During my spring 2014 semester, I took a class called Electronic Literature where I was exposed to a wide variety of literature that can only be interacted with using an electronic device such as a computer. One of the assignments in the class was to create our own piece of electronic literature. I chose to turn a prose poem that I had written into a hypertext poem using an application called Twine.
The creative process, which included an in-class peer revision, taught me that the reader’s experience with a hypertext poem is not the same as reading a poem in print. There is no clear ending, but merely the place where the reader chooses to stop reading. The navigation is much more circular and each reader’s experience differs as it is dependent on the order in which they read each part. The appearance plays a larger role as font, color, images, and animation are all possible additions to the poem’s presentation on the screen.
Taking all those elements into consideration, I tried to create a poem whose navigation and appearance aid the words and create an immersive experience.
You can read my original hypertext poem, “Open & Honest & Weird” here.