Notes on narrative complexity from today’s class

During today’s class session, we leveraged the collective intelligence of the class to develop a list of traits associated with complex narratives. I’m sure we’ve missed a few, so — if you think of other elements — please add them to the comments thread.

  • Disjointed time.
  • Disjointed point of view.
  • Non-linear and episodic.
  • Little arcs that create a larger story. Connections not immediately apparent.
  • Gestalt effect: whole is greater than the sum of the parts.
  • Actors become different characters.
  • Character development driven by plot.
  • No specific ending or clear ending or resolution?
  • Packed with symbolism that hints at meaning.
  • Question about what’s reality and what’s not.
  • Limited information and exposition.
  • Unexplained symbols. Red herrings?
  • Audience must be active in figuring out meaning.
  • Defies genre expectations (mystery without answer)
  • Calls attention to the way it is put together.

About Aaron Delwiche

This blog is intended to support the activities of students enrolled in Transmedia Storytelling and Games for the Web at Trinity University.
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