Follow James Stark's blog to find out the latest about the multimedia experience that is The Frequency Effect and about a new wave of multimedia novels.

Why create a multimedia novel? What's the point?

When I set out to create a multimedia novel, I guess I was like every other person who had considered it. Why aren't there others who have done it before? There were. There were many great articles that highlighted the potential e.g. 3 multimedia novels that could change the way we read. A multimedia novel - In for The Kills - also made the man booker long list back in 2013. But they are not quite the same as an immersive cinematic novel.

I invested an incredible amount of time researching the themes of this story to bring together an immersive cinematic experience. I came at it from the perspective of storytelling. The elements were simply a new way to turn imagination into reality. Because the story was so unique, the elements were so unique. It was clear to see that the whole concept was unique. 

That brought many challenges. It is not easy to get people excited about something that they haven't seen before or don't understand. Telling someone about the impact of the iPhone without them ever having seen a smartphone isn't easy. People have been watching TV for years, but it still took a while for Netflix to change their approach to viewing. 

In creating this story, it was clear that there were no guarantees it would ever work. Quite the opposite. The literary industry was in decline and getting every element right meant that it had to the as good as a bestseller, with all the elements as good in their own right as the media they were created for. 

The main reason for progressing was the challenge to create something worthy of a new audience and in keeping with the revolution in the way media is consumed. I had to face key challenges... Could I bring together amazing people to believe in the concept? Could I break the boundaries of creativity? And could I do in such a way that it will remain relevant when the industry has caught on? Only time will tell.

As an independent and self-financed production, I had to be really economic. I didn't have huge budgets, but instead amazing people who were available to bring it together. The themes are so relevant, and affect so many people. The aim was therefore to try to get one person to discover and enjoy it. 

J.S.