Tom Gilson


I write like
Dan Brown

I Write Like by Mémoires, Mac journal software. Analyze your writing!

I’ve never even read Dan Brown. Please, God, don’t let it be true that I’ve ever written anything like,

Overhanging her precarious body was a jaundiced face whose skin resembled a sheet of parchment paper punctured by two emotionless eyes.

And I really hope I’ve never committed anything like these other monstrosities.

The website doesn’t say what Dan Brown and I have in common. I doubt it analyzes for clunky constructions, and I’m sure it knows nothing about our theology. I wish it meant something about my potential sales!

I got this from David Heddle, whose analysis came out much more favorably. He probably didn’t know how bad it could turn out for me, so I think we can still be friends.

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7 thoughts on “I’m Dooooomed!

  1. Hi Tom:

    Just remember, the “analysis” of your writing is based on an empiriometric model, i.e., “measurements” are made of text… and from this a HUGE and illicit jump is made to the essence (meaning) of the writings. That’s why it is equivocation (a fallacy) to compare your writing with Brown’s: it’s like measuring a small red apple and a large red apple and concluding their essentially the same… without actually diving in an tasting each of the apples. (My analogy is admittedly weak, but it draws out the point.) Another example: as a musician I bet you could compose a piece of music that, per the numbers, would be more “complex” than Mozart’s 20th Piano Concerto… but which would be recognized by any sane rational agent as sheer genius? (No disrespect to your musical talents intended.) One more example: an unabridged dictionary is much more complex than one of William Shakespeare’s sonnets… yet which is an expression of genius?

    Measurement of properties is based on the first accident of real being: quantity. Accidents inhere “in” substances and should never be confused with them. (This is one of DL’s deep problems: he focuses on accidents at the expense of substance.) The model used to compare the writings of individuals (who are rational agents) succumbs to the reductionist numbers game, i.e., the error that numbers allegedly fully capture essences.

  2. Tom’s readers deserve the chance to read the prose Tom left in a comment on my blog:

    Renowned physicist and novelist David Heddle stood in the darkened room, examining the brittle, ink-laden document under the glaring rows of 52-watt Phillips fluorescent lights suspended from the dirty gray Armstrong acoustic ceiling, muttering loudly to himself, careless of the fact that no one else could hear him, “where did fellow blogger Tom Gilson post that location?” The tall figure looming silhouetted above his chair gazed down at him and answered pendulously from between mustachioed and bearded lips, “click here for the answer.” Renowned physicist David Heddle looked pensively for a mouse—any mouse!—to click….

    Is that vintage Dan Brown or what? In fact, has anyone ever seen Dan Brown and Tom Gilson together? Hmm?

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