In many ways, I feel that Memory, Inc. is a personal reaction to Patchwork Girl. A literal approach to the wonderfully poetic and profound definition of identity, or perhaps non-identity, that acts to stitch together Jackson's piece.
Throughout Patchwork Girl, I, as a reader, am filled with a sense of the inherent multivocal nature of the author. Although it may not be fair to make such assumptions about Shelley Jackson, it seems to me that from Professor Landow's description of her own self-portrait, in which the image of herself has been divided into nine or so pieces, and randomly reorganized, this hypertext is as much a search for one's self as it is a creative work.
In any case, whether it be the author's or rather an unnamed narrator's struggle to realize her identity, Jackson's conclusion is a brilliant one: once-perceived concrete borders surrounding the self are crumbling. We are a jumble of distinctly different, often contradictory, always conflicting parts. Just as Shelley's monster represents the literal fusion of a multitude of different personalities, histories, and voices, we are the haphazard sum of our parts."I hop from stone to stone and an electronic river washes out my scent in the intervals. I am a discontinuous trace, a dotted line."
Perhaps this excerpt best defines the manner in which Memory, Inc. is a reaction to Jackson's work. In an effort to define himself, the struggling teenager hops from one memory to the next, briefly assuming one identity, only to discard it for the next.