Blog fiction and its successors: The emergence of a relational poetics

Emma Segar*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (journal)peer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


The appearance of the blogging platform created a new epistolary form for writers, with an inbuilt means of instant publication. Blog fiction could be serialized in real time, distributed between multiple online spaces and supplemented in commentary sections by other bloggers, real and fictional. Bad Influences (Segar, 2013a) was an experimental blog fiction making narrative use of these distributions in time, space and authorship (Walker Rettberg, 2004) as well as many other formal blog characteristics, including character avatars, interactive quizzes, aggregated feeds and blog design elements. As the story progressed, it became apparent that the processes of writing, reading and interacting, both within and outside of the text, created relations between the writer/creator and readers/participants who were an essential factor in the realization of the narrative. This led to the conclusion that blog fiction has a relational poetics. Coined by van Rooden (2011) after Bourriaud's Relational Aesthetics (2002), this term is used here to describe a narrative process that relies on the human relations surrounding the text as much as on the text itself. Similarly relational forms of fiction are developing on the newer social networks, particularly Twitter, and transmediality holds yet more potential.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)20-33
Number of pages14
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 24 Jan 2017


  • Blog fiction
  • collaborative fiction
  • digital fiction
  • digital literature
  • distributed narrative
  • epistolary
  • interactive fiction
  • new media
  • relational poetics


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