How AI Can Help Strengthen Your Writing by Keri Kruspe · Writer’s Fun Zone

How AI Can Help Strengthen Your Writing by Keri Kruspe · Writer’s Fun Zone

Let’s welcome back monthly columnist Keri Kruspe as she shares with us “How AI Can Help Strengthen Your Writing” Enjoy!

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There is a lot of controversy out there about Artificial Intelligence (AI) – especially for those of us in the creative arts. Some view it as the end of civilization, some view it as a much-needed boost to productivity.

I first heard about the two AI’s I’ll outline in the article from Joanna Penn’s podcast. She’s big into AI and even has a course in it.

I haven’t decided if I’ll take the course yet, but I like knowing it’s there if I need it.

Whatever you view about AI, I’m not here to persuade you either way. What I am going to do is confess the three new AI programs I’ve started using this year:

Midjourney, ChatGPT, and Sudowrite.

Midjourney

What is Midjourney you may ask?

According to designboom,

“Midjourney is a chat-powered, artificial intelligence (AI) image-generating tool that can produce realistic images and artworks based on given text prompts”.

For someone like me who can’t draw a straight line, it’s like playing in a candy store.

I’m a very visual person who loves to look at pictures when I write.

When I write in Scrivener (which can also be considered having AI tendencies), I like having a picture on the page about whatever or whomever I’m writing about.

Scrivener pic

By the time I’m done with my complete novel, I have several pictures I’ve created that I can include into the finished book.

I did that in my latest release, Alien Legacy: The Mage. With each chapter I included two pictures that I made with Midjourney.

That’s not to say it all goes off without a hitch. 

I’m finding that the AI has a hard time with different color tints (one of my aliens has bright yellow skin and neon eyes with no pupils).

So, I fall down the rabbit-hole trying to get as close as possible to what I’m looking for. Sometimes the prompt is so bad, I get nothing like I’ve asked for.

When that happens, I’ve got to be careful. It’s so easy for me to tumble down the rabbit hole. Hours can go by without me realizing it.

Here is an example of what I’m talking about.

The prompt I used was, 

“full body shot of a cyclops man with a huge belly with a small head in proportion to the rest of him with only one large orange eye in the middle of his forehead, yellow feathers instead of hair, pale yellow skin wearing a kilt–v 4”

and this is what I got. 

Bird beak? Where did that come from? Needless to say, it’s not perfect.

Flygir times 4

How do you know what to put in?

Never fear, my friend. Like everything else, just put in the question on your favorite search engine and a ton of video tutorials pop up.

Because I’m not very computer savvy, I have to find the ones that go step by step.

I’ve been doing this for a couple of months now and am getting better. I build on what I know and query what I don’t.

Midjorney offers a free trial for you to play with. Just know you must sign up for Discord chat in order to access it.

My advice is to do that first and see if you even like it before you shell out the dough.

ChatGPT

Now here’s an AI I can wrap my writer’s brain around.

My first attempt at using something like this was ChatGPT. 

This AI is another chatbot launched in November of 2022. It was built on top of a program called OpenAI’s GPT-3, a large language model that interacts in a conversational way.

The dialogue format made it easy for the program to answer follow up questions and admit its mistakes. It also rejects inappropriate requests.

It’s great in creating summaries for new novels as well as a way to have an interactive “friend” read what you wrote and give suggestions on how to make it “better” – depending on what your definition of “better” is.

ChatGPT

I was happy using ChatGPT for free… but the biggest downside became all too clear.

More often than not I’d get an error message saying it was at capacity (the room was too full) and to try again later.

At that time, I looked into subscribing, but it was over $40 a month! Ack!

From what I understand now, you can subscribe as low as $20 a month. They state they are inviting folks to go on the ChatGPT API waitlist while they develop lower-cost plans.

Because I’m an impatient soul, I looked into another such chatroom and found Sudowrite (again, courtesy of Joanna Penn).

Sudowrite

One of the best things I like about Sudowrite is how it came about.

It was developed by writers for writers. 

Apparently, the founders were sci-fi writers and fine-tuned the GPT-3 program by using high-quality narrative training data.

Writers can use Sudowrite to create new stories or tweak any existing work.

Pros:

  • Brainstorm characters, plots, worlds, and more.
  • Expand plot points.
  • Rewrite to ‘Show not Tell’
  • Describe things for the 5 senses.
  • Generate Twists.
  • AI gives feedback mimicking “human” readers.
  • 4000 word free trial with all features included.

Cons:

  • “Twist” feature is limited to the SciFi/Fantasy genres (which is just fine with me!)

I like that it helps you brainstorm. From a single sentence to developing your characters.

Sudowrite

You can also expand your plot to having it describe story elements (i.e. sight, sound, smell, touch, taste and well as an esoteric metaphor).

I admit I haven’t tried half of what Sudowrite offers. I’m still playing around with it!

Conclusion

I’m not looking for any AI program to take my place as a “creative” (which is what Joanna Penn calls us).

What I use them for is to give me a helping hand to bring out my own ideas. It’s like having a critique partner at your beck and call 24/7!

I’d like to hear if you’ve had a chance to “play around” with any of these formats.

Let me know what experience you’ve had with them. Good? Bad? Either/Or?

Join the conversation and leave a comment!

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Keri KruspeKeri Kruspe has been an author since the age of twelve and has always been fascinated with otherworldly stories that end in Happily Ever After. Author of Otherworldly Romantic Adventures, Keri’s first series is An Alien Exchange trilogy. An Alien Exchange is the first book in the arousing Alien Exchange sci-fi romance series. If you like sexy aliens, feisty heroines, and fast-paced action, then you’ll love Keri Kruspe’s steamy space adventure.

Keri now resides with her family in the wilds of Northwestern Michigan. An avid reader, Keri enjoys good wine, good food, and watching action/adventure movies. You can find her most days immersed in her fantasy world of writing or traveling with her hubby in their RV, discovering intelligent life here on Earth. For goodies, news of upcoming releases, sign up for her newsletter at www.kerikruspe.com.

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