A Progressive/ Collaborative Literary Work

Forgive me if this is an existing mode of writing that I am unfamiliar with.

A Progressive/ Collaborative Literary Work would be developed by a group of writers. A subject would be agreed upon (or it could be looser depending on the intended outcome) and then the participants established. The first person would begin the work. Perhaps each person could write a chapter of a book for example.

After the worked was deemed complete (the last person added their part), the first person would make edits, then sequentially each contributor would make edits. The process could be repeated or changed as desired until the group agreed that the work was ready to be considered for publishing.

I think some key factors to the project’s success would be:

-Choose the group carefully (make sure you can work well with the group members and admire the quality of their work)
-Establish and stick to deadlines
-It will be what it will, you can’t control the outcome, it may take a while to get a rhythm going between the group members

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4 Responses to “A Progressive/ Collaborative Literary Work”

  1. John Shapter Says:

    I actually got to know my second wife by starting something like this online. We had never met but wrote alternative chapters of a book. To make life interesting, each contributor had to specify a style or genre for the next to use in the following chapter.
    Easier to do now, maybe by opening a password protected blog to use as the tool for developing the idea, then visible for others to follow.

  2. David Says:

    That’s quite a coll story John! Thanks for the variation idea with each contributor specifing a style or genre for the next to use in the following chapter.

  3. David Says:

    cool, woops.

  4. Dylan Says:

    There is an existing mode of writing that is similar to the one you’ve described here. It’s called exquisite corpse. It was popular among the Dada and surrealist artists, but it was usually used to create poetry and images. The big difference, I think, is that with an exquisite corpse composition, there isn’t much editing, and a contributor usually doesn’t see what was created before. It is only when the whole thing is complete that everyone can see all the pieces.