I’m Leaving Insomniac… Sort of

Posted: July 22, 2013 in Uncategorized

Written 7/17/2013

It’s 4:43 AM and I can’t sleep. It’s a mixture of fear and excitement and now, since I’ve accepted my fate, a cup of French Vanilla coffee. I haven’t felt this way in seven years, so I guess it’s only fitting I bookend this chapter of my life with insomnia. Anyway, by now you’ve read the title of this blog so let’s get to it: 

After seven years and nine games, I’m leaving Insomniac. 

At one time, a few years back, I told myself I was a video game lifer. There was no future I could see in which I would not be an Insomniac. This is a studio that allowed me to break the space-time continuum and ravage post-apocalyptic Chicago. It allowed me to write for Captain Qwark and record dirty pirate songs. It sent me to PAX, where a fan ran up to me quoting Orvus because his cheesy jokes made her smile during a dark time in her life. These are the kinds of moments that stay with you forever and make you grateful for every second of it—even the rough times during crunch when it’s midnight and you still have 50 bugs in Devtrack. For all of those experiences, I’ll be eternally grateful.

When I came to Insomniac, I was a newbie in Los Angeles who had never worked as an in-house writer before. Insomniac taught me about game writing, voice recording, and the video game pipeline. At the same time, I was writing feature scripts on the side (it’s a good way to cleanse the palette when Captain Qwark’s voice is stuck in your head). Finally, just this past year, I had the privilege of jumping into the feature world with One Night on the Hudson and the Ratchet & Clank movie. Despite the rewrite deadlines, story meetings, and note sessions, I told myself I could manage the workload—all while working on two games in simultaneous production on opposite ends of the country (And you wondered why I had all those energy drinks by my desk!).

Recently, I was offered a feature assignment at Disney, at which point thirteen-year-old TJ reached through a time vortex to high-five me and ask why I still wear the same Mighty Mighty Bosstones shirt. I knew at this point I had taken on too much work for any one person, but I was having trouble pulling the trigger. The studio meant a lot to me, and had been my second home ever since I came to LA looking to build a career as a screenwriter.

Then, as if fate had noticed I was having a difficult time leaping, my phone rang again. It was my manager, telling me I’d sold another script to New Line. Two projects, two days. And more projects rolling in. Now I’m tallying up hours in the day and figuring out how I’d be able to get my pages done on time, and it became immediately clear it was time to make the leap.

To be offered the opportunity to craft a story, in any medium, is a privilege.  There is no hierarchy of relevance when it comes to art. Other than the aforementioned scheduling gymnastics, my moving on is about searching for a new challenge. I can look at my time at Insomniac and feel like I’ve done what I set out to do there. As for other mediums, I feel like I’m just getting started. I’m excited by movies and television. I want to get back into graphic novel writing. I want to develop different projects with new characters and stories and worlds I can explore. Right now I have the opportunity to try all of it, and when you’re handed a gift like that, you have to grab onto it with both hands.

So why does the title say “sort of”? Because my relationship with Insomniac and the Ratchet & Clank franchise will continue. As a producer and writer on the movie, I will still be helping to shepherd Ratchet & Clank into the feature world. I’ve also made sure the North Carolina studio has everything they need to finish Ratchet & Clank: Into the Nexus, a truly awesome game I hope you all love. My relationship with Insomniac will continue, as will my involvement with the video game industry. How it will all coalesce is something I’ll work out along the way, but I could never abandon the industry that has given me so much.

For those of you who have supported me as a game writer, I hope you stick around and support me through the next phase of my career. At the risk of sounding cliché, I couldn’t do it without you. Thank you for the supportive tweets, the fan mail, and the encouraging feedback on the forums. It’s rare that writers earn such a loyal following, so know that I don’t take a single one of you for granted.

And with that, I’m off to begin life as a free agent. I’ll post more here as I can, and will stay active on Twitter. Can’t wait to show you what I have cooking up!

Best,

T.J.

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Comments
  1. […] a suitably late night blog post, the writer announced his departure from the developer, where he has served for seven years on nine […]

  2. JEZZMAN55 says:

    Sad to hear, best of luck man

  3. Tim V. says:

    It’s been an awesome ride, TJ. You’ve brought so much to Ratchet & Clank to help it grow and add so much depth to the characters and worlds. My favourite of your works is A Crack in Time, although I highly anticipate the movie to surpass it! Best of luck out there!

