What is Empty Spaces?
The problem with this question is that any answer to it narrows down what Empty Spaces (ES for short) can be. The problem with that explanation is that it's highly unsatisfying, doesn't help anyone understand anything, and might feel kind of gatekeepy. As such, it is imperative to keep in mind that Empty Spaces is defined by being undefined. Any common trends that you see in the works that people make are just that, trends. Any individual trope or archetype is free to be redefined author to author and even story to story within the same author's collected body of works. Do not take anything written here as a definition, so much as my interpretation of some general themes.
Empty Spaces explores themes of trauma, sex, sexuality, gender, abuse, and neurodivergence (and plenty of others) through fantasy/sci-fi archetypes and symbols including. Some of these archetypes include, but are not limited to, dolls, witches, moths, angels, demons, and drones as well as concepts such as Purpose and Stillness. It mostly exists via a loose collection of writers on Twitter who compose microfiction, though it can take whatever form you desire. The common refrain among people in ES is that, "If it vibes with you, then it's for you." There is no "you must be this traumatized to enjoy ES" benchmark.
If you'd like to learn more about Empty Spaces, then in my opinion, the best way is to read other author's works and arrive at your own ideas based on your personal experiences. To that end, here are some useful links to get started.
- An incomplete directory of Empty Spaces authors and their various socials/websites maintained by one of the largest contributors to ES
- A thread on "What is Empty Spaces?" from that same creator
- A collection of some "best-of" writings, so you can get a feel for the space and maybe find authors you particularly vibe with
- The ES "dictionary." This dictionary offers a randomized collection of vibes, answers, and non-answers to what many of the common ES archetypes are. It is often self-contradictory. This is part of the point
- And some of my personal favorite authors (socials in order of activity frequency):
Wintergreen Sacred Machine Ysoldol DividedIntoOne DollVerity