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We write like Stephen King. Who do you write like?

Stephen King - A Memoir on the Craft of Writing
On Writing – A Memoir of the Craft, by Stephen King

Writing Web Watch is not often easy.

It’s not the finding cool stuff to write about.  Web Watch has a stack of things in our To Do pile to address at some point, and the Internet is always growing.  We’ll never have a topic shortage here.

No, it’s the actual writing that can be problematic.  Finding the right words to say, putting them into their proper order. Making sure words are formed into phrases, that timing and spacing is correct.  Whoever said that writing wasn’t work was lying.  (Yes, we’re looking at you… every English teacher who ever taught.)

So when Web Watch stumbled upon the site I WRITE LIKE, we jumped at the chance to see if all the effort we poured into Web Watch was paying off.So we took a number of previous Web Watch posts and pasted them into the I WRITE LIKE text box and hit submit.

The first entry told us that we wrote like STEPHEN KING.  Fine, we’ll accept that.  Let’s try a few more just to be sure that we weren’t misled.

  • Stephen King.
  • Stephen King.
  • David Foster Wallace.
  • Edgar Allen Poe.
  • Stephen King.
  • Chuck Palahniuk.

Six randomly selected pieces of text entered, and the overwhelming result is that we write like Stephen King.

Not too shabby.

Of course, what we need to understand is that the I WRITE LIKE database  is currently at 50 different authors, all taken from the top of the writing charts.  So the chances of your writing being compared to somebody known as being quite good is relatively high… and a little bit less scientific than the site presents itself as.

The methodology is quite simple – the programmer who wrote the application just fed in works written by those authors and boiled them down to a core set of terms and phrases.  Then the same thing is done to whatever you submit, and the results are compared to each other.  If you’re lucky, there will be a match between what you wrote and what works by those writing masters have done.  For example, the lyrics to Lady Gaga’s “Alejandro” proved to be a match to Shakespeare.

Web Watch knows that ain’t right.

As the creator of the site said himself, “it’s not rocket science” to figure this out.  It’s obviously still a work in progress.

But we’ll enjoy our Stephen King comparison for the time being, until something better comes along.