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branchwag
01-03-2011, 10:48 AM
I was blog-surfing and came across this site (http://iwl.me/) which I thought was rather interesting. It takes your writing (I pasted in the first chapter of my WIP) and finds what famous writer you write most like. I ended up getting Dan Brown, which I hope is true. xD Would anyone else like to try and how accurate do you think this thing is? And, while we're on the topic, has anyone ever told you that you write like someone else? If so, who? Did you think it was true?

krissybrady
01-03-2011, 10:54 AM
What a fun website! I pasted chapter 1 of my novel into their form, and I apparently write like Stephenie Meyer, which is funny, since I haven't read any of her books, lol! I have a big "Need To Read" list for 2011, so I'd better add her titles. :)

RobJ
01-03-2011, 11:24 AM
I tried three different short stories of mine and got:



Annie Rice
Isaac Asimov
Ernest Hemingway


Now I'm wondering. If any of those three authors (if they hadn't already croaked) dropped one of their stories into this web page, would it have burped and told them that they write like me?

Oh, and the funny thing ... or not ... that last story I put in was entitled Hemingway's Ashtray and it came up with the great man himself.

On the positive side, at least two of them wrote some wonderful short stories.

I also pasted in a draft novel chapter and got:



Raymond Chandler


How about that? Most of the people I write like have been pushing up daisies for years. Maybe I need to inject more life into my writing?

That novel chapter, I'm going to come back and try it again when it's been edited and revised, if it makes the cut.

backslashbaby
01-03-2011, 11:48 AM
Stephen King. So I'm Getrude Stein (from the other one) mixed with Stephen King :) :) That's a combo!

RobJ
01-03-2011, 01:55 PM
Stephen King. So I'm Getrude Stein (from the other one) mixed with Stephen King :) :) That's a combo!
Stein died before King was born, so we can probably rule out your being their secret love child, given up for adoption at birth. But if they'd had one ...

BigWords
01-03-2011, 07:33 PM
It's not even close to being an accurate gauge of your work Read this (http://nielsenhayden.com/makinglight/archives/012502.html).

Cyia
01-03-2011, 07:35 PM
I'd love to see a blog post from one of the authors used as a result on this thing saying what results they got if they put in an unpublished snip. I'd bet neither JK Rowling nor Neil Gaiman get themselves as their match.

milly
01-03-2011, 07:36 PM
Charles Baxter :)

(I wish...hehe)

KyraDune
01-03-2011, 07:48 PM
An editor once told me one of my short stories reminded him of H.P. Lovecraft.

Greenify13
01-03-2011, 08:10 PM
:ROFL:

"Annie" Rice and Arthur Clarke. Intersting, however I wasn't planning to put any stock in this even before seeing BigWords post, why would I? It's Anne Rice, fool.

:ROFL:

I put in the first page of a business plan and got H.P. Lovecraft...oh the horrors, the horrors...What was I thinking? :ROFL:

Though, I must say, these things can be fun...:D

citymouse
01-03-2011, 08:15 PM
I got tagged with Mario Puzo, Stephen King and H.G. Wells.
If this is thing is accurate, why aren't I famous?
Many years ago an archbishop told me he thought I was going places. Oddly, he didn't say in which direction!
C

Jamesaritchie
01-03-2011, 08:15 PM
Didn't we just do a long thread about this site?

RobJ
01-03-2011, 08:23 PM
It's not even close to being an accurate gauge of your work Read this (http://nielsenhayden.com/makinglight/archives/012502.html).
Oh, that's a shame. I'd better phone my mother back.

Nivarion
01-03-2011, 09:48 PM
I tried with the first page, a middle page and the most recent page of my current rough draft.

I got Margette Mitchell on all three. Interesting.

Ken
01-03-2011, 10:11 PM
... wonder if any writers have made mention, when sub'ing to publishers?
"Dear Editor: You should publish my novel. According to a website I write like Stephen King!"

branchwag
01-04-2011, 12:18 AM
Lol! xD I really hope that someone doesn't do that. I posted in a short story of mine and got a different result the second time of James Joyce. Seeing that this thing doesn't take voice and plot into account, I'd say it's not accurate now, but it's fun to paste little tidbits in. ;)

rainsmom
01-04-2011, 03:20 AM
Jane Austen

(I wish!)

