The Socialholic Typewriter

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The Socialholic Typewriter is a creative writing tool which enables users to collaboratively tell stories, connect with their readers, and raise inter -cultural awareness to support diversity of cultural expression . It all starts with a visual stimulus. Can you tell us a story in 300 words?


The most compelling stories are told through a multiplicity of voices and interplay of words and pictures. We believe that collaboration sparks creativity, that’s why The Socialholic Typewriter provides the image and invites you to supply the text in 300 words. The stories need to be short because we believe that flash fiction, a style of fiction of extreme brevity, is a rising literary genre which is perfect for our social media era, fast paced life and continuous flow of information. Such brief, fragmentary narratives which use two semiotic systems (the written word and the visual) can effectively inspire, entertain, empower and challenge the busy readers.


The idea was born in Cyprus after observing that literature, an influential cultural resource, has been developing separately in the two main communities and that, due to the language barrier, texts are not readily available to the members of the other community. In addition, research evidence shows that literature has often been used to reinforce the traditional nationalistic discourse, perpetuating division and hostility.


The Socialholic Typewriter wants to reclaim this powerful cultural medium to raise intercultural awareness and support and promote diversity of cultural expression. We want to enable users to co-create, have an artistic dialogue and connect through creativity. Our tool overcomes barriers posed by language, background, distance, meeting place, resources, obstacles which would traditionally hinder such a collaborative effort.



The Team

Louiza Mallouri, Teacher, Researcher:  Project Manager

Constantinos Xenofontos, Lecturer: Collaborator

Louiza Kaimaki, Visual Artist: Collaborator

Ali Gurkan, Writer: Collaborator


Community Support

Are you writer, poet, storyteller, illustrator, photographer?

Are you interested in writing, self-expression, creativity and storytelling?

Are you a reader? Are you a literature enthusiast? Join us: we believe that your unique perspective has something beautiful to add to our effort. Let’s create a new era of storytelling in Cyprus during which our different backgrounds, beliefs, ideas, imaginations are brought together in order to spark an artistic dialogue through narrative and visual storytelling. By writing stories together, we will start creating a collaborative body of stories and literature taking important steps towards a shared vision.


