I’ve been posting to kuro5hin since it split from slashdot under one name or another. Having been there to see it born I feel obligated to stick around to see it end. I’ve contributed a lot to the site over the years in terms of both stories (rated content) and diaries (unrated content). One of the guys ponied up a link to I Write Like and I gave it a try. I would say it’s interesting in terms of proposition but not in terms of accuracy. When I was actually trying to write like a particular author – usually William Gibson – it instead chose Stephen King. This is sort of sad since I think his writing is crap, but if they put William Gibson in there I’m afraid far too many people would simply go “who”?
The exposition I wrote when asked for comment:
When I’m writing a manual, it comes out like Wallace. When I’m writing for atmosphere, it comes out like Steven King or Lewis Carol.
Which is weird, because when I’m writing for atmosphere I am usually trying to write like William Gibson. That is to say I try to describe people, places and things with detail while making an effort to withhold information so I can also describe this later.
Neuromancers first line was “the sky above the port was the color of a television, tuned to a dead channel”. I always thought it was a great, great piece of writing, and what possibly adds value to it as a metaphor is the idea that new TVs – the hip, high tech and sleek ones he wrote about – don’t give you the static gray anymore. It’s only if you know how things were before, or you explore a piece of technology which is “old and busted” to find a use for it, which would provide you with what a TV might look like tuned to a dead channel. In this march of technology the writing becomes more relevant to the gritty cyberpunk culture Gibson wrote about. “The street finds it’s own use for things”.