Author Archive

Tacoma and the Stories We Leave Behind

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The video game Tacoma is a story about an empty space station where its depths aren’t something presented but searched for—on bookshelves and in bedrooms. Sometimes stories are with the things we leave behind.

Learning to Read Conflict in The Solar Grid

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In The Solar Grid, the people on earth are screwed. A global ecological disaster. A corporate-sponsored attempt to “fix” it, and our willingness to assign the label of “third world” to a place so we can ignore it.

Breaking Under the Weight of Formula in The Vision

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In the recent Marvel comic, The Vision, Tom King and Gabriel Hernandez Walta explore the tight rope between narrative exploration and the expectations of continuity in a series about a family of superpowered robots trying to live a different kind of story.

The Heart in Exile, the Original Queer Detective Noir Novel

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Garland uses the detective story to place the gay experience of the era through a guided lens. The novel opens in a way you’ve heard before: a mysterious woman enters a man’s office unannounced. Only, the office isn’t a private eye’s but a bisexual psychiatrist’s, and the woman’s dead

With Those We Love Alive and a Different Way to Write a Short Story

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The medium we present something on, often defines the kinds of stories we can tell and how we tell them. In the digital age, With Those We Love Alive shows us another way to write a story even if its written on our skin.

Unhaunting the Small Town Narrative in NIGHT IN THE WOODS

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What makes up the American small-town identity feels solidified in the cultural consciousness, but that depiction is a veneer that needs interrogation. The game Night in the Worlds and novel Universal Harvester comes at a time to do just that and rehabilitate that archetypal image.

How to Tell a Story in a Quiet Year

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There is no one way to tell a story and at the table. Some stories can be told with a map, a deck of cards, and a group of friends trying their best to build a civilization.

The Transformative Violence of Yakuza 0

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Violence in media has always been contentious. Violence is in everything, but there’s always a voice in the room trying to convince everyone of its corruptive force. This perspective tends to ignore how when we fictionalize violence, it stops being violence altogether, thematically changing itself into something that’s only