Budget: $26000


anthony's picture
The idea is very well thought through and is also an exciting way of bringing together many communities which are torn by politics, religion, history, etc. Also another purpose is that these stories can entertain an audience. Stories hide many meanings and no two people ever read the same book because each person has a different take on it. However there are some unanswered questions. Will the content of each story/image be understandable by all audiences? Which group is this project aimed at? Is this made available to all countries or is the main focus Cyprus? Will the stories be sorted into genres for the reader's comfort? For example some readers may prefer comedy rather than thriller. Despite these questions I believe the 300 word limit is innovative as many people these days may not have enough time to write or read a full story or book for that matter. It will be interesting to see what photos and stories will come out of this experiment, hopefully more fictional than real as to not relate to any of today's conflicts. It is in everyone's interest that none of these stories include factual information and are completely fictional. Also another challenge is advertising which is needed to raise awareness of this project, consequently attaining financial support and an acquired source for these stories/pictures. I hope the team behind this project is successful in their every effort to establish this interactive interface and develop a wide fan-base but more importantly a varied community of illustrators, artists, authors and writers.
kmaria's picture
Great idea! I think this will be a very interesting project as it is innovative in many ways!!! I will be interested to follow up this project. As a music therapist I love that it uses art to bring people together and to heal past trauma. I am confident that this project will be successful because it uses art and creative writing as a powerful tool. Very good luck!!!
louiza's picture
Hi Anthony, thank you so much for your constructive feedback! Your questions give me the opportunity to elaborate on some points which were not clear and also give us some fabulous ideas.1. Will the content of each story/image be understandable by all audiences? Indeed, this was not clear in the user journey. Users can submit in English, Greek and Turkish. If the story is in either Greek and Turkish, it will be translated into English, as one of our aims is to surpass the language barrier which has, for years, prevented the two main communities in Cyprus from accessing each other's work. 2. Which group is this project aimed at? It targets writers (aspiring, beginners, published pros), illustrators, artists and generally people interested in creativity; we aim to offer this particular group a platform to act on their creative potential and create in new, surprising ways. 3. Is this made available to all countries or is the main focus Cyprus? Initially, this project has been designed to address the mahallae challenge 'common vision for the future' in Cyprus. Nevertheless, it has the potential to be replicated in a different post conflict context, or in a context with diverse linguistic communities. What we are currently doing is to communicate with different literary associations in the Euro- Mediterranean area, exploring ways to collaborate. 4. Will the stories be sorted into genres for the reader's comfort? That is actually such a good idea! Taking notes! Thank you :) As you mention in the end, a good dissemination strategy is needed so as to attract the right audience which we are more than willing to work towards achieving that!
louiza's picture
Thank you, Maria! We need creative people, join our community!
vatraxaki's picture
Great idea of a project! Looking forward to it! Good luck Louiza!!
Elenadolce's picture
A great idea....I am absolutely positive that it would be a great success.I would love to follow up your effort and participate in your project.Creative writing and art is a combination able to bring people in a path where they can discover their inner self and secret truths.Very good luck and all the
natasa m's picture
Great idea for project! We are ready to contribute and join you!
Vasia Rv's picture
Really nice and innovative idea! I believe in the possibilities that creative writing can give for collaboration, opinion's and view's exchange, and self development. It is said that "An image could be translated with 1000 words". Different perspectives could promote open - minded personalities. Good luck!
Margarita Neokleous's picture
Great Idea!!! Good Luck Luiza!
stellahadji88's picture
Very interesting Louiza! :)
Irene.Fetta's picture
Very interesting and well-organised project. Good luck to all team !
Skevis's picture
tmarkidou's picture
This is a wonderful idea Louiza! Well done. It will be great to see the different genres that are empowered by the pictorial stimulus. I am sure that you will find various cultural associations and meeting places for intercultural dialogue and artistic creation. Just a thought though... The interplay between words and images would be another way you can consider to add to your project. That is, since you are talking about dialogue, you suggest that the two semiotic systems (the written and the visual) contribute equally to the creative "discussion". Thus, you may consider to bring as a stimulus the written text, and see what visual contributions will unfold. I understand that language may considered as a barrier, but perhaps you can clarify that people who want to work in this way may write their text in English. That way you are treating the two means equally, and I am certain that the results will be twice as interesting.. You might stimulate the public of Cyprus to provide authentic, multimodal and creative texts, by deconstructing the written words and try thinking in different ways, so as to re-construct something new and fresh. Hence, your project may provide a novice justification for foregrounding the role of both arts, as means of communication and ways to develop substantial intercultural dialogue.Looking forward hearing your thoughts! All the best!!!
szoumperi's picture
That is a very nice idea and very well-organized. I will the collaborative nature of the project and I think that it is very interesting the fact that you can express yourself in two different modes (visual, written). I think that it would be nice for the users to implement their stories with some relevant music or sort videos. Well done!!! I wish you luck Louiza!
Mantonia's picture
