Eric R. Williams
|Alma mater||Columbia University|
|Occupation||Professor and new media storyteller|
|The Triangle of Knowledge|
Eric R. Williams is a professor and new media storyteller. He is known for developing alternative ways to conceptualize and practice narrative and documentary techniques in the modern digital age.
Williams co-developed the concept of PRE-ality while working with emergency room doctors and physical therapists. PRE-ality (a portmanteau combining “prepare” and “reality”) uses virtual reality cinema to evoke an erroneous sense of déjà vu in the viewer to better prepare them for a reality they have yet to visit. This discovery led to the implementation of a first-of-its-kind virtual reality training experience for healthcare education.
Williams' narrative research emphasizes collaboration between storytellers and their audience. Williams developed two unique concepts – the triangle of knowledge and the screenwriters taxonomy – over the course of ten years, publishing books about both in 2017. The following year, Williams co-wrote and co-directed a feature-length narrative virtual reality project. The project has since been proven to increase cultural self-efficacy in the audience. Williams subsequently co-wrote a book explaining ways to use virtual reality cinema (cine-VR) to engage and influence the audience.
Education and Career
Williams earned his MFA in Film from Columbia University, directing the feature film Snakes and Arrows as his thesis. He later wrote a Columbo made-for-TV movie for Universal Studios and developed a pilot program for American Movie Classics called Don’t Try This At Home. By 2010, Williams had co-directed and co-produced two documentary television series (Redefining Appalachia and Guyana Pepperpot) as well as the documentary Breaking News (featuring Dianne Rehm, Walter Cronkite and Terry Anderson).
Starting in 2016, Williams began developing his virtual reality cinema techniques working at Ohio University’s Game Research and Immersive Design (GRID) Lab, where he continues to collaborate on a wide variety to non-fiction and narrative-based projects.
Williams has written four books and three audiobooks on both traditional and new media storytelling:
- Media and the Creative Process (Cognella, 2014)
- Screen Adaptation: Beyond the Basics (Focal Press, 2017)
- The Screenwriters Taxonomy (Routledge, 2017)
- How to View and Appreciate Great Movies (Great Courses, 2018)
- Falling in Love with Romance Films (Audible Original, 2019)
- TV's New Golden Age (Audible Original, 2021)
- Virtual Reality Cinema: Narrative Tips and Techniques (Routledge, 2021)
- Dancyger, Ken (2019). Storytelling for Film and Television : From First Word to Last Frame. Milton: Routledge. pp. (back cover). ISBN 978-1-351-24597-5. OCLC 1100010668.
- Johnson, Claudia; Stevens, Matt (2016). Script partners : how to succeed at co-writing for film & TV (Second ed.). New York: Routledge. pp. 21–23. ISBN 978-1-317-41792-7. OCLC 945975333.
- Bucher, John K. (2017). Storytelling for virtual reality : methods and principles for crafting immersive narratives. New York, NY: Routledge. pp. viii–ix. ISBN 978-1-138-62965-3. OCLC 975466706.
- Binstock, Yoni. (2018). What is Virtual Reality?: Everything You Wanted to Know Featuring Exclusive Interviews With the Leaders of the VR Industry. (pages 46-50) Amazon/Kindle.
- Goldberg, Duncan, and Josh Gregory. (April 6, 2018). "OU Pioneering New Uses of Virtual Reality". WOUB Public Media. Retrieved September 21, 2020.
- NAU News (June 5, 2017). "A 360-Degree Lifesaving View: NAU Professor Brings Actual Health Care Situations to Virtual Reality". Northern Arizona University. Retrieved September 21, 2020.
- Viviano, Joanne (March 26, 2017). "Ohio Doctors Employ Virtual Reality to Train for Trauma Care". U.S. News & World Report. Retrieved September 12, 2020.
- Williams, Eric R. (2017). Screen Adaptation : Beyond the Basics. New York: Focal Press. ISBN 978-1-315-66941-0. OCLC 986993829.
- Williams, Eric R. (2017). The Screenwriters Taxonomy : a Roadmap to Collaborative Storytelling. New York, NY: Routledge. ISBN 978-1-315-10864-3. OCLC 993983488.
- OHIO News staff reporter (June 19, 2019). "Interdisciplinary team creates virtual reality series to train health care providers in Appalachia". Ohio University News. Retrieved September 12, 2020.
- Beverly, Elizabeth (August 20, 2020). "Virtual Reality Improves Healthcare Providers' and Administrators' Cultural Self-Efficacy and Diabetes Attitudes in Appalachian Ohio". Journal of Medical Internet Research (JMIR) – via JMIR Publications.
- Williams, Eric R.; Love, Carrie; Love, Matt (2021). Virtual Reality Cinema : Narrative Tips and Techniques. [S.l.]: Routledge. ISBN 978-0-367-46340-3. OCLC 1193121571.
- Hsu, Melinda (March 2, 1998). "DIY Filmmaker: Eric Williams' 'Snakes & Arrows'". Film Threat Magazine.
- IMDB. "Writer/Director Eric R. Williams". Independent Movie Database. Retrieved September 12, 2020.
- Berlin, Claire (March 17, 2016). "Scripps College of Communication Awarded $878,000 for Immersive Media Initiative". WOUB Public Media. Retrieved September 12, 2020.
- Amazon Author Bio (2020). "Books By Eric R. Williams". Amazon.com.