Dispatches from a Cursed REALM
In 2022, the Wordler Project started as one author’s experiment in Web3 publishing. In 2023, it will become an experiment in collaboration, thanks to a partnership with PageDAO, the Web3 author’s guild. Working from a common set of daily prompts, PageDAO Authors will be able to create and share Web3 stories that link and connect with each other through the blockchain.
Science and/or Magic has recently discovered a vast interconnected cluster of realms called the Great Everything. Time within the Great Everything is synchronized by a set of five-letter Words, which manifest in the same order throughout the realms.
Words may manifest in any number of ways, apparent or arcane. For example, in the REALM of Wordler Village, Words manifest as elements of the Word Wizard’s Curse. In our own world, Words manifest as answers to the daily Wordle, which makes it possible for Authors to keep track of them.
Throughout the Great Everything, each Word is associated with a numbered Day. The current Era of Words began with Day 0 across all realms, coinciding with the first Wordle in our own world during the Summer of 2021 and with the casting of the Word Wizard’s Curse in Wordler Village. In most realms, including our own, Days of the Word run for 24 hours. In other realms, a Day of the Word may last for several days of local time, or for several weeks, or even for centuries. Travel between realms is possible, but the Day of the departure realm must always match the Day of the arrival realm.
Participating Authors can create realm of their own in any genre and have them link seamlessly into the Great Everything.
Vignettes are mintable rough drafts, flash fiction, or poems inspired by Words of the Day and shared to the community. Cent Pages, Readl, Mirror, and MoonPage are among the Web3 platforms suited to minting these informal, short-form vignettes.
As an example, the Wordler Village Vignettes are serialized episodes written by Cryptoversal and set within the REALM that includes Wordler Village. Each Wordler Village Vignette takes place on a Day of continuity within the current Era of Days. On each Day, an agent of the Curse selects a champion to quest for the manifest Word in order to save the denizens of Wordler Village for one more day. The Word of each Day manifests within the physical laws of the realm and also tends to inspire the themes of each vignette.
Participating authors can choose to issue Co-Author Tokens linked to a Token-Mediated Co-Author License, or ToMCAL, which grants non-exclusive IP rights in the characters, settings, and/or continuity of that author’s story realm. These can be used to create derivative works for personal or commercial purposes.
As an example, Wordler Village Vignettes in Cryptoversal’s 23-episode NIGHTfall storyline have been linked on-chain to a ToMCAL that grants IP rights in 23 Wordler characters, 23 settings within the REALM, and 23 Days of continuity.
Live Manuscripts are collaborative documents that collect Wordler Vignettes and other rough drafts into works in progress that can be shared with the community for collaborative input. Live Manuscripts can be set up on any collaborative platform, such as Google Docs or World Anvil’s manuscript feature.
As an example, Wordler Village Vignettes issued so far have been collected into three coherent volumes that are in the process of being edited and updated for professional publication. Currently available Live Manuscripts include wordlerQUEST (Days 353-392), NIGHTfall (Days 392-415), and Samhain 2022 (499-529).
Wordler Vignettes tend to build upon one another, creating nuggets of lore that can be compiled into a coherent story setting. A Lore site for the REALM containing Wordler Village is being developed and will include helpful information for all participating Web3 authors and their readers.
Game mechanics applied to the Wordler Project can enable authors to adapt their worlds to a common system of tabletop or video gaming across the realms. The Lore site, in addition to acting as a resource for authorship, can serve as an incubator for the Wordler gaming system.
Web3 author and proponent of sustainability, representation, equitable distribution of resources, and inclusive access to technology.