Victory Garden

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Description (in English): 

The Gulf War and its media frenzy serves as the backdrop for this Dickensian tale of campus politics, seduction, burglary, dissent, unsafe driving, and war.

(Source: Victory Garden - Eastgate Systems)

Victory Garden is a hypertext novel which is set during the Gulf War, in 1991. The story centres on Emily Runbird and the lives and interactions of the people connected with her life. Although Emily is a central figure to the story and networked lives of the characters, there is no one character who could be classed as the protagonist. Each character in Victory Garden lends their own sense of perspective to the story and all characters are linked through a series of bridges and connections.

There is no set "end" to the story. Rather there are multiple nodes that provide a sense of closure for the reader. In one such "ending", Emily appears to die. However, in another "ending", she comes home safe from the war. How the story plays out depends on the choices the reader makes during their navigation of the text. The passage of time is uncertain as the reader can find nodes that focus on the present, flashbacks or even dreams and the nodes are frequently presented in a non-linear fashion. The choices the reader makes can lead them to focus on individual characters, meaning that while there are a series of characters in the story the characters focused on can change with each reading, or a particular place.

Upon entering the work the reader is presented with a series of choices as to how to navigate the story. The reader may enter the text through a variety of means: the map of the 'garden', the lists of paths, or by the composition of a sentence. Each of these paths guides the reader though fragmented pieces of the story (in the form of node) and by reading and rereading many different paths the reader receives different perspectives of the different characters.

(Source: Wikipedia entry on Victory Garden)

Critical writing that references this work:

Title Author Yearsort descending
Digital Poetics: The Making of E-Poetries Loss Pequeño Glazier 2001
Internet Hyperfiction: Can it ever Become a Widely Popular Artform? Nikolaj Jensen 2001
Storyspace 1 Mark Bernstein 2002
Multimedia Criticism Eric Dean Rasmussen 2003
Fiction and Interaction: How Clicking a Mouse Can Make You Part of a Fictional World Jill Walker Rettberg 2003
Destination Unknown: Experiments in the Network Novel Scott Rettberg 2003
Tending the Garden Plot: Victory Garden and Operation Enduring.... David Ciccoricco 2004
Hyperworks: On Digital Literature and Computer Games Anna Gunder 2004
Cyberspace, Cybertexts, Cybermaps Marie-Laure Ryan 2004
Creating Screen-Based Multiple State Environments: Investigating Systems of Confutation Donna Leishman 2004
Repetition and Recombination: Reading Network Fiction David Ciccoricco 2005
Hypertextual Fiction on the Internet: A Structural and Narratological Analysis Roman Zenner 2005
Le récit littéraire interactif. Narrativité et interactivité Serge Bouchardon 2005
A New Media Reading Strategy Cheryl E. Ball 2005
Footnotes in Fiction: A Rhetorical Approach Edward Maloney 2005
Born Digital: Writing Poetry in the Age of New Media Maria Engberg 2007
Szellem a gépben. A hypertext Zoltán Szűts 2007
Canonizing Hypertext: Explorations and Constructions Astrid Ensslin 2007
Reading Network Fiction David Ciccoricco 2007
Tekstspill i hypertekst. Koherensopplevelse og sjangergjenkjennelse i lesing av multimodale hyperfiksjoner Hans Kristian Rustad 2008
Screen shots: 
Victory Garden cover image
Victory Garden map image
Victory Garden screenshot
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Jill Walker Rettberg