Stagg’s slim novel deftly explores the shifting landscape of celebrity through the story of a young woman’s rise from obscurity to Internet stardom—the ‘low numbers’ to the ‘high ones’—after an online flirtation with a semifamous social media personality.—New York Times Book Review—
Stagg is a fearless writer, and she plays with stream of consciousness diatribes and obsessive inner thoughts to create a compelling and addictive story that explores contemporary understandings of jealousy and love through social media.
Bored of her life working in a Tucson, Arizona, mall, 23-year-old Colleen takes the life-changing plunge that so many millennials often consider—becoming an internet celebrity. Colleen posts updates about her life online, gaining followers and forming a double life teetering between young adult normalcy and the uncanny phenomenon of being sort of, kind of famous on the internet. The coming-of-age story offers a psychological dissection of the logic behind sharing your every thought with a mass of anonymous strangers, exploring the strange terrain where the personal and performative overlap and bleed into one another. Without altogether celebrating or condemning the contemporary obsession with online sharing, Stagg explores the roles we play and the selves we inhabit, online and IRL.
I had never read a good piece of fiction that featured internet culture as a predominant part of its plot until I read Surveys.