December 26, 2002

Restoration Blogging

Starting on January 1st, the Diary of Samuel Pepys (from the Project Gutenberg edition) will be presented in blog form by Phil Gyford. It's a pretty neat set-up, with links to background and to footnotes, and additional space for readers to add annotations of their own. Each day will bring a new entry.

I read about the project on BoingBoing, my source for so much info these days. I like the idea of the blog being used in literary ways - the form has potential which is mostly unused. I know someone already maintains a blog which chronicles the Gallic Wars from Julius Caesar's point of view, Bloggus Caesari, and there was an essay on fTrain (which I really should look up) in which Paul Ford outlined many ideas for creative use of weblogs... Here it is.

What happens to diaries or journals when they are written for an audience - not just the writer's future self, but for some other reader? I remember how Tanizaki's novel The Key plays with the form - with deception, betrayal, and suspense. Both husband and wife keep diaries. How much is being read by the other - and how much of what is written is true and how much fantasy? What would happen to that novel if it were rewritten as weblog?

Posted by EGP at December 26, 2002 2:38 PM