IFTF will be hosting a series of events in May leading up to NarraScope 2020!

From May 13th to May 24th, IFTF board member and chair of the Education Committee, Judith Pintar, will be hosting a two week intensive Inform 7 bootcamp. If you’ve always wanted to learn the language, or you want a refresher, this is your opportunity! This blended (synchronous/asynchronous) online workshop, hosted by IFTF and the Electronic Literatures & Literacies Lab at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, is free but limited to 25 participants.

On Monday May 25th, the theme for the NarraScope 2020 Game Jam will be announced. The Jam will be open to both individuals and teams. Full details and rules to follow.

On Thursday, May 28th, the day before NarraScope officially opens, there will be a full day of pre-conference workshops and seminars. All of these sessions are also free. Pre-registration is required, unless indicated to the contrary.

The day begins at 11:00am (EST) with Brendan Desilets’ workshop “Inform 7 and the Teaching of Writing.” A veteran teacher of IF at the middle school, high school, and university levels, Desilets will explore Inform 7 as an approach to teaching the writing process and improving students’ writing skills. Participants will leave with practical tools and ideas for using Inform 7 creatively in the classroom.

The focus on Inform 7 continues at 12:00am (EST) when the design system’s creator, Graham Nelson, will bring us up to date on what’s new with Inform since he spoke to a packed hall last year at NarraScope 2019, and what is in the works looking forward. Since we anticipate another crowd for this session, it will be streamed as a seminar rather than a workshop. No registration will be required.

At 1:00pm (EST), Mike Spivey will offer a workshop session for IF educators. Professor of Mathematics turned IF-educator, Spivey will lead a discussion in which teachers of IF are invited to share their tips, tricks, and miserable (though hopefully teachable) failures.

At 2:00pm (EST), indulge your literary proclivities with author and interactive narrative designer William Gillespie in a workshop that asks what the novel-as-game can tell us about literary game design.

Follow that session at 3:00pm (EST) with some procedural play. Anastasia Salter will join us from the University of Central Florida to teach the basics of the JavaScript library, Tracery. Workshop participants will learn to deploy poetic Twitter bots using “Cheap Bots Done Quick” platform created by George Buckenham.

At 4:00pm (EST), innovative and playful pedagogist, Matthew Farber, will lead participants in a session of the middle school party card game Awkward Moment, by Tiltfactor Laboratory. The game and meta-discussion will be used to create interactive fiction.

To top off the day, from 5:00pm to 7:00pm (EST), Stuart Moulthrop and Chris Klimas will follow up last year’s NarraScope Twine Workshop, by exploring some intermediate-level features of the Chapbook story format for Twine: mixing JavaScript in with regular Chapbook code, working with Chapbook’s debugging tools, and incorporating multimedia. No registration will be required for this session, which will be streamed.

Here is the registration link for the Inform 7 Bootcamp. Here is the link to registration for the workshop sessions. And here is the full NarraScope Schedule.

We hope you’ll join us for one of these pre-NarraScope workshops and seminars!

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