The Missing Word

In revising some of the hypertexts she wrote during the 100 Days project, Susan Gibb noticed that some words were missing on one of the pages in a story. She remarks:

In straight narrative, this would tell me that nobody read the story. But in hypertext, they honestly could have read it and may have taken another path and missed this space.

Even with my own rereadings I’ve missed it too.

This post got me thinking about editing and proofreading hypertext. Since so much of the experience often depends upon the order in which different lexia are read, how difficult is it to anticipate how readers will interpret things coming from different paths? Is it more difficult to write and polish passages while considering the reader’s potential ignorance of pertinent parts of the story?

Philadelphia magazine office, c. 1908, Ray Stannard Baker, NYPL 1232072

I’d love to hear your responses; email me

Meanwhile, Susan Gibb has opened a hypertext writers’ group at Jürgen Fauth”s Fictionaut.