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Moving to California and Starting a New Job

by Tom Johnson on Feb 15, 2013 •
categories: technical-writing

Big changes are in store for our family. We're moving from Utah to California, and I'm starting a new job in Redwood City (which is in the San Francisco Bay area) at a company called Badgeville.

Badgeville is one of the leading companies in gamification, which is the practice of incorporating game dynamics and techniques into non-game settings to influence user behavior.

Our New Adventure

I'm really excited about the new adventures and opportunities ahead. Next Friday we'll be loading up a moving truck and rolling out west towards the Pacific Ocean (crossing through the deserts of Nevada). I'll be driving a 16-foot moving truck with a car trailer on back through the urban streets of California.

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I had a good experience working for the LDS Church during the past five years. Mainly, I loved the freedom and flexibility to do virtually anything I wanted. That freedom fit well with my innovative, creative mindset. I was able to write and explore topics freely on my blog, and try out new ideas. Badgeville will no doubt invite new challenges and topics to write about, new territory to explore.

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I'm also excited to move to the San Francisco Bay area. I've been wanting to transition out there for the past two years, and now seemed like the perfect opportunity. The market for technical writers seems pretty strong there. I had a positive reaction at just about every place I interviewed.

I'm planning to move to San Jose and ride the Caltrain north to Redwood City. If you're a local to the area and have tips you want to share, let me know. Since I have a wife and four young daughters, I'm looking for a family-friendly neighborhood.

While looking for a job, I realized a lot of things, which I'll no doubt elaborate on in an upcoming post. If there's one key point, it's this: your connections are your greatest asset in a job search. But by connections, I don't mean vague names on Linkedin that you don't actually know. I mean people you interact with online or in person.

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About Tom Johnson

Tom Johnson

I'm a technical writer / API doc specialist based in the Seattle area. In this blog, I write about topics related to technical writing and communication — such as software documentation, API documentation, visual communication, information architecture, writing techniques, plain language, tech comm careers, and more. Check out simplifying complexity and API documentation for some deep dives into these topics. If you're a technical writer and want to keep on top of the latest trends in the field, be sure to subscribe to email updates. You can also learn more about me or contact me.