Stijn Hommes
01-04-2011, 03:39 AM
I pasted my published flash and my second place-winning entry in an "On the Premises" mini-contest and got Cory Doctorow for both of them. I'm not sure how many different results are possible, but two hits on the same author is just plain weird.

Another unpublished short story yielded Chuck Palahniuk as the result. The opening paragraphs of a historical mystery WIP resulted in Shakespeare.

I've never read Palahniuk, but if the comments I heard about are anything to go by, I like these results. I also wonder if I'll get another Doctorow judgement if I finish and polish those unpublished manuscripts.

Lady Cat
01-04-2011, 10:54 PM
I pasted in some of my erotica and got Stephen King. ;)

Lyra Jean
01-04-2011, 11:08 PM
I got Arthur Clarke for the three chapters of my rough draft I put in.

I put in my secret santa SF short story and it said Jane Austen.

I pasted in a published short story and it said Cory Doctorow.

Rebekah7
01-04-2011, 11:40 PM
I decided to enter my horror WIP into the box:

I got Annie Rice (I guess that's what people call Anne rice after a few drinks. "Hey Annie!") for the first part of my WIP.

I got Kurt Vonnegut for the second part.

And I got Rudyard Kipling for both parts combined, and for the whole WIP.

Chris P
01-05-2011, 12:00 AM
It's not even close to being an accurate gauge of your work Read this (http://nielsenhayden.com/makinglight/archives/012502.html).

I wasn't aware anyone took that site seriously. I tried it for S&G (s**ts and giggles), knowing that I write like the authors I read and admire the most.

Jim's rundown of the site in your link is helpful. "Follow the money" is as true today as it was in Watergate's time.

krissybrady
01-05-2011, 02:14 PM
Yes, it is a fun little site. We work so hard, we deserve some amusement every now and then. :)

BigWords
01-06-2011, 12:29 PM
I wasn't aware anyone took that site seriously.

Most people will approach something like that with the right mindset, though there are always those who would accept, without question, the results they are given. It's better to explicitly make people aware of the deficiencies of something such as Who Do You Write Like than hope for common sense to be employed across all users.

Some poor sap, at this very moment, will be under the illusion that they are in possession of the greatest manuscript on the last decade thanks to the way the site encourages participants to view their work. I was erring on the side of caution by bringing the motivation of the site's creators to light.

The Grump
01-06-2011, 09:35 PM
I'm schizoid. Who I write like depends on the various passages I've submitted. I don't think any two were alike. At least, I think I'm original.

Margarita Skies
01-06-2011, 09:59 PM
I did that early last year when I had just arrived to these boards and I got Isaac Asimov on both of my stories. I have to look up some of his work because that was the first time IŽd heard of him. Ok, you can throw rotten tomatoes at me now. :ROFL:

Phaeal
01-06-2011, 10:15 PM
What none of you seem to realize is that this site is just a front for an alien publishing firm that steals your excerpts and publishes them (minus any payment or royalties to you) in wildly popular Human Lit anthologies.

I think they're based in Mos Eisley.

BardSkye
01-06-2011, 11:29 PM
Aack! My mystery was written by Stephen King and my historical by Jonathon Swift.

I really dislike both those writers.

Kishi_Keahi
01-14-2011, 07:34 AM
I got Kurt Vonnegut, which is interesting because i thought of writing one of my stories like Slaughter House Five...but it wasnt the one i put into the blank.

Searching
01-14-2011, 02:58 PM
Two different samples from my short story and for both I got David Foster Wallace. Fun little website.

jonbon.benjamin
01-15-2011, 07:14 PM
hmmmmmm, i got Stephanie Meyer. Not sure that is a good thing

I haven't read the Twilight books, but I have met few who don't find them annoying. Maybe i should read them. For research reasons only, of course

JB

Interesting though, i just tried it with my entire First draft (which is very rough around the edges to say the least) and it says I write like Gertrude Stein.

RobJ
01-15-2011, 07:44 PM
hmmmmmm, i got Stephanie Meyer. Not sure that is a good thing

I haven't read the Twilight books, but I have met few who don't find them annoying. Maybe i should read them. For research reasons only, of course

JB

Interesting though, i just tried it with my entire First draft (which is very rough around the edges to say the least) and it says I write like Gertrude Stein.
Stein. Meyer. I've heard they're very similar.

