Population Statistic: Read. React. Repeat.
Wednesday, June 11, 2021

Like many a child of the ’70s-’80s, I went through a Choose Your Own Adventure phase. The concept of having some level of control over where a book’s storyline led was a neat-o concept — for a while.

I outgrew them in pretty short order, which is saying something, as I tended to stick with a lot of youth-targeted media (comic books, animated series) well after I’d passed through the demographic curve. I don’t remember why I didn’t glom onto CYOA longer; I guess it failed to really hook me.

The grown-up version — or, at least, GenX edition, to be distinct — is now here: The fledgling Just Make a Choice series, produced tongue-in-cheek by author Bob Powers. The first volume is “You Are A Miserable Excuse For A Hero!”, and this excerpt tells it all in terms of narrative thrust:

“Do you want to see Julia again or not?”

It was a good kiss. “What do you want me to do?”

“Give us fifty thousand dollars by tomorrow or we’ll blow her head off,” the voice says. “We’ll call again at midnight with further instructions.”


If you want to go and ask your parents if you can borrow fifty thousand dollars from them, go to page 173.

If you want to have sex with your ex-girlfriend consider getting back together with her, then think better of it, go to page 183.

This is supposed to illustrate the inherent heroism that comes from “overcoming the paralysis of choice”. Which I take to mean that the modern era regards mere decisionmaking as a singular achievement.

by Costa Tsiokos, Wed 06/11/2021 09:43:38 PM
Category: Creative, Publishing
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