As a writer who got shine from writing about video games, I have many acquaintances that I look up to. Around the time I first started taking video game journalism seriously, I discovered Torrence Davis’ website, which was The Bit Bag at the time. It was his podcast Video Game Warzone that helped me to realise that you could have a balance of professionalism and personality in the industry. I’ve been following his work ever since and I’ve even had the fortune of meeting him a few times.
While I’m nearing the 10 year mark in covering video games, Torrence Davis has been involved in the industry since the late 90’s. In his new book – titled Rebel Without A Pause Button – How I got Into Video Game Journalism – Torrence talks about his involvement in the Massachusetts arcade scene as a youth. His interest in computers and video games led him and some of his close friends to launch a magazine in the late 90’s called Video Game Time.
In the book, Torrence reflects back on his early successes with VGT. He reflects on all the freebies he received and the trips he got to go on – such as visiting the Playboy Mansion – as a result of being one of the early video game websites at the beginning of the worldwide web era. He gives insight into the difficulties of being a site owner back in that time and talks through his reasoning for eventually shutting the site down. Torrence eventually re-emerged with two more gaming sites and the book reflects on all of the new challenges faced with both of them.
Rebel Without A Pause Button – How I Got Into Video Game Journalism is a short but descriptive look into how far someone can go by just following their passion. The book doesn’t feel like someone boasting about all their merits and accolades like many memoirs I’ve read of this type. Instead, Torrence lays it all bare and shares the good and the bad. The latter half of the book becomes more instructional, as Torrence provides tips for conducting interviews, reviews and covering press junkets.
Not only did this book give me a look into Torrence’s mindset, but it also helped me realise just how far journalism and the video game industry has come. The book allowed me to revisit some of my happiest video gaming related memories.
I was sent an alpha version of this book to read, but the final version will have additional chapters. Look out for the official release soon, along with a final review from me here.