Alex Halavais, one of my professors from Quinnipiac University, wrote a great summary on whether or not to pursue a PhD, and some of the considerations which surround that ‘terminal degree’ step. One of which is knowing who is out there doing the kind of research which is really interesting to you. Folks who know me know that I’m a bit of a wordsmith when given the time to write, and anyone who has watched a film with me will attest to the fact that I analyze plot, story development, pacing, and the craft of storytelling within various media the same way that some people breathe. It just comes naturally, and I don’t even think about what I’m doing as I do it.
As a previous post here has pointed out, I’m very interested in the way that story development and practical storytelling has been influenced by digital media. I’ve got some theories brewing but no time or funding in which to turn them into full-fledged research studies just yet.
I’m technically not out of my full time commitments just yet this week, so I’ll keep this short. I think I’ve found something academic within the halls of digital media research which could get the noggin humming again for a while. It’s a research web site attached to North Carolina State University, called “The Liquid Narrative“. From their website:
The Liquid Narrative research group at North Carolina State University’s Computer Science Department works in the area of procedural content generation — the creation of content for interactive games and other virtual environments — that uses models of narrative to build stories and tell them automatically.
A cursory glance into the research findings shows some real promise. At the very least, I know what names to do some research on back at my Alma Mater’s library just to begin developing the bibliographical list of other researchers whose work I should become acquainted with. Colleagues within the field. NCSU might be a good match for my interests. Or it might point me to a rival school, or a different research group which offers something closer to my interests. If they’re even quantifiable interests at all.
But I did want to highlight the Liquid Narrative web site as a great place to look at what some scholars are studying in the area where games, stories, and technology collide.