11 January 2011

The collaborateurs

Just now, @MancLibraries directed their not insubstantial 3,502 Twitter followers to their brilliant bookish blog Manchester Lit List and, in particular, a piece about FoldingStory, a "group storytelling game". Only yesterday, Radio 4's Front Row was inviting listeners to add the next part to their Brett Easton Ellis-bred Chain Story, following on from Man Booker Prize winner Howard Jacobson. (Send a maximum of 50 words by email to frontrow@bbc.co.uk or via Twitter @BBCFrontRow before 31 January.) Just last month, Tim Burton's Cadavre Exquis took its last collaborative Tweet, and you can now read the full Stain Boy tale here.

This upturn in interest is nothing if not a weird kind of coincidence, as I've recently been extolling the virtues of a good game of Consequences. It's such a fun way to collaborate as a writer as the results can be so imaginary and tangential. I experienced much glee joining in the Tim Burton experiment and contributing a line to Poem 27 as part of the Angels & Anarchy show at Manchester Art Gallery. I also harped on about my love of the Exquisite Corpse back in May in the comments on Art of Fiction, the blog by Adrian Slatcher, who organised a couple of rounds as part of Madlab's (seemingly now defunct) Interesting Monday. Hopefully, I myself will be helping spread the pleasures of the art form further afield some time soon. As they say: watch this space.

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