AiryBri
01-16-2011, 04:35 AM
Apparently I write like Annie Rice. ummmm right.

Well anyways, I don't think I write much like a specific other author. I don't feel like I've developed my narrative voice enough to make a comparison.
(http://iwl.me/w/11eeceb9)

Reziac
02-15-2011, 12:11 AM
Two different samples from my short story and for both I got David Foster Wallace. Fun little website.

I input a sample from CJ Cherryh and got this David Foster Wallace dude back. (Never heard of him.)

I input myself and got "Arthur Clark" <sic>. (I hope not.)

So I scrounged up some genuine Clarke and input that. Several different fragments. All came back correctly ID'd. I deduced that this just does pattern matching to a collection of known text.

I pulled some random text off the site itself and input that. Back came some other random famous author's name (which I've already forgotten).

Dang... the only possible conclusion is that we're ALL great writers, but very few of us write like ourselves!! :D

McTheebs
02-15-2011, 12:30 AM
2 Chuck Palahniuks and a William Gibson.

Which is interesting, because I don't consider either to be major influences of mine.

Sydewinder
02-18-2011, 01:23 AM
I pasted the same excerpt three times and got three different answers. LOL

RobJ
02-18-2011, 01:32 AM
I pasted in my tiny piece of fiction from SYW and it told me I write like Stephen King.

Never heard of him.

Reziac
02-18-2011, 02:10 AM
I pasted in my tiny piece of fiction from SYW and it told me I write like Stephen King.

Never heard of him.

He's that bloke who writes like RobJ. :D

Christyp
10-20-2011, 05:21 AM
I got Cory Doctorow...I haven't actually read anything by him.

Hiroko
10-20-2011, 09:29 AM
I'll be posting the little thing on my blog before long. :tongue Ahem, the first time I used it, I got Isaac Asimov (whose work I do enjoy) maybe because I write science fiction. Every other time I've done it, though, I've gotten James Joyce (again, not disappointing).

Dr.Gonzo
10-20-2011, 10:40 AM
Tried three:

Chuck Palahniuk
David Foster Wallace
Kurt Vonnegut

I can live with that. Unfortunately, it's bullshit. In short, no one be too upset if you get Dan Brown.

Archerbird
10-20-2011, 10:58 AM
I write like Ray Bradbury and Charles Dickens! :D

What the doctor said though. ^

SPMiller
10-20-2011, 11:04 AM
According to this...

- Roger Zelazny writes like Ursula K Le Guin in "The Engine at Heartspring's Center".
- Cormac McCarthy writes like William Gibson in THE ROAD.
- Samuel R Delany writes like Anne Rice in DHALGREN.
- Alice Sheldon writes like David Foster Wallace in "Love is the Plan the Plan is Death".

It tells me my most recent work is like William Gibson's.

Tepelus
10-20-2011, 03:29 PM
I put in the chapter I finished last night (first draft, btw), and it said Douglas Adams. I've never read his stuff because I don't read SF, but neither do I write it. My WIP is Historical Fantasy, so I don't get this one. Something I wrote must have sparked something in their program to say Douglas Adams. Oh well, it's just a fun little thing to do every now and again.

heza
10-21-2011, 01:36 AM
You'll be relieved to know that the prose for my children's book reads like Kurt Vonnegut, but my grocery list reads like Margaret Atwood.

stormie
10-21-2011, 02:07 AM
It's so accurate that it took my four paragraph piece of a ms. that has humor mixed with the word "die" and told me I write like Stephen King.

I better tell Mr.King to watch out--I'm gonna take over his title as King of Horror.

SPMiller
10-21-2011, 02:13 AM
I looked at the source to see how it was working, and it takes a Bayesian probabilistic approach with sample corpora (written by the "famous writers" in question) to fuel a data-driven algorithm that determines which writer's texts your sample is most like. It rejects no texts (of at least a minimum size), so anything you put in will be found to be most like something.

Rise2theTop
10-21-2011, 03:39 AM
Um...no matter what I put in~ dialog, narrative, chapter 1, chapter 10, 20... Past, present, future works--I come up with the same style as J. D. Salinger. (http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=rdr_ext_aut?_encoding=UTF8&index=books&field-author=J.%20D.%20Salinger)
Man, I don't know if it's a good thing or not! I guess, what I can take away from this, is my consistency is good? FTFOM! WOW...eye opener for sure, and I think, think, I'm happy...

