365 x 365: a digital experiment that's a missed opportunity

James Robertson's daily 365-word stories are a promising idea let down by poor digital designNew Year's Day saw the launch of 365, a collaboration between Scottish writer James Robertson and Hamish Hamilton, a Penguin imprint. It sounded promising: one 365-word story to be published online every day, with a print collection at the end of the year.I was disappointed to find out Robertson wrote them all last year. The best thing about digital publishing is its immediacy, so it would have been nice to publish the stories as soon as they were written. That way, 365 could have been a gripping feat of endurance, as well as an experiment in form.Robertson's stories are published on fivedials.com, the home of Hamish Hamilton's literary journal. I read Day 13, about a government minister who discovers the "five a day" initiative is poisoning the public. It's wry and imaginative, not bad for 365 words, but leaves me wanting more. I look for the stories from the last two weeks but can't find them. The website only displays the latest one.There are no links to the previous stories. The only way of reading them is by scrolling down @fivedials's Twitter feed or manually adding /day12 or /day3 to the URL.Navigation and usability are so fundamental to design it seems strange that they have been overlooked. If the Five Dials site was unable to cope with an archive of posts, why not build a microsite? And how about a daily mailing list so the stories get delivered direct to your... Continue reading at 'The Guardian'

[ The Guardian | 2014-01-19 00:00:00 UTC ]
News tagged with: #twitter feed #delivered direct #print book

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