Critical Commentary


By examining narrative strategies in online contexts productive synergies have been found for innovating the traditional written text of the young and new adult novel. This has been achieved not only by representing digital communications technologies and their forms on the page but by closely observing the changes in language and meaning this new media has created. Building on the work of previous works of fiction for young and new adults that address issues of identity, story telling and our digital world my novel attempts to not only explore, represent and play with these strategies in the novel-text but also to critique them. Drawing attention to the affordances and problems arising from lives lived increasingly online.

It is hoped that this work will create opportunities for new discourses and discussion in the academic community and beyond around online identity construction, privacy, kinship, personal actualisation and social change that focus on the role of the particular narrative strategies at work and the impact a better understanding of those strategies can afford creative writing that seeks to represent and reflect on this important part of our lives.


Through the study of the role particular narrative strategies play in the construction and depiction of identity in young adult novels with digital communication technologies, and in the wider research context of social media/internet communications studies, I have written a novel that explores these strategies and what they mean for my characters in their story world.