QCA's Dr. Jason Nelson and PhD candidate Marianna Shek, are two of five shortlisted for the QUT Digital Literature Award 2017.
Dr Jason Nelson for Nine Billion Branches:
The world, its politics and environments, conflicts and economies, is in peril, in disarray. We are flooded with tragic tales and the shameful deeds of others. And because of this we have lost sight of the beauty, the story and narrative hidden in the local, in the landscapes around us. We filter out the seemingly mundane of our immediate world. And yet it is in this immediate world where beauty lives, and change begins.
'Nine Billion Branches' finds a unique way to represent fragmented and non-linear narrative. It grasps at meaning in a way that is thoroughly contemporary, reminiscent of grappling with social media threads mid-conversation. In 'Nine Billion Branches' Jason Nelson makes a pointed critique of Australian culture, the commercialisation of public spaces, and the politicisation of private spaces. It is a piece that could only exist in a digital environment, but maintains a handmade aesthetic, finding beauty in mundane space of everyday life.
– Judge's Comments
Marianna Shek for Limerence:
Limerence is a story about love, friendship, and social connections in cyberspace. The story application is designed for the tablet and is a commentary on the way our culture digests media—the way that media has been embedded into our daily lives, our guilty, voyeuristic pleasure, and our addiction to being online.
This app for the iPad opens up a chat box and a swirling sea of websites which each float to the surface to gradually reveal more about protagonist Clarice and her complex relationships online. As the characters message each other, web-based evidence mounts. This story nicely catches the flavour of love-lives online and their layers of hype, voyeurism, addiction, deception, revelation and betrayal.
– Judge's Comments