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Author Topic: Web Fiction Experiment  (Read 1102 times)
Posts: 440

« on: March 29, 2008, 07:32:33 PM »

Penguin seem to be trying to make their role (as stuffy publisher of literary classics) more trendy by commissioning six modern interpretations of said classics... but not just as ordinary stories: as fully intarweb-aware hypertext narratives.

At least that's the impression I get, based on the two that have been released so far.  Week 1, The 21 Steps, is a fairly superficial conspiracy thriller made totally addictive by overlaying the text on a Google Maps trace of the protagonist's journey.  Week 2, Slice, is at first a bit bogged down in creating a convincing hinterland of links and comments for its livejournal and flickr pages, but evolves into quite a creepy blogistolary haunted house tale... and that's my reaction from catching up on it through the archives: I missed the full impact of following it through twitter updates, which seems to have been how it was designed.

There's still the lingering odour of uncle-dancing-at-a-wedding that always seems to follow corporate web promos, particularly because it's such a meticulous attempt to simulate web 2.0 in a determinedly web 1.0 fashion, but even so I've enjoyed 2 out of 2 so far.  So I thought I'd make forum readers aware.

(My favourite bit is buried on the competition page (UK readers have the chance to win 1300 Penguin Classics), where they warn that you need to have space for 25 metres of books.  Never mind the quality, feel the width!  Tomorrow I must measure the length of my bookshelves...)  (My least favourite bit is the site name.  "We Tell Stories"?  Urgh.)
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