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February 18, 2006


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Andy Havens

Two very different media; "Novel by Blog" and "Web 2.0 Storytelling." I've been playing with both, and they leverage the strengths of the Web in very different ways.

I hosted a semi-private blog more than a year ago to post chapters of a novel I was working on and solicit comments and editorial help from a group of more than a dozen friends. It stalled (my fault entirely, not theirs), and I'm thinking of trying again, in a more public fashion, because -- again, because of my mental state -- having more readers might make me feel more guilty about not getting the thing done. Also, more readers = more ideas, and that can't be bad.

"Novel by Blog" is a great way to get comments and edits without getting "marks" in the original text, and to start conversations between readers/editors, and to compare editorial viewpoints and critiques. Frankly -- I loved it. As a writer, it was like "Extreme Writing Buddy." Which some writing mavens think is a bad idea, but I enjoyed. If I do go forward posting the bits again, I'll probably do it at www.lit.org under my username there, andyhavens, if anyone had any interest. The name of that novel is "The Sideways."

"Web 2.0 Storytelling," on the other hand, seems more like utilizing the interactive options of the Web for more collaborative writing projects. I've engaged, for example, in roleplaying by email for years, and recently thought that using a blog or wiki or other CMS would be a great improvement, from a logistics standpoint, on that tech. I'm working with some buddies right now on putting together a site to host text-based, collaborative roleplaying stories; multiple authors, multiple games, multiple worlds, etc. We'll see how that goes.

Indeed a rich topic.


Dionaea House dates from 2004, and combines archived emails, blog entries, copied-and-pasted text messages, chat logs, and I forget what all else. I don't know if it was ever finished.

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