Archive for July, 2010

I Write Like Nabokov (?)

I’m working on a new story, writing it out longhand in a real paper notebook, every other line, with black ink for the original lines and blue, purple, and red for corrections and annotations. After spending much of the day at the computer keyboard, I find that taking the time to write the letters and words legibly in my slow, steady print helps calm me down and improve my focus as I measure each line.

My friend Aaron DaMommio linked me to a site called “I Write Like” that promises to analyze your writing sample to determine what well-known author your style most closely resembles. I entered the first half dozen paragraphs of my new story and got this:

I write like
Vladimir Nabokov

I Write Like by Mémoires, Mac journal software. Analyze your writing!

I confess that I’ve never read any Nabokov, at least not that I recall. But I’ve heard of him, naturally. For all I know, this site routinely proclaims submissions to be the work of the next Hemingway. Nonetheless, I was unduly pleased that a computer algorithm made this startling determination. It’s right up there with the time I killed seven flies with one blow.

Edit: Two later submissions suggested that I also write like Kurt Vonnegut and David Foster Wallace [Thanks to my mother-in-law Sue for catching my mistake on Wallace’s name]. I am vast, I contain authorial multitudes.

Here’s a link to the site: http://iwl.me/

And to the “proof”: http://iwl.me/s/c3e0655f


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