My fantastic critique buddy, Nicola Layouni, posted a wonderful
method of procrastination for writers tearing their hair out with revisions tool for writers.
Using the “I write like analyzer” and pasting some pages of her text in the text box, Nicola discovered that she wrote like James Joyce. Pretty nice compliment, right?
Since I’m right in the middle of major edits now and looking for any distraction that comes my way, I thought I’d give it a shot, too.
I pasted in the first chapter of my manuscript In the Shadow of the Apennines and out spewed George Orwell. Fantastic, I love Orwell. Who doesn’t? I don’t think I write anything like him, but hey, my ego is happy.
So then I paste in the first chapter of my second manuscript, Dark Blue Waves, and out comes the name of Charles Dickens. Um, okay. This is a novel that takes place partly in the 19th century, so I’m willing to play along.
Three short stories later finds me writing like David Foster Wallace, Mario Puzo, and Neil Gaiman. My children would be thrilled with the latter, because they love his children’s book Coraline (as do I).
But, you may have noticed that these are all – er, ehm – authors with rather different styles. And while I’d love to flatter myself that every time I sit down to write a new piece, I invent an entirely new writing style, I can’t help but think this analyzer is a little like the old tests they did with monkeys throwing arrows at the stock listings (and often outperforming professional indexers).
Agents beware. I’ll start querying myself as the new Orwell/Dickens/Foster Wallace/Puzo/Gaiman, all rolled into one (female) package.
Or perhaps I should bite the bullet and just get back to revisions.
But that, dear readers, does not mean that you should miss out on all the entertainment. Here it is, for hours of
Maybe you’ll discover that you write like Dante/Stephen King/Shakespeare/Dan Brown/Tolstoy/Danielle Steele. Have fun!