Make Deadline, Sleep Too Long, Drink Tea, Panic Attack
Freelance editor, writer, copyeditor
Hi, I'm Jensen Toperzer. I am the 4th alternate in RPG Superstar 2014. I'm currently a freelance copy editor, editor, and layout specialist because I can't seem to get a steady job (LF JOB). I have a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing: Nonfiction. I'm a PAX Enforcer. In the past, I've worked for ZeniMax Online Studios on The Elder Scrolls Online (as a QA Functionality Tester, nothing glamorous) and Wired Magazine on a lot of things. My life is very strange.
It's been two years since I last played Pathfinder, so I think for that I didn't do so bad.
I first encountered tabletop RPGs when I found my mom's copy of the Holmes Basic set (3rd edition, 6th printing, published 1979 with Keep on the Borderlands instead of In Search of the Unknown)somewhere in the attic. The set was complete with dice, my mom's miniature, and two of her old character sheets, one of which was on the back of a playbill for a summer stock theater company she was in. She only ever played one game, to her knowledge, on tour with Oliver, and loved it so much that she bought the boxed set... only to find that she didn't have the time to play, and none of her friends were interested.
I immediately fell in love. I wanted to play so badly, but I didn't have any friends who were interested at the time, and my mom was too busy (she's a theater professor and an actor). Eventually though, in high school, I finally found a group of people through a summer camp who wanted to play 2nd edition. My first character ever was a 2nd edition Wild Mage named Blayze Auren.
I then picked up 3rd edition, and later 3.5, which is when the bulk of my playing took place, during college. My original DM decided that he hated 3.5 edition and stuck to 2nd. When 4e came out, my friends mostly played that, though some turned to Pathfinder. I dabbled in both, but then Graduate School Happened. I managed to get in a few more Pathfinder games, before getting sucked into the Old School Renaissance by said old "I hate 3.5" DM. I actually had a LOT of fun playing old school style D&D.
After leaving graduate school, I landed an amazing 6 month internship with Wired Magazine, my absolute dream job. After those 6 months... I couldn't hold down a steady job at all. A combination of dreadful family tragedy with health problems meant that I just couldn't deal with the pressures of the workplace. After my most recent disaster with trying to be A Good Office Worker, the very same "I don't like 3.5" DM suggested that I try to apply for the Paizo Developer position (he's since softened his views. he still doesn't like d20 games, but he respects the OGL and the system for what it is. Also, he loves 5th edition, so there you are).
I did, and... I failed! But Wes Schneider was kind enough to say that he felt I had talent and he hoped I stuck around. He sent me a few leads on freelance work. He suggested I go for RPG Superstar.
So... I went ahead and tried. Like I said, I haven't played Pathfinder in two years, and even when I did play it, it wasn't for very long. But as I said in other threads, the whole key to being a prolific freelancer is quickly adapting to rules you DON'T know... so I went for it anyway. I didn't expect to make it past cull--I knew I'd screwed up my formatting & certain other aspects of my item. I CERTAINLY didn't expect to be an Alternate. Yet here I am, typing to avoid the terror of reading through Pathfinder books to try to figure out what on earth I'm going to map.
I've been slowly picking up some freelance gigs in the meantime. I most recently re-did the layout of Adventure-A-Week's A08: The Search for the Tri-Stone. The new edition of A09: Rogue Wizard should be coming out... soon (some issues with the printer occurred). In terms of my OSR work, I edited Deep Carbon Observatory (though ugh, the original authors kinda un-did a bunch of my edits, and somehow misspelled my name in the final product x_X) and Under the Waterless Sea. Currently, I'm hoping to become a freelance copyeditor with Paizo (I did hear back from their freelance coordinator re: rates, but not yet on if they have any work for me. Here's hoping!) I might have a few other freelance gigs coming up, and I have some articles for ENWorld in the cooker (hopefully my editor will understand that Because Superstar, I'm going to be late...)
My screenname is TealDeer because I'm excessively long-winded. How could you tell???
TL;DR -- hello i am long-winded freelancer cranky grognard.
Want to hire me? Here are my basic freelance rates:
Copy editing, editing: $0.01 / word, or $1.00 per 100 words
Layout: $5 / page
Writing: $0.05 / word