Girl, Interrupted

Before Plain Layne disappeared, readers knew her as a fiery online diarist, an outspoken lesbian, and a beauty straight out of a Midwestern Botticelli. Afterward, they knew her as a hoax.

CP:If I were a literary agent trying to convince you to turn this experience into a book, what would you say?

Soli: Thanks but no thanks. This was an experiment in creative interactive fiction. It was also not solely my work. Many people contributed in their own ways--with comments, with suggestions, with praise, with condemnation--and all of that was important for how that story turned out. My intent in creating this was never to come up with a product that could be turned into a revenue stream or any kind of personal notoriety.

CP:Did you ever think you'd get found out?

Soli: Yeah, you always run that risk. But at this point, I'm most concerned about what could happen. It's like being stalked. People have harassed my family.

CP:But you must have seen people attach themselves to Layne in very personal ways through e-mail and chat. Didn't it occur to you that you were playing with fire?

Soli: I didn't foresee all of this. I was intrigued by the ways you could practice a persona online. That's all. In that sense, maybe I was more naive than everyone who was reading the site.

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