January 2023


January 6, 2023

There are a few lines in the academic conduct section of this semester's Advanced Novel Workshop that say: "If any student is discovered to have used an AI tool such as ChatGPT to write any part of any assignment or presentation, the student will receive an automatic F in the course. Plagiarism from any source will result in an F for the assignment and the course. It’s hard to imagine why any writer would want an AI to take over their jobs, but we live in bizarre times."

I'd been hearing things about this Open AI-powered text aggregator, but I hadn't taken the time to look into it. I made an account last night and proceeded to terrify myself by how accurate this thing could be. I have to wonder how any professor would ever be able to detect its use. A savvy student wouldn't even have to copy and paste its results verbatim, but using a halfway decent output—and spoilers: all output from this thing is halfway decent—with a little creative editing it could significantly cut down the time required to pen an essay.

Whether this development is going to be good or bad for us poor humans remains to be seen. I'm not worred; I only write for myself these days. But for someone coming up in the literary world they may some day end up having to produce hybrid papers where such AI-based tools do most of the heavy lifting. I supposed there's some concern over a crisis of authority that may occur on the Internet, but if these machines were tuned well enough who's to say they wouldn't be the ultimate? After all: they only draw upon the things us fleshbags have produced.

For your amusement, here's the output from my first-ever query, "explain how to make a living writing fiction in 2023":

Making a living writing fiction in 2023 may involve a combination of traditional and non-traditional methods of earning an income from your writing. Here are a few potential strategies:

  1. Publish your work through traditional channels, such as literary agents and publishing houses. This may involve pitching your work to agents, writing query letters, and potentially undergoing several rounds of revisions with editors.

  2. Self-publish your work, either by uploading it to a platform like Amazon's Kindle Direct Publishing or through a print-on-demand service like CreateSpace. This allows you to have complete control over the publication process and to keep a larger share of the profits, but it also requires you to do your own marketing and promotion.

  3. Monetize your writing through online platforms, such as Patreon or Medium, where readers can pay a subscription fee to access your work.

  4. Pursue other opportunities, such as writing for magazines or newspapers, or creating content for companies or organizations.

  5. Consider teaching creative writing or offering writing workshops as a way to supplement your income.

It's worth noting that making a living as a fiction writer can be challenging, and it may take time to build a readership and generate sufficient income. However, with dedication and hard work, it is possible to turn your passion for writing into a sustainable career.


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