Williebee
10-21-2011, 03:45 AM
Elliot Petersmythe Tsing. You wouldn't know her, but man, she was amazing!

SPMiller
10-21-2011, 06:07 AM
Um...no matter what I put in~ dialog, narrative, chapter 1, chapter 10, 20... Past, present, future works--I come up with the same style as J. D. Salinger. (http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=rdr_ext_aut?_encoding=UTF8&index=books&field-author=J.%20D.%20Salinger)
Man, I don't know if it's a good thing or not! I guess, what I can take away from this, is my consistency is good? FTFOM! WOW...eye opener for sure, and I think, think, I'm happy...Speaking only for myself, I completely change both my voice and my style in every story I write, so my results vary greatly with this site, as I expected. It's a fairly decent program, though it could, like all programs, be better.

Libbie
10-21-2011, 08:32 AM
Would anyone else like to try and how accurate do you think this thing is?

I tried this once with a bit from a different book I wrote, and it said I wrote most like Stephen King. I couldn't have disagreed more.

I tried it with my current WIP and it gave me Arthur C. Clark. Much more flattering, in my opinion, but I don't see the similarities. Maybe in my liberal use of colons and semicolons, but that's about it.


And, while we're on the topic, has anyone ever told you that you write like someone else? If so, who? Did you think it was true?I very humbly admit, and only because you asked ten months ago, that many people have told me my writing reminds them of Vladimir Nabokov's, "in a good way," which I guess means that they can see the influence without it looking like I'm actually trying to write like him. Since I've heard this now from several different people who had no special reason to flatter me, I have to assume that there is some kind of similarity there, although I will never ever ever be as good as he was, if I live to be a hundred and seven and write every day of my life. Nobody can touch His Nabs; certainly not this humble, uneducated, backcountry-raised scribbler.

Do I think it's true? Well, I do read a ton of Nabokov, so I'm sure my love for his style permeates my own writing to some noticeable degree. I feel very fortunate that the same people also were quick to assure me (without prompting, thank god) that I do have a distinctive style of my own, so I hope I can be secure in feeling that I am finding my own, admittedly Nabokov-influenced voice and not trying to knock off a master's work.

Personally, I think there's just as much Fitzgerald and Bradbury and Oates in my style, but nobody has remarked on that. So who knows.

I know I don't write like Stephen King, though. And I doubt I write all that much like Artie Clark.

CrastersBabies
10-21-2011, 07:50 PM
So, I put in an exposition piece and I got James Joyce.
I put in a string of dialogue and got Dan Brown (ouch).
I put in a mixture of both and got Rudyard Kipling.

Now..... James Joyce is my literary nemesis (along with Henry James), Dan Brown is just insulting (the only thing that would be worse is that Meyer Twilight chick) and Rudyard Kipling is just a big WTF. :)

I agree that this is totally bogus, but still very fun. Thanks for sharing the link!

Drachen Jager
10-21-2011, 10:32 PM
Apparently I write like Dan Brown. Though I don't really get it. I submitted three samples of writing, the two from my current novel came up "Dan Brown" and my current short project was "William Gibson".

Honestly I prefer the Gibson comparison, but as long as I can sell like Dan Brown I'd be happy with that. :)

Drachen Jager
10-21-2011, 10:42 PM
The first act of Hamlet is apparently like William Shakespeare, and Chapter 20 of Huckleberry Finn is written like Mark Twain, so I guess it's pretty accurate.

JessicaJoy
10-22-2011, 06:57 AM
Lol! This is awesome, I got Stephen King for my first story, J. R. R. Tolkien for the second, and Chuck Palahniuk on the third. I think my writing style must be all over the place!

JessicaJoy
10-22-2011, 07:04 AM
Oh my gosh! I wrote " Hi there, my name is jessica bradham and I just want to know what you'll do with this. It's not really a story, nor is it a blog, this is just me writing random nonsense. I'm 23 years old and I actually had to check to know for sure, which is kind of pathetic. My friend used this too and got some interesting results. "

and got

I write like
Stephenie Meyer (http://iwl.me/w/85a62134)

Hehehe apparently my random nonsense is written like a current best selling author's! I laughed so hard :) Poor Stephanie Meyer!

