A Media Services Business Owner at 21: My 400 Writing Prompts

How time, persistence, and the right mindset and change your entire life.

As I go through my last year at Radford University, I’m starting to think more and more about my future and where I’ll be in a year from now, five years from now, and even 10 years from now.

It’s not an easy question to ask yourself, and nobody truly has a correct answer. But, for now, let’s pretend I do.

I started my “business” back in the summer of 2013, not knowing where I wanted to take it or where it was going to lead me. I was 15 years old!

It honestly took me until about two years ago to start earning money on anything I was doing on the internet, besides the money I was getting from online surveys; however, that’s a story for another time.

I didn’t learn much from my immediate family or the teachers I had in K-12 on freelancing, web design, using social media for businesses, branding, photography, investing, entrepreneurship, or even going to college.

However, as it relates to running a business, my mom was a big factor in that learning experience, running her own antique brick-and-molder store and online shop. Even my aunt and a couple of other relatives run there own businesses which I’ve seen them build up from afar. I don’t blame them at all for it, and maybe I was just too young to realize the information I was given.

Whatever it may be, they did help me build different skills to get where I’m at now and it’s made me stronger in some respects, because nothing has been handed to me but time.

In 2013, I had all the time in the world. I could have chosen to continue to do nothing with my video game hobby and play until my heart’s content. I could have gone into IT and coasted through just like any other video game nerd that finally decided to take up a job. There is nothing wrong with that for the people who choose that path, but I wouldn’t have felt whole.

I started writing, and that was bad.

I started streaming games, and that was bad.

I started photography, and that was bad.

I started making videos, and those were bad.

I started using WordPress, and I was like, “screw this!”

The cliché I am trying to make here is that I kept trying things and never gave up. Soon, with every passing day, I got a little bit better. I started reading books, listing to podcasts, watching YouTubers like CaseyNeistat (before the vlogs) and GaryVee, and reading any blogs or articles I could find on the internet.

Google and I have a great relationship, by the way.

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North Chesterfield, VA 2020 by Dylan Lepore

It was all because of my desire to work in the video game industry, possibly as a journalist working for IGN, GameSpot, Kotaku, or somewhere in that beat.

Since then, my desire has opened up to work at other companies doing more than writing; however, and IGN, GameSpot, and Kotak, if you are reading this, I am not going to say no if a job is presented to me from you guys.

Now, I have moved towards web design, podcasting, making simple videos, some graphic design (mostly layout – I can’t draw), professionally using social media, consulting, marketing, personal finance, and of course, still writing.

Every day I try to create something just like this post here; it adds to my portfolio, but don’t think that’s the reason I’m doing all of this.

I found that I can’t stop. This voice in the back of my head drives me to do more and more and work as much as I can within 24 hours on 6 hours of sleep, which is plenty.

I do crash. And I know when I crash.

The first step is acknowledgment, right.

So, my business, The Part-Time Gamer, could be that position I hold on to and be in a year or 10 from now. I am beginning to garner more and more clients looking for copy and web design services. It’s great, and it feels great.

The only reason I managed to start this business is that I live with my mom rent-free, don’t have car payments (or a car), or anything yet but tuition. That’s the truth, and I realized the opportunity of time I was given.

It’s fortunate for me because I can’t see a 45-year-old man working a low wage job trying to start a business, that he can live off of, making no profits or revenue for four whole years living by himself unless he sacrifices everything. That would be scary, but some people do that!

As the beginning of the rest of my life starts in about 10 months, I’ll continue the grind and the hustle to personal and financial freedom in whatever I end up doing or becoming. Still, there is only so much time for work, video games, and sleep.

Thanks for reading – Dylan Lepore, The Part-TIme Gamer.

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Downtown, Richmond, VA 2019 by Dylan Lepore

*If you were to start a new business right this minute, what would it be? Describe it. 9/400*

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