Megawatt Cover

Megawatt is based on passages from Samuel Beckett’s novel Watt, first published in 1953 but written much earlier, when Beckett was aiding the French Resistance during World War II. The novel Megawatt leaves aside all of the more intelligible language of Beckett’s novel and is based, instead, on that which is most systematic and inscrutable. It does not just recreate these passages, although with minor changes the Megawatt code can be used to do so. In the new novel, rather, they are intensified by generating, using the same methods that Beckett used, significantly more text than is found in the already excessive Watt. The novel concludes with a listing of the code that was used to generate it.


Megawatt was written/generated for the second NaNoGenMo (National Novel Generation Month) in November 2014. The 350-line program is free software, and generates a novel deterministically: Each time it is run, the same novel will result.

(Source: Harvard Book Store)


Nick Montfort: Megawatt
252 pages, 8,25 x 5,5 in
Bad Quarto, Cambridge, MA, 2014


Megawatt Source Code