of day, of night

Description (in English): 

of day, of night is an experimental interactive narrative / hypertext/ electronic literature work produced in Macromedia Director 6.0 by Australian artist Megan Heyward that fuses moving image, literary, game and interactive aesthetics into interactive digital form. It received initial production funding of $76K AUD from the Australian Film Commission (now Screen Australia) in 1999 and was exhibited internationally from 2001 to 2013 and published by Eastgate Systems, Inc. in 2004. To date, it is the only interactive narrative/ hypertext developed by a writer from outside North America.

The plot of the story involves a woman who has lost the ability to dream. She sets a series of creative tasks in order to start dreaming again; such as finding and collecting objects from various locations in the DAY (a street, market, river and café), imagining their fictional traces and histories, and rearranging the objects. As the user traverses the work, objects, memories and histories collide and create new meanings in the regained dream environment of NIGHT.

of day, of night has been exhibited to interactive media and electronic literature audiences in Australia, Germany, Japan, Switzerland and the USA, receiving attention for its rich visual and aural landscapes, game-like interactions and engagement with the creative potentials of interactive narrative. It received high commendations in peer-reviewed national Australian digital media awards, including AIMIA (Australian Interactive Media Industry Association) 2003, the 2002 Adelaide Festival Awards for Literature, and was a finalist in the VIPER International New Media Competition in 2002. Following its initial exhibition period of 2001- 2004 and commercial publishing by Eastgate Systems, Inc. in 2004, it has also been included in retrospective electronic literature exhibitions in the US in 2012 and 2013.

The work was developed for CD-ROM using Macromedia Director as the authoring program, and comprises 63 Director files; 31 video files, and 132 sound files. The majority of the production work was undertaken by Heyward including writing, producing, directing, interface design, animation, video editing and compositing, and most of the Director authoring. Sound design is by Sophea Lerner, music by David Claringbold, additional video compositing by Chris Caines, and advanced Lingo programming is by Sohail Dahdal. It is estimated that of day, of night  took over a 1000 hours to produce.


Writer, producer, director, graphic designer, animator, programmer: Megan Heyward



ELO 2012: ELECTRONIC LITERATURE MEDIA ART SHOW, West Virginia USA, June 20-23, 2012. 

DIGITAL STORYTELLING FESTIVAL, Sedona, Arizona, USA June 9-14, 2004

ISEA 2002, Exhibition Program, Nagoya, Japan, October 27-31, 2002.

VIPER, International Festival for Film, Video and New Media, Basel, Switzerland, October 23-27, 2002.

ELECTROFRINGE, Media Teche, Newcastle Australia, October 3-7, 2002.

FUSION, St Kilda Film Festival, Melbourne, AUS., May 7-10, 2002.

STUTTGARTER FILMWINTER, Stuttgart, Germany, January 20-26, 2002.

EXPERIMENTA “WASTE”. Blackbox, Victorian Arts Centre, October 18-November 3, 2001.

Prizes/ Awards/ Nominations

Highly Commended, AIMIA Awards 2003, Best Arts and Cultural project AIMIA for ‘of day, of night’.

Finalist, VIPER International New Media Competition, Basel, Switzerland, 2002 for ‘of day, of night’.

Finalist, 2002 Adelaide Festival Awards For Literature, the Mayne Award for Multimedia, for ‘of day, of night’.

--Entry produced by Dene Grigar & Megan Heyward, October 2019



I ♥ E-Poetry entry: 
Narrabase.net entry: 

Teaching Resource that references this work:

Screen shots: 
of day, of night screen grab
of day of night montage
of day of night montage 2

Of Day, Of Night 1- intro & excerpts as off-screen recording

Of Day, Of Night 2 :- stories and dreams as an off-screen recording

The permanent URL of this page: 
Record posted by: 
Jill Walker Rettberg