I Write Like is an interesting little analytical tool that supposedly shows what famous author your writing is like. The funny thing is, depending on what text you submit, you will write like a different author. For instance, pasting in the text from this post about oil disaster coverage, I get this:
Which is interesting, because I’ve never read David Foster Wallace’s Infinite Jest book.
But submitting this post about summer projects, I find this:
A long time ago, I noted that I would pick up little conventions from whatever author I was reading at the time. I went through a period of reading Hunter S. Thompson, so I’d use a lot of “indeed’s” in my columns. When I was reading John Irving, I’d pick up some of his conventions. I like to think I’ve broken that pattern. I hope I have.
Update: I pasted the majority of my as-yet-unfinished dissertation, and got David Foster Wallace again, for what it’s worth.