I’m writing an encyclopedia entry on email novels for a guide to digital textuality and came across one that was new-to-me: Mo Fanning’s Place Their Face, the 2007 story of Lisa Doyle, a single, slightly desperate woman looking for love, whose email inbox is open for readers to explore. Because I wanted to enter it into the ELMCIP Electronic Literature Knowledge Base, I searched around for Mo Fanning and discovered he published a later version of Place Their Face as a print novel in 2008. I checked Google Scholar to see if anyone had cited the email novel (I don’t think so) and discovered this lovely patent for a reading lounge chair where readers lying on their stomach may “place their face” in a hole through which the book or magazine may be seen.

I’m not sure yet why the email novel is titled “Place Their Face”. But if I were still updating my list of email narratives (anno 2004) I would add this story to the list.

2 thoughts on “Place Their Face

  1. Laura Santini

    Dear Jill Walker,
    hope this is not bothering you. In the last years, I’ve been drawn to experience some early examples of digital email novels, but have not been able to get to “Kind of Blue” as all links are either taking me to an error page or re-direct me to Nottingham Trent University.
    Would you be so kind to provide a URL where I can read Rettberg’s novel – I would have asked him but could not find his email address.
    Kind Regards

    1. Jill

      Hi Laura! Yes, it’s online on Scott’s website: http://retts.net/kindofblue/. I see the link from his website is broken – I’ll tell him to update that!

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