A post on web narrative to follow, I promise, but before hand, it’s worth pointing people to an excellent summary of work done by a couple of graduate students (with my assistance/hinderance) here – especially worth reading is the report, linked to at the bottom of the page. I’d urge anyone interested in this area to have a look, as it summaries the current lay of the land, the opportunities and risks involved, including some practical experiments, in great clarity and detail.
Meanwhile, before I finally get myself together to write a coherent piece on web narrative, prepare yourselves by reading two posts I’ll be referencing and responding to:
Dan Biddle – ‘Hyperlinks don’t split narrative, they streamline it’
In a comment on the former, the author of the latter sums things up in a position I think I would agree represents my position:
“I would never try to disown the linear narrative, but I don’t hold that the link is its undoing.”
Although, I’d also argue that hyperlinks offer the opportunity not only to streamline narrative, but to open up a whole new toy box of tricks for both authors and audience to play with – and certainly not at the expense of ‘traditional’ linear storytelling. Not every Web narrative has to be branching, after all…