.
I entered the video game blogosphere in 2009 with one simple goal: share my thoughts on gaming with the world. There were no ambitions on my end to be the next IGN, PewDiePie, or Angry Video Game Nerd, but I felt like I had a lot of things to say and maybe I would find some sort of audience along the way. In that time, In Third Person has generated over 400,000 pageviews, over 30,000 video views on YouTube and Facebook. With the Amazon Affiliate program, I’ve even made a few dollars here and there. Nothing that allows me to quit my full time job, but some bonus scratch is always welcome.
Truly thankful to you and everyone else that has supported my musings for the better part of a decade. That being said, the world of being a content creator is very different in 2017. Seeing it evolve, and taking the lessons I’ve learned along the way, let me take a look in the mirror and see where I stand.