"Books are the best of things, well used; abused, among the worst."

Ralph Waldo Emerson

2 Days. One Novel. 100s of Writers.

The Digital Writing Makerthon is a unique creative, artistic, multimedia attempt to make a text that is more than a text -- what we're calling a "makertext." Hundreds of collaborators will work together to tell a single story using words, sound, video, hyperlinks, code, tweets, and more, in just 48 hours.

We begin Friday, November 15 at 11:59pm EST and end November 17 at 11:59pm EST. Visit World Time Buddy to find out what time we'll be working in your time zone. Join the discussion on Twitter with #readmake. Follow @Jessifer and @slamteacher, read the rallying cry, and help spread the word.


Digital Writing Makerthon Formula

Concept: A text-image-sound hypertext novel written in 48 hours by multiple authors. More than a simple text novel, this makertext will include all forms of digital media: text, video, audio, animation, graphics, tweets, computer code, etc. As well, the novel will exist in multiple places at once. While the narrative will be primarily housed in one document, writers may choose to use hyperlinks within that document to lead readers willy-nilly across the landscape of the Internet.

Process: During a Twitter chat on November 14, participants contributed to the construction of these guidelines.

  • Authors will be encouraged to include a short bio in the document.
  • Once inside the document, writers may choose any chapter to work within. All chapters will be co-authored by multiple people. We will literally be writing within each other's sentences, so don't be shy about jumping in where someone else has written, or is writing.
  • Crowdsourced titles for all chapters were taken from lines in famous and not-so-famous works
  • The chapter titles are meant as inspirations, as launching points for the chapter. Use them to aid your investigation in any way you see fit.

Prompt: The novel we construct will be driven by a basic premise -- not a plot, but a prompt. How that premise changes and evolves during the writing will depend on the contributions and their effect on the overall narrative.

  • The author is dead. Print is dead. "Storytelling has changed. Stories are no longer told to audiences, but by audiences." And now the very notion of the story is threatened.
  • You are part of a crack team of storytellers, educators, students, and concerned citizens sent online to investigate the death of narrative. For this mission, you'll need all the resources of the Internet at the ready... and cooperation from every corner of literature itself.
  • Your job will be to write, film, record, and otherwise digitally construct a story about story itself -- weaving your way through literary worlds and digital landscapes to write an account of the precarious health of narrative. It will also be up to you to resurrect the names, voices, and words of the greatest -- and the most underrepresented -- characters from literature, poetry, drama, television, movies, the Internet and more.
  • We intend this to be a truly global writing experiment. Therefore, all languages are welcome in the text, any form of narrative is welcome, and any and all hyperlinks should link to open (not paywalled or password-protected) sites.

Preliminary Rules: The rules will evolve as necessary throughout the event.

  • On copyediting: start with creativity and whittle to quality. Large scale deletions are not encouraged. Character voice is sacred.
  • Authors are characters, in league with any existing literary characters of their choice.
  • If you can link to it or take a picture of it, you can include it as part of the text.
  • Remix at will.

Contribute to the Makertext

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