The story itself is rather straightforward -- a narrative with a definite linear progression. It takes place in the near future, when it is technologically possible to create artificial memories that can be uploaded into the user's memory.

The narrative is centered around a teenage boy and his mother. The mother is part of the new breed of writers: once a grad student in creative writing at Iowa, she now creates memories for a living.

The teenager is at that uncomfortable stage in his life. He doesn't know who he is, who he should be, who he wants to be, etc. Naturally, he is drawn to artificial memory and its ability to let him try on and test out different personas.

As he experiments with this new technology, and becomes more bitter and angst-ridden (as all normal teenagers do), he finds that regular, legal memories are boring and a waste of his time. He begins buying dangerous, illegal memories on the black market. These memories rarely work and only induce painful headaches.

As his use of the illegal memories increases, he begins experiencing blackouts and dizzy spells. Unconcerned and naive to the dangers of the technology, he continues the use. Artificial memories dominate, merge with, and/or destroy his genuine memories.

(And this is where it gets really hypertextual)