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About the Story
An autobiographical work with both prose and poetry. From a cabin in Wisconsin to the Czech Republic to a land underneath the North Sea.
Entrant, Main Festival - Spring Thing 2015
Emily Short's Interactive Storytelling
Alan DeNiro’s Doggerland belongs to the interactive poetry school of Twine: highly personal, only loosely narrative, making play with hover effects as well as links in order to evoke some connections that aren’t explicitly stated. It concerns, among other things: winter and isolation, global warming, childhood, problems with America’s health care safety net, parenthood, glaciation, the passage of time, and a personal decision which (since the work is described as autobiographical) I assume is true to DeNiro’s actual experience.
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This sort of thing is hard to "review" or discuss; it feels like something deeply personal, as if my presence is an intrusion.
As far as the narrative goes, it's a sequence of poetic vignettes about becoming a parent, and the ongoing fear for future generations as a result of global warming. The title refers to a former land under the current North Sea, a land that submerged as a result of climate change after the Ice Age. What did the people live there think as the land faded away? There are digressions on rural poverty, healthcare, and life changes. The story is very short but dense, about five minutes for me.
As often the case with Anya DeNiro's stuff, the writing has an incredible economy, and interactivity is used to full effect, with a lot of mutating text and cycling links. I absolutely love the way the text is presented, even if the mouse-over effects could get to be too much at times. There were images whose symbolic meanings I didn't exactly understand.
Anyway, it was beautiful and I wanted to cry. It was as if the author could beam a certain mood straight into my brain.
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This is version 4 of this page, edited by Emily Short on 7 June 2015 at 1:28pm. - View Update History - Edit This Page - Add a News Item