Content Warning: Discussion of serious illness, including cancer and alcoholism.
You know, there are plenty of writers and media folks out there that I idolize. But one of the guys I look up to most is a guy named Blake Hester, a writer most seen on Polygon, but also a former intern at Game Informer, just like me. I’ve always been captivated by his features writing, where he’s explored the history of Red Dead, Crash Bandicoot, Sonic the Hedgehog, and interviewing Geoff friggin’ Keighley for six months about the Game Awards. Jesus. But I really admire him as a person with a lot of strength and, well, chill, and even more so after this conversation. About 32 weeks ago, Blake announced that he had cancer. His treatment happened, I happened to hang out with him for an afternoon in San Francisco in October 2018, and then a few months after that he checked himself into rehab for his alcoholism, where halfway through he was informed that on top of all that, his cancer had come back. On this week’s episode, we discuss his journey through treatment, recognizing his illness, and how he’s kept pushing forward with his work despite the weight of it all, and if you know anything about Blake Hester, let me assure you it’s a VERY Blake kind of discussion, haha. I think a lot of people, whether they’ve worked in art or technology or any mix of the two know what it’s like to precariously balance your health, your happiness, and your career, especially if life throws you a curveball...or three. Like any episode of The 1099, it’s my hope that you get something meaningful out of this, but this episode maybe more than any other I’ve recorded so far. If you struggle with illness and its effects on your life or career in any way, please know that you’re not alone, and that there are resources that can help you, some of which I’ve linked to in the show description on Soundcloud. Of course, if discussion of these sensitive topics might cause you emotional or mental distress, exercise caution. You fans of The 1099 are slowly becoming more and more like family to me, and the last thing we need is for you to be in a worse place. So yeah, as always, thank you for listening, and thank you for all the kind words you folks have sent the past few weeks. It’s kept me going too.
Alcoholics Anonymous: https://www.aa.org/
Follow Blake on Twitter @metallicaisrad
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