Among Others (2016 KAISER DOWNIE)

Among Others is a book that interweaves the memories, observations, emotions, and reveries of more than a dozen people in an intricate counterpoint of texts. It owes something to the techniques of film montage, but equally to those of Japanese linked verse, not to mention the ubiquity of links in the digital writing of today. But Among Others is a physical book, celebrating the advantages that physical page-turning has over e-text linking, even while using certain digital methods for both text analysis and diagram layout.

The book consists of 69 quintets, each a group of five linked texts. No principal figure is identified by name, and pronouns are varied freely, so that in any given text someone may be an I, a you, or a he or she. Thus while you can still sense the boundaries between identities and experiences, you can never completely pin them down.

At the back are maps showing story locations, which reveal geographical clusters ranging from the likely (New York City, the west coast, Europe) to the not-unexpected (Japan, Asia, the Middle East) to the unlikely (the Kierabati archipelago, Guadeloupe, the Sierras Tarahumaras).

Credits: written and written down by Paul Kaiser; design by Marc Downie and Kaiser; code by Downie.