Don’t Google Yourself
Today I want to talk to you about the Creepypasta Anna Petrova. A lovely little pasta that has a go at recreating some classic horror elements in a modern setting.
The story starts with an email.
A person named Bree receives the email from someone they used to be close to but have since fallen out with.
The email contains a wiki page and is begging for help, saying that Bree needs to read the page to understand.
The email reveals that Bree was hurt by the writer in some fashion, and many suspect this was intentional though the writer denies this.
The writer then goes on to refer to a time in the 8th grade, when they were nervous before a competition and so went online where they googled themselves. They found a wiki page about themselves. This wiki page revealed that they would win the competition the next day. This came to pass. The email continues stating that this happened many more times. The wiki page effectively told the future.
They came under enormous pressure from their coach and parents to be the best they could be and so they went in and edited the page themselves. However, the update did not work and instead, the page changed to be threatening. That was when the accident happened with Bree and everyone blamed the writer.
The page continued to get worse until eventually, it predicted the death of the writer’s parents. The writer tried to call their parents to warn them but when the calls were picked up it was not her parents but a mocking laugh.
Her parents died in an accident.
After turning 18 the writer left the country and reinvented themselves. Things started to go well. They checked the page prior to an audition only to find the page stating that she would die today.
This email is an attempt to tell someone else the truth of what has happened to her.
That’s how the story ends, with her stating she kept refreshing the page, hoping it will change.
My Thoughts – General
Overall, I really liked this creepy pasta, its simple and effective.
The email being a narrative tool, or framing device, to tell the audience a story is an interesting aspect. But it results in the writer telling Bree things Bree would already know so feels a bit stiff in places.
My Thoughts – Characters
There’s not much to say about the characters as we don’t really meet them in the story. We don’t know who Bree is beyond a fellow figure skater who had an unpleasant accident during a competition. We don’t even know that much about the writer, other than they feel hard done by due to the accusations levied against them.
I think the main character in this story, or at least the main focus is the wiki page. The concept of a web page that tells the future. At least that’s how the pasta made me feel.
My Thoughts – Plot
With regard to the plot, the story is told in past tense, the writer telling Bree what happened to them both. There is also no real payoff as because of the email framing device we never find out what happened to the writer. Though it is hinted that she died as the email ends.
Overall, it is a little bit predictable, but that also works in its favour. As if you found a wiki page that told your future wouldn’t you be tempted to edit it to make things go well? It makes the writer a relatable person.
Overall, the plot put me in mind of old morality tales and stories like the Monkeys Paw. You have something that can give you something amazing but if its abused (or in the case of the monkey’s paw, used at all) then the consequences are sever. I was a big fan that this story tried to recreate that type of horror atmosphere, though I do feel it misses its mark a little, it is still a good story.
I really enjoyed that the writer attempted to change the prediction of the page when it predicted her parents’ deaths only to be prevented. It raises the stakes and gives the story a feeling of hopelessness. This again reinforced the call backs to classic horror where once the protagonist acts poorly, or against moral standing, and triggers the consequences there is nothing that can be done to stop them as the protagonist must be punished.
My Thoughts – Theme
The main theme I picked up from this is the morality tale feel. Where the protagonist acts against moral standing, in this case she tries to cheat and change her fate, only to suffer extreme consequences.
The story taps into societal tensions, looking at both the pressure put on children (in this case child athletes), and the accusations against the protagonist which she vehemently denies but suffers for despite this. There is also the fear of the page itself, which could easily count as a monster as it seems to have a very vindictive soul.
Lastly, the atmosphere of the story is one of terror, a well built and then sustained terror. The only downside is that we don’t know 100% what happens to Anna. A second email or correspondence, perhaps from Bree to another person talking about the email she received from Anna saying that Anna had been found dead after sending it, and discussing the cursed page, perhaps hinting that tone of them or both of them might have found or go looking for a page of their own. This in my opinion would have been a stronger ending rather than leaving it ambiguous.
Overall, I would say this is a great little story and well worth your time to read.