Is this a good idea?

Good Yarn

It's hard to imagine a single author churning out a full-length novel every nine weeks, but that's exactly what writer Jennifer Lepp told the Verge she does constantly. To keep up with demand and make a decent living, indie novelists are cranking out books more quickly than ever before.

Lepp, whose pen name is Leanne Leeds, told the pub that she's even started using an artificial intelligence program to assist with her writing, and that it's made her faster. Now, she can fine tune sections of copy or find inspiration for a passage instead of relying on a precise spreadsheet with daily word counts goals in order to meet her impossible deadlines.

"It’s just words," Lepp told the Verge. "It’s my story, my characters, my world. I came up with it. So what if a computer wrote them?"

Fictional Future

The program Lepp uses is called Sudowrite, which is built on OpenAI's GPT-3 machine learning model and which writers can try before purchasing. Like many AIs designed to create artwork in various mediums based on prompts, it takes practice and skill to get usable chunks of text — users have to learn to communicate ideas with the AI, making the process something akin to a machine-human collaboration.

AI writing is controversial. One professor and writer the Verge interviewed even left social media for periods of time because of pushback against her acceptance of AI writing.

How many writers will take up AI and how it could affect book sales in the future is an unanswered question, but one thing's for sure — AI storytelling is here, regardless of how we feel about it.

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