ELC/2 Launch: December 13th @ The Kitchen

Next Tuesday, the Electronic Literature Organization will be launching the Electronic Literature Collection, volume 2 at The Kitchen.

512 West 19th Street /New York, NY 10011 / (212) 255-5793

ELC/2 includes 63 works in 6 languages from 16 countries. An astounding variety of forms and genres are included: text movies, interactive fiction, poem generators, codework, animations, Second Life excursions, chatbot drama, augmented reality, and games—to name a few. There are works of poetry, narrative, documentary critique, drama and creative non-fiction for screen, gallery, and virtual environment. The Keyword glossary inside each Collection provides definitions of new forms and software, and each of the works is introduced briefly both by the editors and by the authors.

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#AuthorFail 12: Stephanie Strickland

Ring the bells, sort of.

Stephanie Strickland is a wonder of compelling poetic investigations. Experiencing her works–try “slippingglimpse” for a quick fix–is only slightly less exciting than having coffee with her.

In either setting, she’ll offer a series of interconnections between things that appear to have no interconnection, so that rising from the table after the event places you thick into edges of a spider web, one that has been woven around your table and one that has now trapped you, sticky and glued, to its gossamer edges.

And so, here, Strickland delights us by doing the opposite of what she normally does. Here, the web is woven, bright and clear, but it catches only itself in its word glue.

Sure, this #Authorfail is three times the length of the guidelines, but if anyone deserves the right to fail for so long, it’s Strickland.

See you next week, and the weeks of this column are rapidly waning.

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Proto-Collaboration with Potential Collaborator:  A Digital Poem In Prospect 

Stephanie:  I want to make a work of e-lit based on the mathematics of jingling (bell change-ringing).

Potential Collaborator (Jeremy Douglass):   I’m unclear right now on whether you are interested in authoring a specific work of e-literature based on the mathematics of change-ringing, or looking to produce a kind of change-ringing media player within which many works might be authored.

Stephanie:  I want to make a specific work of e-lit, but my sense is that programming the system for it would be in some sense equivalent to programming the “machine” or media player for it. I want to explore various kinds of historic “changes,” to see which would really work as a literary project. That’s not something I can know ahead of time without playing with it first. I find it is not so useful to explicitly define a whole project from the top, and so there is always a kind of negotiation going on with the programming, which in the best cases is a kind of back-and-forth. I envision a textual instrument on which many works might be authored and played.

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Over Forty Writers Over Forty to Watch

Writing the title of this post actually felt very silly; it seems such an arbitrary way of gathering a list of writers to look out for. What could be sillier than singling out writers in this way, according to their age? Surely, there are more worthy criteria. Well, there is an answer to what could be sillier than singling out over forty writers over forty to watch, namely, singling twenty writers under forty to watch, especially largely mainstream writers writing, for the most part, conventional and redundant fiction. And the New Yorker has done just that. But this isn’t surprising. Theirs is an idea once again institutionalizing, reinforcing our decayed culture’s obsession with youth, not to mention its eyes wide shut wallowing in mediocrity. So, not only have they missed, for the most part, who are the best fiction writers under forty to watch, but, with their unapologetic valorization of youth, they missed entirely. The following writers (and I include poets, essayists, and theorists among them) are writers who have consistently written great work. I anticipate great things from each of them in the years and years to come. With full awareness of how a corrective sometimes ironically and paradoxically legitimizes what it seeks to correct, here, in the order in which I thought of them, are over forty writers over forty whose work I will be busy watching.

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An Electronic Literature Primer

Stephanie StricklandIn “Born Digital,” poet Stephanie Strickland, a “poet in the forefront of the field explores what is—and is not—electronic literature.”

When you’re there, be sure to check out the links to all sorts of incredible projects like Brian Kim Stefans’s “The Dreamlife of Letters.”