Help me find this short story (interactive fiction, grown-up CYOA)
February 3, 2017 11:27 AM   Subscribe

I remember reading a short story years ago, and it moved me so much that I've never forgotten it. I have, however, forgotten the title and author. Please help!

I remember reading a short story years ago, and it moved me so much that I've never forgotten it. I have, however, forgotten the title and author. Please help!

It was interactive fiction, AKA a "choose your own adventure" style story.

As far as I know, this particular story was the only piece of interactive fiction the author had written.

The setting was ordinary life: no super spies, dragons, robots, or monsters.

Here's a basic synopsis (some spoilers):
YOU, the main character, made a series of choices throughout the day, and eventually, one of them resulted in your death. The last page was a jump to the future, when you got to see how society looked upon your seemingly mundane life with admiration and love.

I'd love to read this story again. Please help!

Thanks!
posted by ToucanDoug to Writing & Language (5 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
 
I haven't found anything specifically about this book, but here's a Wikipedia list of Choose Your Own Adventure books, which categorizes the titles, and lists all the titles (and new titles used when republished), the author, and the original year of publication.

But upon re-reading your original question, it might have not been an official CYOA book - was it?
posted by filthy light thief at 2:23 PM on February 3, 2017


Is this IF or a (published) short story taking the form of an IF transcript?
posted by steady-state strawberry at 3:07 PM on February 3, 2017


Was it something that would have been a entry in the IF Competition? Results here go back to 1995! There's also an IF Database! And this site as well! (I was deeply affected -- actually RUINED -- by one of these IF pieces, ages ago, and it comes to mind all the time. I'm kind of afraid to find it again, and I think I just did...)
posted by kittyb at 9:12 PM on February 3, 2017


Thanks, everyone, for the help so far. I don't believe it was an IF entry, and it was definitely not an official CYOA book. Pretty sure this author only ever did this once, and it was collected in a book of his short stories.
posted by ToucanDoug at 2:34 PM on February 4, 2017


Final update from the OP:
I received an email from the author himself! Love it when the interconnected webs makes the seemingly impossible, possible.

Here's what he wrote:
"So I'm not a registered MetaFilter user, but I was browsing their bank of questions when I came across your query about the Choose Your Own Adventure story whose title you were trying to remember and realized that I was the author. The story is called "The Human Soul as a Rube Goldberg Device: A Choose Your Own Adventure Story" and is most easily found in a collection called The View from the Seventh Layer.

Best,
Kevin Brockmeier"
posted by cortex (staff) at 11:55 AM on April 9, 2018 [1 favorite]


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