Pub Buzz: The Revolution Will Be Digitized
The book's original music, which is cued by specific page turns, was written by Danielewski's friend Christopher O'Reilly, who'd composed the pieces for a staged shadow play of the story when the book was first published in limited Dutch release in 2005. "I'd got a grant to support Chris' role [in the live performances]. It dawned on us: Why not use it for a score for the ebook?"
Sullam employed an Excel spreadsheet to keep track of the thematic variations and avoid repetition.
eyond the granular details, there are bigger issues at play. For instance, is it the same book now?
"At what point are we moving away from the novel entirely and moving into a new art form?" asks Danielewski. "Expectations need to be put aside and managed differently. … We didn't want to get too ahead of the text itself so that it became an animated movie of sorts. That's where we spent the most time [on the project], determining what not to do. At what point are we moving too many letters around? At what point is there too much sound? At what point are we interfering too much with the whole experience?"
It's a question Danielewski will grapple with as he and Sullam convert the more intricate House of Leaves and Only Revolutions into digital formats. (The two started with House of Leaves but "that was so immense and complicated that we backed down" and tested the waters with the much shorter Sword.)
How best to navigate this new intersection of media while remaining true to the original works, which are hybrids of text and design themselves?