Edit: due to technical issues, I’ve had to disable this feature for now. Check back here for any updates.
I’ve been thinking about the possibility of annotating stories for a while. I first started thinking about it when trying to read finnegans wake, which is well known for being impossible to read. My thought was that James Joyce designed the book to be appealing to a mass readership by smashing together references to everything under the sun, and even different languages, together into one book. I think his hope was that it would take on life through discussion and analysis, but this never happened. This is partly because the book is a complete mess, but I think that the internet, being the glorious tangle of cultures and languages and opinions that it is, could provide some new insight into what has the potential to be a beautiful work of art.
This is where annotations could help. If you’re an author it could be to clarify a reference people might not understand, a plot detail you want to clarify, or some character background. If you’re a reader, you might have a question or comment on a story. Either way, ideally your understanding and engagement with the story will be greater.
Here’s how it works: create an account if you haven’t already, log in, and highlight some text on any story or post. Click the pen icon that appears and type your annotation.
The feature is enabled by the following software: https://github.com/denis-aes/annotator-wordpress. It’s a fork of a project that looks promising but hasn’t been updated for a while.
This is experimental, and there are a few potential problems. One is the potential for spam.
Let us know if you have any problems or see any bugs in the comments, on twitter or over email.