Alt.Storytelling Archive

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This is the Alt.storytelling Archive.

the page from the previous class page can be found here.


Let's see, we talked about focusing on these alternative storytelling media:

  • Hyperfiction
  • Collaborative fiction
  • DIY video
  • Machinima (and I'm adding mash-ups)


  • The Unbinding. The book began as a serial novel published on Slate that featured hyperlinks to a wide range of Wikipedia pages, YouTube clips, online news reports and blogs.

Collaborative Fiction

  • A Million Penguins. A collaborative, wiki-based creative writing exercise, sponsored by Penguin Books and De Montfort University.

DIY Video

  • Videos will be turned in as youtube posts.
    • Create a youtube account for the class.
  • DIY tech. Very little prepared technical lecture; just questions answered.
  • We should get the lonelygirl15 guys to come to Bennington.
  • And I think Jonathan Caouette (Tarnation) would come.
  • Indie Sitcoms article from the NY Times Magazine: Thom Woodley, a creator of “The Burg,” notes that the Internet, unlike TV, also offers opportunities for interactivity. (One “Burg” short, for instance, consisted entirely of cast members reading a very long viewer comment.) He adds that the speed at which he can produce and show an episode outpaces the networks. “If a news story comes out on Monday,” he says, “we can have it written that day and up on the site later that week.”
  • Also thinking of my friends at Olde English, who's short film One Picture Every Day was recently featured on YouTube and national TV. Also they make people laugh for a living. Maybe they can come to Bennington and talk and make us laugh.
  • Entertainment Weekly 2006 year-end article about YouTube.

We really need to get the skills down quickly about how to capture and repurpose video. For example, taking a DVD and extracting clips from it and using the clips in Final Cut or iMovie. Or clips from a tape or from an existing online video. Especially video from a video game for machinima. Larry Lessig showed an anime music video to the Muppets song Manamana featuring anime tough guys staring at the camera and lip-syncing to the "manamanas". Gimmicky and easy. Perhaps this would be a good first assignment for video work -- searching for appropriate clips (not nec. anime, but genre of the student's choice), extracting them and importing them into iMovie, syncing them to a simple audio track.


Mashed up trailers

Take clips from a well-known movie and repurpose them into a completely different genre.

  • Shining The original. The feel good movie of the year. Great.
  • Scary Mary A new one that turns Mary Poppins into a horror film.
  • The Sandlot 300 The Sandlot meets 300.

Mashed up shorts

Plays / Theater / Movies

  • The Last Five Years - a musical with two people, told both forward and backward. The man starts at the end, the woman starts at the beginning of the relationship. The middle (end of Act I) is a single song that moves through both timelines, with their wedding in the middle.
  • Every heist movie ever made has the purposeful withholding of information with a timeline change that reveals it after the fact.


Hey, Rebecca Grabman here. Just stumbled over from the Recent Changes page. Sounds like an awesome basis for a class. Thumbs-up.

Remembered one of the "big stir" stories that made the rounds a few years ago -- Dionaea House. I later heard that it was some teaser for a movie, but it was a nicely constructed unfolding of "official" information with links to blogs that tied in other POVs and experiances.

(Also, don't know if this is in the direction you're heading with the class, but the subject matter made me think of the crazy-huge LJ storytelling/RPing/socializing comms that have become so popular, like Milliways_Bar and the Middle-Earth Sock-Puppet Theatre)

Moondog 19:37, 20 March 2007 (EDT): Was thinking about some non-tech variations of storytelling, and thought I should mention them here.

  • Language alteration(Clockword Orange, Everything is Illuminated)
  • Unusual/Problematic Storyteller (Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time, Sock - which also goes w/ the above, as every paragraph ends with a song lyric)
  • Altering time flow (Memento)
  • Using specific non-story structres (recipes, definitions, scientific formulae)
  • Making changes to world structure w/o changing story structure (in the movie Palindrome, the main character is played by multiple, physically different actors)

Griff Maloney also reading this. Likewise found the page through the recent changes. I'm very interested in the idea. I've included some links to some interesting projects/ideas. A couple of other things that might be worth a look are the use of Podcasts for traditional storytellers, I'm pretty sure there are a few of those. Also user generated content in MMOGs. Warren Ellis has been trying to develop a serial distribution system in Second Life. Emergent storytelling in MMORPG's might also be interesting to investigate.

Links: 365 Tomorrows: An updating inventive/speculative fiction blog. A fascinating idea for the delivery of finished work. Short fiction everyday using a connected theme and a team of authors.

The Center for Digital Storytelling: A California non-profit that gives training in digital media so that individuals can tell their own stories.

The Interactive Fiction Archive: An archive of Text Adventures. Some really amazing ones in here and a number of classics.

Shelly Jackson's Ineradicable Stain: Shelly Jackson has an innovative mind. Her Skin project is an amazing example of unique story delivery. She would also be a person to ask for a visit. She lives in NYC so it's not unreasonable to ask her.

Ghyll Another interesting hybrid. Ghyll is a Wiki game in which you play the role of a scholar writing a fictional description of a world. Certain restrictions apply.

I hope some of those links are helpful to other people reading this page. The idea sounds fascinating and I think it would make a remarkable class. Keep us updated!

A friend of a friend made "Strain Andromeda The," in which, quoth Wikipedia, "The film* was recast as an art-house movie in Anne McGuire's 1992 "Strain Andromeda The". With permission, McGuire reversed the original film shot by shot so that everything unfolded in reverse order, although with each scene running in normal time with comprehensible dialogue. "Every action is followed by its stimulus, every comment by its query, you find yourself in a dizzying spin, grasping desperately for causal certainty, yet firmly held by the reversibility of suspense."

Might be something worth checking out, though I've never seen it.

The Andromeda Strain, if you didn't know. --Jmedeiros 12:04, 1 April 2007 (EDT)

Joe here thanking you both for your comments!