Designing Storyworlds

Session Type: Hacking
Session Category: Creative
Session Leader: Lance Weiler & Janine Saunders

Day: Saturday
Room: WA10
Time: 10:30am – 1:30pm

Session Notes


This is an amazing time to be a storyteller. But in many ways, traditional forms of film, TV, and games are stuck in the 20th century. The great works of the 21st century will be driven by creative uses of technology. As authorship changes and audiences become their own media companies, a new language is emerging that enables characters, stories and locations to travel beyond a single screen and reach into the real world. At the same time storytelling is well-positioned to help drive the next generation of social applications bringing with it new opportunities to entertain, provoke and inspire.

Join us for an open-ended story R&D workshop that mixes design thinking, storytelling, game design and hacking to bring a number of exciting projects to life in the room.

Three award-winning filmmakers with rich histories in interactive storytelling and design will open up their projects in an effort to experiment and push the boundaries of participatory storytelling. Three unique storyworlds, plus 1 UFO paranormal cult, plus 1 NYC down-and-out thriller, plus 1 time capsule driven narrative = 3 hours of story hacking fun.


Conspicuous— A suburban mom discovers her husband is having an affair. In the aftermath, she becomes a private detective. Think Weeds meets artist Sophie Calle.

The Lost Children—An ongoing intergalactic war between the cult of The Lost Children and their arch-enemies, The Shadowmen. Stories and themes will include the real science of asteroids and comets, the paranormal, UFOs, cult psychology, family and faith.

Wish for the Future— A participatory storytelling project with a 100 year life cycle. A collective narrative that is built on “wishes,” turning them from a blurry future into something that is tangible.


Experimentation, discussion, and protoype of new storytelling techniques.