Embracing My Style

Style…Have You Got It? was a recent post by Cynthia Robertson. The post was prompted by a fun tool that is meant to analyse your writing style and then produce the name of an author your writing most closely matches.

I used the first few paragraphs of my work in progress in the analyser and the result was William Gibson. The last few paragraphs of chapter three produced the result Harry Harrison.

Even though I got two different results for the same novel I was pleased with the results because William Gibson and Harry Harrison are both known as science fiction/speculative fiction writers. This novel is meant to fit in with those genres. I am pleased my writing style matches the intended genres.

Cynthia then raised the question, do writers write in a specific style or if they were to switch genres would they also change the style of the writing to match the genre. I would have assumed that I changed or adapted my style when I write in different genres but I was wrong. When I put passages from a few of my short stories that were not written in the science fiction genre, I still got compared to several different writers who write science fiction stories.

What has this little exercise taught me as a writer?

I suppose it has taught me that although I dabble in different genres from time to time for fun, I am on the right path with writing novels that have a strong base in science fiction or at least speculative fiction. I had been unsure for a while as to whether I was more of a fantasy writer or more of a science fiction writer but I guess this helps settle things a little more in my own mind.

A while back I wrote a post for my dad on Father’s Day entitled How made dad accidentally inspired me to become a writer. That post outlined the science fiction films my dad and I shared over the years. I guess this fun analyser also confirms that yes, I am more of a science fiction writer than anything else and yes, it is my dad’s fault. Truly and deeply I want to say thanks dad. I will embrace the sci-fi writer within me.


About Billie Jo Schinnerer

Born and raised on the edge of the Helderberg Escarpment in eastern New York. Formerly a primary and middle school teacher. Moved to the North West area of England in 2003. Now a mother of three and a wannabe author.
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15 Responses to Embracing My Style

  1. Anne Michaud says:

    Wow, quite a compliment to be associated with those two writers…*jealous*

  2. Gene Lempp says:

    Pretty awesome Billie Jo. Write with confidence 🙂

  3. That’s a cool little tool. My fiction turns up Kurt Vonnegut and Gertrude Stein, while my non-fic turns up David Foster Wallace. I haven’t read any of those authors’ work, but it seems I’m all over the place. I wish it showed some detail regarding how the results are determined. Still neat, though.

  4. Thanks for the blog shout, Billie Jo. =) So glad you had fun with the link. I got Dan Brown for my historical novel, and the guy who wrote Fight Club with a short story.
    Wonderful that you and your father had those shared interests. Just a perfect example of how much influence parents can have, and the importance of spending time with our kids. So important.

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  7. I agree with embracing your style. I didn’t exactly set out to write in the genres where I do, I mostly got there by doing what I enjoyed and what I seemed to do well.

    I got Stephen King from that online tool a while ago, which is pretty accurate, since I write about everyday events with a few supernatural elements, in a pretty straightforward style, as does Uncle Stevie. 🙂

    • I think in life sometimes we just have to go where the wind blows us otherwise we fight a losing battle. I enjoy writing things with a bit of a twist on the norm and like sci-fi so why not?

      Stephen King is a great person to be compared to stylistically. He certainly tells interesting tales.

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