Category: Blog

Making Interactive Fiction: Anthologies

December 11th, 2018 by

Where the Water Tastes Like Wine, one of my favorite things I’ve worked on, came out this year. And The Silence Under Your Bed, one of my favorite things I’ve played, came out a few weeks earlier. And Cragne Manor came out this week, and has been calling to me. All of these are anthology […]

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Table of Contents – December, 2018 (Plus, author reveal for our game jam!)

December 4th, 2018 by

It’s December, somehow, already, and that means we have another game to set before you! This month on the 18th, we’ll be bringing you “Thanks for the Memories,” an original sci-fi piece from author and game writer Erin Roberts. On the 25th, we’ll feature a guest interview with Erin, where she talks about her process […]

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Author Interview: Jac Colvin (November, 2018)

November 27th, 2018 by

Jac Colvin enjoys writing interactive fiction in the fantasy genre and “Ocean’s Call” is her second story to be published with sub-Q. (The first being “Lost Ones.”) She has also written two gamebooks for Hosted Games, with a 3rd due to be published next year. When not underwater, she can be sometimes be found on […]

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#subQjam Open for Game and Proposal Entries through December 15th

November 15th, 2018 by

As we announced last month, from November 15 to December 15, we’ll be hosting a game jam open to very short pieces of interactive fiction or sequential art on the theme of love. We’ll also be accepting submissions for interactive fiction proposals through our Submittable portal for authors new to the idea of interactive fiction. The […]

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Making Interactive Fiction: Interiority

November 13th, 2018 by

One of the things that sets prose fiction apart from other media is its ability to piece apart the thoughts and feelings of a character in a direct, unmediated way. In prose, it’s very natural to simply peer into a character’s inner thoughts. But that’s not the only option, and in interactive writing, there are […]

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Table of Contents – November, 2018

October 31st, 2018 by

It’s November! We have some exciting things going on this month, not least of which is our second game from author Jac Colvin, whose Russalka game “Lost Ones” we published back in March. This month’s game, “Ocean’s Call,” features a different kind of supernatural water creature, and one that’s just as steeped in mythology as […]

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Author Interview: Anna Anthropy

October 23rd, 2018 by

Anna Anthropy is a game designer, author and educator. She teaches game design as DePaul University’s Game Designer in Residence. Her next book, Make Your Own Video Games with Twine!, is out in January. She lives in Chicago with a little black cat named Encyclopedia Frown. She is the author of our October game, Queers […]

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Announcing Sub-Q Jam, a Game Jam and Limited Submission Window from sub-Q Magazine!

October 21st, 2018 by

This month’s game on our website, Anna Anthropy’s “Queers in Love at the End of the World,” gives you only 10 seconds per playthrough to make your choices and see what happens. That unusual design choice is part of what gives the game such a forceful, compelling impact—a sense of urgency and hopelessness and hopefulness […]

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Making Interactive Fiction: The Branch and the Merge

October 11th, 2018 by

Branching stories run naturally into the problem of combinatorial explosion. If you keep writing different variants for each choice the player could make, eventually you end up with too many branches to write or manage. Sam Kabo Ashwell calls this structure the “time cave,” and while it has been used in the past, the amount […]

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Table of Contents – October, 2018

October 2nd, 2018 by

Up here in the northern hemisphere, October heralds the onset of fall—shorter days, longer nights, a crisp coldness to the air that speaks of the coming of winter. One of the reasons I like fall so much is the reaction that gathering dark pulls out of people. There’s a tendency to gather, to light fires, […]

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Author Interview: Caroline Yoachim

September 25th, 2018 by

Hugo and three-time Nebula Award finalist Caroline M. Yoachim is a prolific author of short stories, appearing in Asimov’s, Fantasy & Science Fiction, Clarkesworld, and Lightspeed, among other places. Her debut short story collection, Seven Wonders of a Once and Future World & Other Stories, came out in 2016. Caroline is the author of our […]

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Making Interactive Fiction: Adapting from Other Genres

September 11th, 2018 by

The best kind of interactivity in a story is interactivity that resonates with its themes and characters. One useful approach to thinking about design issues is to adapt models from other genres. Even if the result doesn’t much resemble the starting point, it’s productive to have a guide to direct where you’re going. Emily Short’s […]

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Table of Contents – September, 2018

September 4th, 2018 by

When I was a kid, there was little I liked more than reading—unless maybe it was computer games. So the first time I saw a Choose Your Own Adventure (CYOA) book in my school’s library, I was excited. It was like the best of both worlds! I got to be in control of the characters, just like […]

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Author Sunyi Dean

Author Interview: Sunyi Dean

August 28th, 2018 by

Sunyi Dean is a writer of speculative fiction, currently living in the UK. Some of her other stories can be found lurking suspiciously in the pages of FFO, Andromeda Spaceways, and Aurealis. Sunyi is the author of our August game, John Kills Jenny. This interview was conducted via e-mail in August of 2018. sub-Q Magazine: What […]

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Making Interactive Fiction: Scenes

August 21st, 2018 by

Whether we outline first, or just start writing, any prose story longer than a short vignette will break down into distinct scenes. In interactive narrative, this works a little differently: IF and games sometimes make it hard to cut from one story beat to another; stories aren’t necessarily one continuous line of events where we […]

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August 2018 – Table of Contents

August 7th, 2018 by

The innate nature of humanity is a topic that’s as old as thought. In Warring States China, for example, Mengzi held that human nature—while innately good—was corruptible by society, while Xunzi argued that society was the only thing which taught good behaviour in the first place. (Xunzi, ever the optimist, also thought that people had […]

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