Esports is one of the most laborious industries in terms of weekly hours. From building yourself up through extensive branding and marketing, to taking the time to thoroughly research history and keep up with current events, to vod review, to compile and organize notes: esports is a field that becomes your life, even when you “make it.” Becoming full time in esports does mean finally getting a breather: it means devoting nearly every waking hour to the scene. At least, if you want to put the work in to become one of the best at whatever part of the industry you work in.
The professional player’s schedule is daunting: at least 10 hours per day of constant practice (not play) to keep one’s skills sharp, with only a few hours or for food breaks. In some cultures, particularly Korea, it’s expected to go beyond the requirements and do more. Samsung’s mid laner, Lee “Crown” Min-ho, sacrificed vacation time in order to practice. That practice meant the difference between Samsung advancing to worlds over KT Rolster.
Some esports scenes don’t have a high enough salary to allow a player to practice full time. Some in the Smash scene work day jobs in order to save up the money to travel to tournaments, hoping to make returns on the investment. Jason “ANTi” Bates has been open about his work at a bar, using the tip money to supplement any winnings or team salary he is paid. Working some 40 hour weeks while practicing to keep his skills honed enough to defeat the best is a heavy charge.
Then of course, there are the writers, casters, and other content creators of the scene. Researching players or organizations, keeping up with recent performances, and following the communities thoughts to create timely and relevant pieces is a daunting task, especially for a sect that has a large base of freelancers looking to break into a salaried position. Personally, no one has shown more work ethic than Kelsey Moser of The Score. Even through her own birthday (happy birthday, by the way) she constantly creates content, with little to none of it being shilled out. It is well constructed, informed, thought out, and a delight to read. I mean no disrespect to anyone in the industry: she is not the only one who constantly works, and many of the best content creators put in insane hours. She’s just the example I chose.
If you’re looking to work in esports, be prepared to go the extra 15 miles. If you settle for just one, you could be left behind by someone who is willing to work harder than you. If you have to juggle a part-time job with creating esports content, then grit your teeth and work around the clock. It will be brutal, but being able to support yourself while working towards the career you aspire to is going to be worth it in the end.