Mapping the transition from page to screen

Mapping the Transition from Page to Screen

Online Seminar: Sunday, 15th December 2002

Time: 1 pm Los Angeles : 4 pm New York : 9 pm London : 10 pm Rome : 8 am (Monday) Sydney

Place: trAce Forum Chat

Kate Pullinger chairs an online seminar with Deena Larsen, Rita Raley and Rob Wittig to discuss the following questions:

  • Can we identify common key moments of change for writers moving to writing online?
  • Is it possible to identify common key skills which must be acquired for this to occur and what kind of support is required to facilitate it?
  • Are the opportunities for collaboration provided by the web causing a significant move away from the single-authored text?
  • How can writers using the medium as distributive and communicative tool be brought to work with writers and artists using it as new form of artistic expression?

Kate Pullinger's introduction and pre-seminar statements by the speakers
Dedicated discussion area

The seminar will take place in the trAce Forum Chatroom. The conversation will be logged and the log added to this page in due course. If you are new to chatting we recommend you try accessing the chatroom before the event. Please contact Helen Whitehead if you require further assistance.

Deena Larsen has been fascinated by computers since they were tape drives attached to tv sets. She has explored the possibilities in an 1992 MA thesis (hypertexts and hyperpossibilities), several works from Eastgate, and a panoply of works on the web. She works as a technical writer for the U.S. government, cohosts trAce/ELO chats, sets up hypertext and new media workshops, and hikes in her spare time.

Rita Raley is Assistant Professor of English at the University of California, Santa Barbara, where she teaches courses in the digital humanities and global literary studies. She is currently working on a book about digital textuality and has published relevant articles in Postmodern Culture, Electronic Book Review, and Leonardo Electronic Almanac. She presented a paper on the practice of codework at Incubation 2002. In 2002-2003, she is co-director of the undergraduate Literature and Culture of Information specialization at UCSB.

Rob Wittig is an electronic author. His background includes a 1987 Fulbright Scholarship to Paris to study technical, artistic, and theoretical aspects of creating visual/verbal literary works with online publishing technologies, on the invitation of Jacques Derrida, Jean-Francois Lyotard, and the Centre Georges Pompidou. In the early 1980s Rob co-founded IN.S.OMNIA, an literary electronic bulletin board system deemed 'legendary' by cyber-chronicler Howard Rheingold. Rob's book, "Invisible Rendezvous, Connection and Collaboration in the New Landscape of Electronic Writing", Wesleyan University Press, 1994, is an analysis of these spirited projects. Rob now directs TANK20_language_arts, an electronic literature publisher, and teaches in both literature and graphic design programs.

Kate Pullinger has been working as a print-based writer since 1988. Her books include the novels The Last Time I Saw Jane, Where Does Kissing End?, and, most recently, Weird Sister, as well as the short story collection, My Life as a Girl in a Men's Prison. She co-wrote the novel of the film 'The Piano' with director Jane Campion. Kate Pullinger also writes for film and television; her feature-length screenplay 'Lily' is currently in development with Box TV. She has lectured and taught widely. In 1995/96 she was Judith E Wilson Visiting Fellow at Jesus College, Cambridge; she currently teaches at Birkbeck College, is an advisor for the University of Middlesex Creative Writing MA, and is visiting Writing Fellow at The Women's Library, London Metropolitan University. She is a Research Fellow at trAce, looking at forms of online narrative and new media writing.

Mapping the Transition from Page to Screen
This seminar is part of the project Mapping the Transition from Page to Screen, funded by the UK Arts and Humanities Research Board and managed by the trAce Online Writing Centre at Nottingham Trent University. The project facilitates examination and analysis of a unique body of material alongside a programme of experiential research involving a collaboration between Kate Pullinger, a print-based author keen to investigate the potential of electronic literature; Sue Thomas, originally a print-based author but now working in both media, and the trAce team of specialists. Pullinger's engagement with the project is a combination of training and support as she learns how to read and create works in the digital medium.

This is a snapshot of a very specific evolutionary moment in the history of literature which could be compared to the moment when painters first began to make use of the camera. Although the camera did not come to replace painting, it altered the nature of artistic visual experience. Online writing is poised in a very transitory moment in its own development. It currently stands outside most English Studies and at this point it is not yet known what contribution, if any, it will make to English Literature. Nor is it known how New Media Writing will affect the way writers approach the making of texts, or the way they are read. Our area of practice is new, experimental and largely unrecorded. We hope that this research project will help promote understanding and appreciation of New Media Writing.