Creative Project

The second major assignment for this course asks you to experiment creatively with one of the electronic literature platforms we’ve encountered over the previous few weeks. This may include software such as Inform 7, Undum, HypeDyn, Game Maker, Scratch, Twine, and more. Select the platform you are most comfortable with or interested in, and produce a short creative work to share with your colleagues in this class. Your goal is to become fluent in the affordances and poetics of at least one of the major forms of e-lit by getting to know some of the software used to produce it.

Accordingly, please note: although I will introduce as many platforms as I can in class, and I will also provide links to relevant tutorials and documentation, I am really counting on you to make your own discoveries and interventions. In other words, be prepared to direct your own learning process. Therefore, I do expect that the work you produce will demonstrate some elements that go further tehnically than what I demonstrate in class. Most of the software listed above is quite accessible novice users and non-programmers, so I expect that each of you should be able to achieve this with appropriate effort, regardless of your prior experience in programming. We will include at least one workshop day of class, and while I am not your tech support, I am usually happy to help (if I can) when you run into technical problems with software.

While it is difficult to find a common denominator for defining the scope of a creative work, particularly when that work can vary dramatically in terms of its presentation and structure, my expectation for this creative project is that it comprises an effort similar to that required to produce a 3 – 4-page paper (~1000 words). Generally speaking, that means a work of interactive fiction of that scope should also include about 1000 words of text, including descriptive text and source code. Likewise, a hypertext should include around 1000 words. A more visual interactive work such as that produced by Scratch or Game Maker should involve a complete and coherent experience lasting at least 5 minutes. Other forms may have their own considerations with regard to their scope, so if you are unsure whether your project is of appropriate length, size or duration, please feel free to ask.

Finally, your work must be available online, somewhere. The class blog is a logical place to do this. If you create an interactive fiction, for example, you can upload the compiled game file. Even better, compile it to the z5 format, and use Parchment to embed it in a blog page or post.

Read the official assignment description and/or submit your work through Canvas.

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