  4. stephan says:

    WELL THATS SCREWED!!!!!
    (with ratchets wrench )

  5. […] Welchen Aufgaben sich Fixman künftig widmet, ist noch unklar. Derzeit genießt er laut eigenen Angaben die Freiheit, sich in jedem Bereich kreativ ausleben zu können. Das komplette Statement Fixmans lest ihr hier. […]

  6. […] & Clank, Resistance 2 и Overstrike (которая впоследствии стала FUSE) написал в своем блоге, что покидает Insomniac. В то же время он продолжит работу […]

  7. […] T.J. Fixman, writer of Ratchet & Clank current-gen series is leaving Insomniac to embrace a screenwriting career, he announced on his blog. […]

  8. […] a blog post Fixman said he was leaving the company to focus on mediums other than […]

  9. […] from Insomniac Games yesterday, saying he wanted to focus on mediums other than gaming. In a blog post, long-serving Ratchet and Clank writer Fixman said his “relationship” with Insomniac […]

  10. […] from Insomniac Games yesterday, saying he wanted to focus on mediums other than gaming. In a blog post, long-serving Ratchet and Clank writer Fixman said his "relationship" with Insomniac will continue, […]

  11. […] from Insomniac Games yesterday, saying he wanted to focus on mediums other than gaming. In a blog post, long-serving Ratchet and Clank writer Fixman said his "relationship" with Insomniac will continue, […]

  12. […] from Insomniac Games yesterday, saying he wanted to focus on mediums other than gaming. In a blog post, long-serving Ratchet View […]

  13. […] from Insomniac Games yesterday, saying he wanted to focus on mediums other than gaming. In a blog post, long-serving Ratchet and Clank writer Fixman said his “relationship” with Insomniac […]

  14. […] Writer TJ Fixman will be leaving developer Insomniac Games, as announced recently via a blog post. […]

  15. […] last nine Ratchet and Clank games, has departed from Insomniac Games. According to a post on his personal blog, he’s left to pursue opportunities in other […]

  16. […] Interesting news emerged today from Insomniac Games, the studio that brought you the likes of Spyro the Dragon, Ratchet & Clank, and Resistance: the developer’s long-time writer, TJ Fixman, has left the studio. […]

  17. […] Interesting news emerged today from Insomniac Games, the studio that brought you the likes of Spyro the Dragon, Ratchet & Clank, and Resistance: the developer’s long-time writer, TJ Fixman, has left the studio. […]

  18. […] writer T.J. Fixman has left the Ratchet & Clank studio to pursue a career in screenwriting, he announced through his blog […]

  19. […] Writer TJ Fixman will be leaving developer Insomniac Games, as announced recently via a blog post. […]

  20. […] writer T.J. Fixman has left the Ratchet & Clank studio to pursue a career in screenwriting, he announced through his blog […]

  21. […] Interesting news emerged today from Insomniac Games, the studio that brought you the likes of Spyro the Dragon, Ratchet & Clank, and Resistance: the developer’s long-time writer, TJ Fixman, has left the studio. […]

  22. […] Interesting news emerged today from Insomniac Games, the studio that brought you the likes of Spyro the Dragon, Ratchet & Clank, and Resistance: the developer’s long-time writer, TJ Fixman, has left the studio. […]

  23. […] Interesting news emerged today from Insomniac Games, the studio that brought you the likes of Spyro the Dragon, Ratchet & Clank, and Resistance: the developer’s long-time writer, TJ Fixman, has left the studio. […]

  24. […] last nine Ratchet and Clank games, has departed from Insomniac Games. According to a post on his personal blog, he’s left to pursue opportunities in other […]

  25. […] last nine Ratchet and Clank videogames, has departed from Insomniac Games. citing to a post on his personal blog, he’s left to pursue opportunities in other […]

  26. […] last nine Ratchet and Clank games, has departed from Insomniac Games. According to a post on his personal blog, he’s left to pursue opportunities in other […]

  27. […] writer T.J. Fixman has left the Ratchet & Clank studio to pursue a career in screenwriting, he announced through his blog […]

