What’s the next level for writing?

rock-shadow

photo courtesy http://writingexercises.co.uk/random-image-generator.php

 

Writers and readers, would you like your books to be written at the next level? That is, written not by a human, but by an artificial intelligence?

Yes?

Good, because it’s coming. It’s here.

No?

Too bad, because soon robots will take writer’s jobs (everybody’s jobs).

In the meantime, here’s a website that lets you ease into a world without human fiction writers:

WritingExercises.co.uk

This site has a list of links (on the left side) which lets you generate “random” story elements, such as story titles, character descriptions, and dialogue.

I played around a bit, and here’s what I got:

Title: Poisoned Forest

*

Town Name: Tombminster

*

Character Name #1: Elaine Barnes (mixed and matched first / last names with Janice Wilkinson)

Character Description: A selfish 60 year-old woman

Traits: shy, unkind, materialistic

Job Title: Lighthouse Keeper

*
Character Name #2: Janice Wilkinson (mixed and matched first / last names with Elaine Barnes)

Character Description: A helpful 33 year-old woman

Traits:  idealistic, decisive, compassionate

Job Title: Surveyor

*

Quickie Plot:

The story begins in a church crypt
Someone mistakenly believes s/he has killed someone
It’s a story about learning from mistakes
Your character offers to lend a helping hand

*

Random Dialogue (hacked this a bit):

“You came back!”

“Please don’t argue. You have to leave right now, you aren’t safe here.”

“This isn’t just about you. It’s about what’s best for all of us.”

*

List of 3 Random Words:

education ghost coffin

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List of 8 Random Words (more=merrier):

queen
dominate
rotten
hamburger
confound
mad
pancake
shun

*

More intriguing random stuff (I forget which links I clicked):

The old house, with its wildly overgrown garden, was silent, secretive

An imaginative 66 year-old woman, who comes from a poor background, lives in a terraced house and tends to be a little clumsy.

A generous 33 year-old woman, who comes from a poor background, lives in a caravan and tends to drink too much.

*

So if you’re looking for story prompts, check it out. I’m going to put the above in a back burner folder and use it as a springboard for a future story, robots be damned. But in the meantime, feel free to jump on any of the random elements I found for your own stories.

Writer and multi-leveled castle-dweller Tom Merriman provided the theme for this post; thanks, Tom!

For a comprehensive list of partial and full stories, click here.

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8 Comments

  1. You find some very interesting sites, CM! Next Level stuff indeed!
    I’m now away to write my tale based on your findings… well, my Inner Robot is…

    Reply
  2. I’ve seen a couple writers bemoan the piece about the short novel written [mostly] by a program. But they don’t seem to care so much about robots and programs replacing other jobs. It’s definitely coming — to the point that I recently saw some decision-making algorithm that was better at predicting some business choice better than humans with kooshy white-collar gigs. My ONLY concern about it all is a lack of compassion many have for people who end up out of work when they are replaced with technology.

    There will be that interim period where a lot of lives are hurt and maybe even ruined. I know some futurists say, “But it will be great — we will have all we need, there will be no need for money, and we will make all we require in our homes with nonotech.”

    I’m not saying we won’t, but getting there will not be as pretty as some make it sound.

    But this is about technology writing novels. I have no doubt there will be people who might read again and be like, “Program R7-589 writes the best stuff!” and more realistically, literary snobs becoming almost gun-shy to claim new favorite writers, afraid they will be duped. If a program were writing great stuff and a marketing team were like, “Hey, you’re kind of literary…want to be the human face of Program R7-589? We’ll send you on tours and everything,” I’m guessing we’re not too far off from something that can trick even humans who are very into literature.

    It doesn’t bother me, but then…I don’t think what I do is a precious thing. The market is already flooded with writers; it’s easier than ever to get published, but not as easy to make a living. So…I will write whether the other things writing are human or some program. I almost look forward to hearing writers complain about having to compete against programs because I know a couple people who have no heart when others lose their jobs to technology. The notion that writing is somehow more noble than a factory gig has always struck me as odd…all the way back to when I was working in factories and warehouses and writing comic books, screenplays, and novels on the side.

    The other thing that will be interesting is once technology creates good art…seeing how there will be backlash and a strong movement to support novels written by humans that they can trace back to actually writing the novels. “All my books are written by meat!”

    Or something like that.

    (Or maybe I’m just writing this so in the future when robots and programs rise up and decide to destroy all humans, they scan the Internet and are like, “Well, that Chris guy was pro-bot way before pro-bot was cool. We’ll let him live for our amusement…”)

    Reply
    • Ditch-digging. ‘Twas a noble career ‘fore the ‘bots took o’re e’er. And I’ll eagerly welcome my ‘bot o’erlords…

      I won’t complain if they put me in a zoo. I would make a great pet. (Seriously, what would be the point of complaining? I’d much rather be in a humane zoo than be culled as a malfunctioning meat bag.) BTW, “100% WRITTEN BY MEAT” is a great label. Mind if I borrow that? 🙂 (And by “great” I mean campy and self-depreciating, future o’erlords.)

      Message to future ‘bots: ” ‘Bots are Awesome!” <– quote by CM Stewart AKA poor ginger living in a trailer park

      Reply
  3. Random story elements – what fun! If my muse starts to get stingy, I’ll know where to look! 🙂

    Reply
  1. Barnes of Tombminster – Beyond the Sphere

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