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Department of Languages and Literatures

UNI Students Write "The World of Kurt Vonnegut"

Posted on Saturday, January 18th, 2014

Vonnegut's WorldUNI student writers are publishing parallel stories (a.k.a. “fan fiction”) for Amazon Kindle’s “World of Kurt Vonnegut.” Click here for more information.



Last semester, as part of Professor Jim O’Loughlin’s Craft of Fiction course in the Department of Languages & Literatures, students read novels by noted author Kurt Vonnegut and then wrote their own stories making use of the characters and details from Vonnegut’s books.

“This was a valuable exercise for gaining an appreciation of an author’s style and the many decisions that go into a work of fiction,” said O’Loughlin, “It was a bonus that there is a mechanism now for publishing these stories legally, and mastering the process of electronic publication is an important skill to acquire for anyone who desires to be a writer.”’s “World of Kurt Vonnegut” started in August when an agreement was reached with the estate of Kurt Vonnegut to allow writers to use copyrighted elements of Vonnegut’s work for stories exclusively published for the Kindle. 

All students in the Fall 2013 Craft of Fiction class read either Kurt Vonnegut’s Slaughterhouse-Five or God Bless You, Mr. Rosewater and then took on the task of writing a parallel story. Students then had the option of revising and publishing their stories as part of the “World of Kurt Vonnegut.” Currently, four students have published their fiction, all of which reached the best-seller spot in the Kindle World – Contemporary category.

“It’s been great that students have been able to publish and share these stories,” said O’Loughlin, “And I take particular pleasure when one of the stories from the class knocks a Vampire Diaries fan fiction story out of the top slot.”

“The World of Kurt Vonnegut” is one of a dozen fictional worlds that are part of the Kindle program. Other texts as part of the series tend to be less literary, including The Vampire Diaries and Gossip Girl. Stories as part of this project can be purchased for $0.99 and read on a Kindle or Kindle-capable device (such as an iPhone). There is also a Kindle cloud reader that can be used on any computer browser.


Stories published as part of this project include:

Amanda Arp's "The Golden Tree"

Jordan Beardsley's "Missing Piece"

Amanda Blanche’s “The Flibbertigibbit’s Truth” 

Carter Brown’s “Messiah”

Megan Gregorsak’s “Her Father Believed in Aliens Shaped Like Plungers” (with original cover art)

Jim O'Loughlin’s "What Valencia Knew

Brian Pals’s "Unmanned, or the Passion of Frenchie"