Here’s a link to my original story: http://mith.umd.edu/digitalstorytelling/?p=491
I believe that my story can have many branching paths if it were to be converted into an E-lit. I would have my E-lit mimic the format of “These Waves of Girls”. I would like it to have an older style of HTML to give the user the freedom of what links to further explore, and which were of less importance. Even though the user has their own freedom of depth of exploration, the branching paths would still place them back at the same conclusion.
One thing that I would try to avoid while creating this e-lit is making the seperate pages to lengthy. One of the main problems that I had with “These Waves of Girls” was that it took me awhile to sift through a lot of the content on the pages. I really began to lose interest before I could see how these branching paths would end up re-connecting. Although the style of the website did seem a little bit outdated by today’s standards, its simple aesthetics actually were the first thing to catch my eye. The website had a bit of a retro feel to it.
To begin to set the mood for my E-lit, I would have a repeating image of cherry blossom petals falling in the background. I would also like to have a Japanese Koto playing in the background (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cxo2skx59lU). This would begin to set the mood of an older Japanese theme. Setting is a major feature that I want to focus on. In a book, the setting is described to you. That imagination of the setting may be slightly different from person to person. In my e-lit, I want to show the viewer the exact setting that I envisioned in my head.
Within my first paragraph, I allude to a Revolution that has previously passed. This was referring to the Meiji Revolution that happened in Japan. It has been alluded to in certain Japanese anime and manga such as Rurouni Kenshin. To find more about the causes and consequences of the Meiji Revolution, I would link them to a page such as this one: http://afe.easia.columbia.edu/japan/japanworkbook/modernhist/meiji.html I would also show videos of the Meiji Era in pop culture. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nZ2IODnJOiM (There would also be a pause button for the Koto music in order to accommodate the users viewing the video).
I would also like the viewer of my e-lit to research some more information on both the protagonist and antagonist.
This is a picture of typical Japanese samurai armor. Within this picture, I would like a link that would redirect the user to this webpage: http://judoinfo.com/samurai.htm. Here the viewer can view background information on samurai while the main characters are introduced. To the average user, this webpage may seem a bit wordy, so if I could, I would find a way to highlight certain sentences to accommodate some of the curious users.
After the introduction the setting of the battlefield is described. I would place a “continue” button at the bottom of the page where the user is re-directed to another web-page I have created (I do not think that my story progresses fast enough to copy the same format as 21 steps). Instead of cherry blossom petals in the background, and calm music playing, it is replaced by a more obscure theme. There is a full moon placed centered in the background with the sound of wind blowing (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P3PJjdcL6cQ). As the battle in my narrative continues, the tension heightens. In many shows and movies, when this happens, there is an audible heartbeat. (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gNEeJT51PoQ) A sound just like this will be playing as the reader reaches the paragraph where Rai-Shin sizes up his opponent. I also want to make a big contrast between these two pages. The first page has a calmer atmosphere as it tells you the background and setting. Because my narrative isn’t exactly a fairy-tail, I want the viewer to feel the tension that I have built within the narrative.
In the next paragraph, I mention a sword technique dubbed “Ryu Shou Sen”. Assuming that Google translate is correct, I would replace the English words with the Japanese letters (龍翔セン). If these were bold, the reader would be more drawn to it and less likely to skip over it. Once clicked, they would be directed to Google translate (http://translate.google.com/) where they would be free to copy and paste the characters into the website.
In my final paragraph, I have Rai-shin break Lee’s thumb. As many people know, samurai live by the Bushido code. Those who lived by this code felt that the greatest nirvana was experienced when death was incurred on the battlefield. In our eyes we have truly consider Rai-Shin a hero for sparing his best friends life. But in the times of the samurai, that was almost unheard of. Do you think that Rai-shin made the best decision to spare his friend? With a crushed thumb, it may have been difficult for Lee to perform Seppuku (Japanese ritual suicide http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Seppuku) Although I did not specifically allude to this in my narrative, I would definitely include this in my e-lit. Rather than just accompany my narrative, I would like my e-lit to help spark some interest in the older feudal Japanese traditions and cultures.