Thoughts: I Write Like – a robot to judge who you write like!

Yesterday a program called “I Write like” came to my attention through a fellow blogger Three Hundred and Sixty Five called Poetic Justice, so I said, “Wow!  I’d like to try that out!”

I did so immediately with my little faery tale “The Mirror”  the silly program gave me a turn!  Alas it said I wrote like Anne Rice!  Now to my mind, Anne Rice writes about vampires and that sort of thing, and after reading one of her books, I said, “Yep, ok!” without much enthusiasm.  So to me it seems shocking that I should write like Anne Rice!

So, I said…well, let’s try the poem I wrote this morning, the palindrome, ” Padova Market“.  “I want to see if it comes up with Anne Rice now!”  In fact, shades of the “Flotsam and Jetsam”! It said I wrote like James Joyce!

So, I told Franci that I would have to write a post on this strange internet program…and to do so, I took one of my original pieces…a post entitled: “Remembering 1954-1955“. Why? Well, easily answered, one of the persons who commented the post said: “A new, modern, american Marcel Proust Very nice!”  so a human actually wished to inform me that I write like Marcel Proust, at least there anyway.

I copied and pasted the thing here: I Write Like and guess what! The program says and she shivers as she writes this: I write like Stephen King!!!!

And so, I said…I will feed it my most intimate poem, the un-edited poem I wrote for We Drink Because We Are Poets:  Odyssey of Fear to see what it would say.  Well, my friends, at least one thing is for sure…it recognized something Italian about me, for it says I write like Mario Puzo.

Oh well…guess the inventors of this program have a little more studying to do…of course it’s a site links you to Amazon once you get the name of the author you write like, it also has an offer to help you become a better writer:

Short Story Writing: A Practical Treatise on the Art of the Short Story By Charles Raymond Barrett, Ph. B.

To tell you the truth, I think I’d prefer to go through life writing like Georgia…

Anyone have a thought or two to share?

13 thoughts on “Thoughts: I Write Like – a robot to judge who you write like!

  1. Thanks for the shout out. In the end, it is best to write like ourselves, I think. To find our own voice and make the most of it. But it was fun to play for a while.

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  2. Definitely sounds like it’s for entertainment value only. Hell, I would hate to think that after trying to find my own unique voice and style that the program would tell me that I write like James Patterson who seems to need someone to write a book he can slap his name on and call it his own. (Oh dear, did Cranky really say that?)

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  3. Well, I was going to write a decent reply but damned if I can’t find the articles I was looking for to use as references. So I’ll just leave this response as a brief note.

    Yes, the analysis is severely circumspect when it’s tired into a retail outlet that says ‘you write like XXX”. Like any online horoscope or using a Magic 8 Ball.

    What is known is that this concept of style identifying is used in law enforcement (and others) to identify you. If you have a blog/site that is under a different name but the same person is writing, a good program will be able to match your styles together with a pretty good chance of identifying that it’s the same person. Writing styles are subconscious and rarely change just because you have a different domain name.

    Sometimes such analysis creeps me out.

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    • My first computer was a TRS-80 and it came with a cassette run program that wrote stories for you. I guess it has a minimum amount of grammer and words…sometimes it came up with some weird stories, but stories they were. Would this program work something like that…it seems just about as “sophisticated”. Like you have a sentence structure or words used by another author and it pops, because it pops, off a comparison. I think that if it worked like a real style matching program used to identfy someone, then it would probably take a little longer. Thanks for this great comment! You’ve certainly given me food for thought!

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