On a Thursday in late April last year, Creative Loafing's own Debbie Michaud received a curious package in the mail. The contents of said parcel were peculiar, to say the least: a note written in loopy scrawl, a doodle of a UFO with a cryptic code, a $10 bill, and a fragment from an essay written by an Atlanta writer—namely, the writer who is writing to you now. Over the next few weeks, similar envelopes (with story fragments from different writers) made their way to the Georgia Voice, the Wren's Nest, and Youngblood Gallery, and began popping up in between pages at a bookstore and strewn from a tree in Cabbagetown. Thinking caps were donned. Wikis were created. The pavement was pounded by our CL compatriots. Literary sleuths were stymied. And so it continued for over a year, with these mysterious parcels being hidden and mailed around town, until the final envelope — number 100 — had been spoken for.
Then, this week, a manila envelope with a familiar penmanship appeared on my desk. This time, there were no enigmatic codes, no scraps of paper with story fragments, no $10 bill. Just a letter, and a story. It's a story written by Atlanta, from articles and essays and artists' statements; from a Leonard Cohen song, from a Gone With The Wind excerpt. One hundred snippets sewn together to create a twelve-page short story. (Full-screen version here.)
Narrative Urge: HYDRA
"So now we're reaching the end of whatever it was we started—you envelope finders, and me! Or else a new beginning. It would be a great risk for a public artist to make an individual statement without input from anyone else. A group of people can create something bigger than any person alone can."