BotByte
10-22-2011, 07:25 AM
I write like me.

Somewhere between Gen Urobuchi (meh) and Dean Kootz (without the dictionary of vocab)

Epic, with subtle scenes that make you lean back and go "holy..."

For years I focused on my own writing style, developing my personal writing. I've never tried to copy anyone also.

BotByte
10-22-2011, 07:27 AM
I write like
Stephenie Meyer (http://iwl.me/w/85a62134)

Hehehe apparently my random nonsense is written like a current best selling author's! I laughed so hard :) Poor Stephanie Meyer!

... I do too.

I picked up Twilight in my mother's room while cleaning and flipped through a couple pages. I was pissed.

Since then, I changed my writing and it turned out better.

JessicaJoy
10-22-2011, 07:33 AM
... I do too.

I picked up Twilight in my mother's room while cleaning and flipped through a couple pages. I was pissed.

Since then, I changed my writing and it turned out better.

Lol well this was just random nonsense. I wrote "Hi there, my name is jessica and I just want to know what you'll do with this. It's not really a story, nor is it a blog, this is just me writing random nonsense. I'm 23 years old and I actually had to check to know for sure, which is kind of pathetic. My friend used this too and got some interesting results."

That's why I thought it was so funny. Because they compared my random meandering writing to Stephanie Meyer. For my stories though I got Stephen King and J. R. R. Tolkien (being compared to Tolkien, even by a computer, made my squeak with joy!)

chickenrising
10-22-2011, 07:37 AM
Chuck Palahniuk!

Does anyone know what the first rule of fight club is?

Jake.C
10-22-2011, 01:03 PM
No matter how unreliable this is, there is at least some rhyme and/or reason to it. I typed in a couple lines worth of the single word 'Lolita' and it said 'I' write like Nabokov.

SPMiller
10-23-2011, 02:53 AM
I already gave a broad overview here (http://absolutewrite.com/forums/showpost.php?p=6665210&postcount=47) of how the program works. Most of you wouldn't understand a more technical explanation.

J.W. Alden
10-24-2011, 03:13 PM
I put in the first chapter of my novel and got H.P. Lovecraft (it's a science fiction novel).

I put in three scenes from a short story I'm working on (fantasy) and got Anne Rice, William Shakespeare and H.G. Wells.

Huh. :P

Tepelus
10-24-2011, 03:51 PM
I put in the first three pages of my newest chapter I'm working on and it came up with Jonathan Swift.

Drachen Jager
10-24-2011, 10:59 PM
Just to mess with the program I took an excerpt from a Dutch anatomy text. Apparently Dutch is the language of Mark Twain.

I suspect it just analyses word-length, sentence-length, paragraph-length, and a few other factors.

Reziac
10-24-2011, 11:10 PM
I think it probably falls back on stuff like word length if it fails to find a closer pattern... inspired by Drachen's foray into Dutch, I snagged some random Cyrillic text off moscow.ru and discovered that Russian journalists write like James Fenimore Cooper.

However, when the same text is first translated into English, they write like Cory Doctorow.

I conclude that Cory Doctorow writes like James Fenimore Cooper, or perhaps v.v. if you have a working time machine.

Brett Marie
10-25-2011, 02:59 PM
I just put in the Declaration of Independence. Apparently, Thomas Jefferson and the rest of the Founding Fathers wrote like H.P. Lovecraft.

AlwaysJuly
10-26-2011, 06:24 PM
According to the site, I write like Chuck Palahniuk. Really, it's hard for me to identify who I write like. I read widely, and I'm easily influenced. ;)

JBuck
10-27-2011, 08:58 AM
I got Cory Doctorow, J K Rowling and Jack London for three different pieces of the same work.

Vito
10-27-2011, 05:39 PM
I entered the first line of Hemingway's The Sun Also Rises ("Robert Cohn was once middleweight boxing champion of Princeton."), and I got...you write like Kurt Vonnegut.:ROFL:

Creative_Solitude
10-27-2011, 05:55 PM
lol - this is cool.

Apparently I write like Stephen King. Who would have guessed...lol.

Reziac
10-27-2011, 06:35 PM
I got Cory Doctorow, J K Rowling and Jack London for three different pieces of the same work.

Obviously it was a collaborative effort. :rolleyes: