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Coffeehouse: Writings from the Web Paperback – August, 1997


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Many of the stories that appear in this collection attempt to work within normal literary conventions, although the means of publication is nontraditional. Others take advantage of the Web's graphic abilities to combine their literary voice with an artistic vision. Steve Seebol's "Very Short Stories," for example, mixes scanned photos with graphic manipulation and terse wit. The result is a cartoon-like piece slightly farther out than Gary Larsen's "The Far Side." Mark Napier's entry, "Negative Space," consists of sample images from his ongoing attempt to scan his entire apartment, object by object. Only a few of the works take their very substance from the forms of cybercommunication--among them the work "Flux," which is created by a variety of artists and relies on the way words and symbols appear on-screen for its impact. Another example is Duane Day's satirical "Music Appreciation Flow Chart," which lets Grateful Dead fans determine their opinions on any music without having to think.

Most of the works are introduced with snippets of e-mail from the creators to the editors, giving additional glimpses into the artists' voices and thoughts. Asher and Crumlish have made it a point to present a wide variety of voices, styles, and points of view. The works range from intentionally crude to well-polished and from tragic to comic. The only thing the artists involved have in common is their use of the Web as a means of presenting their literary efforts. As a result, you're bound to have a variety of responses to the diverse works here.

For those who want to jump into the online creative scene, Asher and Crumlish provide two great appendices that tell you how to find good writing on the Web and how to write for the Web yourself. -- Elizabeth Lewis

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 316 pages
  • Publisher: Manning Pubns Co (August 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1884777384
  • ISBN-13: 978-1884777387
  • Product Dimensions: 7.2 x 0.8 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #13,435,772 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Christian Crumlish has been participating in, analyzing, designing, and drawing social interactive spaces online since 1994. These days he is the curator of the Yahoo! design pattern library, a design evangelist with the Yahoo! Developer Network, and a member of Yahoo!'s Design Council.

He is the author of the bestselling The Internet for Busy People, The Power of Many, and Designing Social Interface with Erin Malone.

He has spoken about social patterns at BarCamp Block, BayCHI, South by Southwest, the IA Summit, Ignite, and Web 2.0 Expo.

Christian has a bachelor's degree in philosophy from Princeton. He lives in Oakland with his wife Briggs, his cat Fraidy, and his electric ukulele, Evangeline.

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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on December 31, 1997
Format: Paperback
I found the title eye catching and to me it said unique. After I picked it up and flipped through it, I was very intrigued and could not help buying the book. After I read it I was enlightened by such a different style of writing and it motivated me to look for more writings on the web. I especially enjoyed seeing the writers other pieces of work. I love this new anthology
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