  28. Captain Qwark was hilarious in “A crack in time” He was the sole reason I got into the Ratchet and Clank series. Great game. Can’t wait to see the movie! Best of luck

  29. […] time Ratchet & Clank writer TJ Fixman has revealed on his blog (via VG247) that he is leaving Insomniac Games after seven years and nine games at the […]

  30. […] last nine Ratchet and Clank games, has departed from Insomniac Games. According to a post on his personal blog, he’s left to pursue opportunities in other […]

  31. I loved the work you did on Ratchet and Clank Future and appreciate the quality you gave. I wish you all the best in your future endeavors and hope you find just as much, if not more success and happiness. Will be looking out for your future work and showing the stuff you already did to my kids one day!

    All the best

    - A Ratchet & Clank Fan.

  32. […] writer T.J. Fixman has left the Ratchet & Clank studio to pursue a career in screenwriting, he announced through his blog […]

  33. […] dropped on his blog, detailing the stress and workload he found himself […]

  34. […] writer T.J. Fixman has left the Ratchet & Clank studio to pursue a career in screenwriting, he announced through his blog […]

  35. […] last nine Ratchet and Clank games, has departed from Insomniac Games. According to a post on his personal blog, he’s left to pursue opportunities in other […]

  36. […] writer T.J. Fixman has left the Ratchet & Clank studio to pursue a career in screenwriting, he announced through his blog […]

  37. […] Interesting news emerged today from Insomniac Games, the studio that brought you the likes of Spyro the Dragon, Ratchet & Clank, and Resistance: the developer’s long-time writer, TJ Fixman, has left the studio. […]

  38. […] last nine Ratchet and Clank games, has departed from Insomniac Games. According to a post on his personal blog, he’s left to pursue opportunities in other […]

  39. […] from Insomniac Games yesterday, saying he wanted to focus on mediums other than gaming. In a blog post, long-serving Ratchet and Clank writer Fixman said his “relationship” with Insomniac […]

  40. Vladimir says:

    Congratulations! I can’t wait to see your future work.

  41. […] a heartfelt blog post released earlier today TJ Fixman, a hugely influential writer at Insomniac Games, announced that he […]

  42. […] i lidi sicuri di Insomniac Games. Una decisione certo non facile, come lui stesso ammette in un lungo post sul suo blog, ma ovviamente il tempo passa per tutti e le opportunità di rimettersi in gioco non […]

  43. […] from Insomniac Games yesterday, saying he wanted to focus on mediums other than gaming. In a blog post, long-serving Ratchet and Clank writer Fixman said his “relationship” with Insomniac […]

  44. […] escritor das histórias de Ratchet & Clank, TJ Fixman, anunciou na sua página que irá abandonar a Insomniac Games, o estúdio com o qual já colaborou em sete videojogos da […]

  45. […] Writer TJ Fixman will be leaving developer Insomniac Games, as announced recently via a blog post. […]

  46. Cliffton Cordero says:

    Hey T.J congratulations on the offer with Disney. Also your a good writer I just found this out today that you where leaving insomniac…sort of lol. It kind of made me sad because rachet & clank is such a fantastic game & it’s story’s. I haven’t got to play every singal one. I just got ratchet & clank collection. well those were the three main games that started it all for me everything about it is entertaining. I will continue to collecting every singal game as a fan of how much I appreciated your writing. I hope you succeed in what you are trying to find & hope too See more I will be following keep up the good work.
    good luck!

  47. […] a blog post, Fixman said he was leaving the company to focus on mediums other than […]

  48. You can definitely see your enthusiasm within the article you write.
    The arena hopes for more passionate writers such as you who aren’t afraid to say how they believe. Always go after your heart.

  49. […] a recent blog post, Fixman stated that, “I’m leaving Insomniac… sort of. My relationship with […]

  50. Johna9 says:

    I just like the helpful information you provide on your articles. I will bookmark your blog and test once more here frequently. I’m moderately certain I will learn many new stuff right here! Best of luck for the next! dbgecababadb

  51. Johng462 says:

    Your goal is to breed all the different dragons available to you and enter combat against other player’s dragons. ebbkeekkdaba

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