Anna Prosser Robinson's lifetime of video gaming leads to eSports career
by Patrick Scott Patterson
Originally published July 29, 2013
"Never try to pretend to be something other than you are. The key is to say 'This is what I can offer, this is who I am, and this is why I'm here."
This quote decorates the front page of the official website for Anna Prosser Robinson. A note following the quote speaks of how the San Francisco resident and Portland native wears many hats, the former Miss Oregon USA to an eSports Media Personality. Among those hats since her early years was that of a video gamer.
"My dad led the way for me into nerddom. He built us a home PC and installed DOS games for us to play before anyone else on the block had a home computer," she recalled. "The first games I remember really getting into back then were Captain Comic and Commander Keen. I played them both on one of those old school computer chairs with knee pads that rocked back and forth. When we became a two-PC household, my dad networked our computer upstairs to one in the basement, and my little brother and I whooped and hollered at each other through the floors while we played Warcraft II."
Robinson's father was not the only family member that brought video gaming into her life.
"On the console side of things, my grandmother furthered my love for games by pulling her Intellivision console out of the closet whenever I came over to visit and playing Lock 'n' Chase, Major League Baseball, and Night Stalker with me for hours. Legend had it that, before I was born, she used to play into the wee hours of the morning when everyone else was sleeping. She's the coolest gamer chick I know. She now plays for a champion Wii bowling team."
Robinson went on to graduate Magna Cum Laude in Speech Communication from Oregon State University. Eventually, her education, stage experience and love for video gaming would merge into her hosting a variety of eSports events. She states that breaking into that line of work also requires more than an extensive resume.
"One of the most important skills you can have is impromptu speaking, so having a degree in Speech Communication as well as having been a collegiate speech team competitor definitely helped me hone my abilities," she said. "However, I think that landing a role in eSports media had a lot more with being willing to take risks, believing in the value of my own work, and, honestly, working for very little if any compensation for a while. I started with making videos at events and gifting them to teams, or agreeing to work as on-camera talent in exchange for travel and accommodations. Once I had the chance to show my stuff, more and more opportunities started presenting themselves."
When asked for career advice by aspiring video game personalities, Robinson suggests a targeted approach.
"It boils down to this: Figure out what you are really good at, and then get even better at it," she added. "Find a place where your particular skills in the industry are truly needed. Present your absolute best product to the public and to people who matter in the industry, and then promote and network the heck out of it until people believe you."
In addition to duties in the public eye, Anna is also currently involved in a variety of other more behind-the-scenes projects.
"People are sometimes surprised to find that I'm so heavily involved in eSports on the professional side as well. I also work for Team Evil Geniuses full time doing creative media production, PR, operations management, and whatever else we need done at the time. We just moved to San Francisco where we have our first non-virtual office. I love it here. Previously, I lived in the Evil Geniuses team training facility 'The EG Lair' with 8-12 StarCraft players at a time in Phoenix, Arizona. That was a very unique experience, for sure."
Robinson also previously released a Starcraft 2 parody song in collaboration with Underline Entertainment that is nearing 1 million views. She recently recorded and filmed another music video she says she is looking forward to sharing as a follow up.
More on Robinson's extensive career experiences and background can be found on her official website at AnnaProsser.com.