Love your proposal Louiza mou! It's so great to see you taking you research to a whole new level. The idea of using the power of literature and personal storytelling as a means of achieving social change, through such a creative platform, is so amazing! Great work, well done! Good luck to you and your team!
devrim's picture
Bu proje ile yeni ufuklar açılıyor,yılların yapamadığını bir araya gelen sanatçılar yapıyor.Çok tebrik ederim,zaman aşımına uğramadan hayata geçmesini sabırsızlıkla bekliyorum...Görsel anlamda tüm bu sosyal değişimi ben de resimlerimle paylaşmayı istiyorum...Size ve ekibinize kolaylıklar , bol şanslar dilerim...
Danny's picture
Great idea Louiza! Good luck!
Saba's picture
I hope I participate well :) looking forward to it :)
Zus's picture
A great idea to bring together and to share literature from all around the world to open peoples minds and views.
pgkyr's picture
It's a great idea which combines art and creative writing. I believe it will be very successful, because people need to share opinions. The idea is very well developed with long future! Good Luck!
Nefeli's picture
This is indeed a great project that embraces and promotes creativity. Creative writing, illustration and imagination are all intertwined to give lovers of words and artists the opportunity to express themselves and find inspiration all at the same time. Good luck!
Malnic's picture
Hey guys, quite interesting idea I like it! We have to have a talk sometime after this stage of the challenge. Take a look here, we were thinking about a short-story application with some friends (un-related with Mahallae). Also we could cooperate if both concepts pass this stage as we move into similar fields of interest, check our concept too:
Katerinaaa's picture
Louiza, that is a really nice and creative idea. I wish you good luck!!!
aslikonac's picture
This is such a great idea, and something we desperately needed in Cyprus. I love that visuals are used to stimulate narration, this fits our era very well, since we are bombarded with visuals in our everyday lives. The fact that we are used to literature often to be used not to unite us but to promote division has been something that bothered many of us and it is great to see such a project which is easily accessible to people from everywhere, mentioning and challenging this fact. Good luck!
Vicky's picture
Good luck to the project. writing will help unlock our thoughts.
Seda.s's picture
Hi, great idea.Why don't you create a Facebook group while waiting for the approval for funding of the project and share the stories, pictures and like and share them or make comments about them?
Rodoula's picture
I find this idea very well structured. It will contribute to the interaction among people with different language, culture, ethnicity, and even different characters through a pleasant and multidimensional mode of communication. The way in which it is proposed to operate this work will lead effortlessly to an excellent result which will be the very interesting outcomes of this interaction.
POPI's picture
Great ideal. Looking forward for this. GOOD LUCK
anna.christoforou's picture
Good Luck
stratigos's picture
great ideal.good luck louiza mou.
sofi's picture
very good ideal. wish you the best
sofi's picture
good luck
Thanasis's picture
Seems like a useful idea best of luck
nikos's picture
Amazing idea! I wish all the best to your project!!!
nikos's picture
Amazing idea! I wish all the best to your project!!!
louiza's picture
hey Seda! That is a very good idea! Thank you for suggesting! It will be a good testing process and a great way to get things off the ground!
veroiacona's picture
Wow! This is such a nice idea! It's so nice to see that academic researches can lead to something actually fun, entertaining, interactive and dynamic! I studied literature myself and this is definitely not the usual things you see in the "researchers world". Amazing idea, amazing team! The best of lucks!
rrwinbristol's picture
Louiza - good luck with this promising project! I think it could potentially become a powerful collaborative tool for writers and translators alike. The option to translate and comment on translations is something which is actually missing in your project flow chart. However, I think it is very important in order to achieve your goal of overcoming language barriers and of raising intercultural awareness.
xristina's picture
That's an amazing idea!It's so promising for the future to see people who are thinking out of the box!All the best luck!
cmannouris's picture
Terrific project! Congratulations! All the best!
louiza's picture
Thank you, Elena! Let's hope to interesting insights from this path of self discovery!
louiza's picture
Indeed! Thank you, Vasia!
louiza's picture
Hi Tereza! Thank you so much for your valuable & constructive feedback! You are right, the interplay between the words and images is a promising avenue and I appreciate that you mention the limitations, suggesting appropriate ways to deal with them. I am very excited you are on our team so that we can explore together ways to surpass the limitations and challenges that language and translation pose.
missygirl's picture
The idea of providing a venue for potential writers to have an audience for their original stories stimulated by an image and to have others collaborate in creating the story is commendable! Stories will always spark interest in both the young and old alike. And yes, by means of the creative process of telling/writing the story, much is revealed in terms of the culture, values, aspirations, beliefs, experiences and personality of the writer. This ultimately leads to better understanding of people and their world view. Moreover, by enabling others to support the writer through the collaborative effort of improving the story, socialization happens. This can lead to better relationships among people. Congratulations for coming up with this wonderful tool. I have a few questions that you might want to address: what is your target group of writers? in what language are they expected to write the stories? Can it be in any language familiar to them? Will the stories go through a process of editing or would the collaboration be in itself the means to improve the construction of sentences so that they truly represent the thoughts and ideas of the writer.
congratulations from Buenos Aires !! Great ideas deserve many friends all over the world !
Louiza Mallouri is a cross-cultural researcher(PhD, University of Cambridge) and a teacher,...
After working for three years as a primary school teacher, Constantinos is now a lecturer in...
I am an English major with an MA in Children's Literature, I currently work as a teacher,...
I studied English Language and Literature at the University of Cyprus. My interest in literature...
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