Saturday, July 17, 2010

I Write Like...Who?

I came across a program called, I Write Like, which analyzes your writing and comes up with an author whose style and prose, I assume, is most like your own. Now, I write here every now and then for fun--nothing too serious. My posts here are not as polished as the stories I work on, and they probably wouldn't meet my normal standards.

I like to write in this blog for fun, and as a result, I don't put any pressure on myself to make it perfect. But, I do have other things I work on, which are not yet open to the public, that I do put lots of work into. Fictional stories, mostly.

So I decided to use the I Write Like program to analyze my writing and see what it came up with. I got this:

I write like Stephen King. The alleged proof:

I write like
Stephen King
I Write Like by Mémoires, Mac journal software. Analyze your writing!

After getting this result, I was totally confused. I don't see it, at all. Neither my prose nor my writing style is like Mr. King's! This is not a good or bad thing, it's just the way it is, as far as I can tell. So I tried again, with another writing sample. Again, it said Stephen King.

Completely befuddled, I tried one more time with a third sample. This time, I got a different result:

I write like Dan Brown. The alleged proof:

I write like
Dan Brown
I Write Like by Mémoires, Mac journal software. Analyze your writing!

Ok, something's off here. Nothing against either of these best-selling authors, because I'd love to be in either of their shoes, but it doesn't add up. I don't even read their books, really. Aside from King's On Writing, which is completely different from his novels, I haven't really read very much of his work. I think he's an amazing story-teller, but I wouldn't really cite him as an influence.

I began to wonder if this program is coded to basically conclude that everyone's writing is like King's, as a way to make you feel good about yourself or something. That, or maybe there's a glitch in the coding. So I decided to test this program's accuracy.

Instead of using my own writings, I decided to use an author who would be considered the complete opposite of Stephen King. Rather than using writings from an author that uses enthralling plots and storylines, I would use more of a literary type of story--slower moving, and focused more on the prose and characters than the pace and excitement of the story itself.

The first author that came to mind was John Updike. I certainly like his writings, but if there's one thing I'm sure of, it's that John Updike did NOT write like Stephen King. So, I pasted one of Updike's pieces into the program and hit enter.

Wouldn't you know it, the I Write Like program said John Updike writes like Stephen King! HA!

Conclusion: I'll need to use a human to read my writings when they're finished, and then purely for fun, I might ask them who I write like!

Sunday, June 27, 2010

An Afternoon in Washington Square Park

Finding Shangri-La Was Easy, but Getting There...Not So Much

Despite having declared that any new posts on this blog will be related to my increasingly difficult goal of moving to NYC (which these days just seems to grow more improbable with every day that passes), I've decided that doing this would just impose unwanted limits on what I write about--and since I simply can not have limitations in order for me to actually write, limitations are out the window. What was I thinking.

So there it is. I'm back to writing about whatever it is that pops into my brain. My reader base, of course, most likely consists of me, myself, and I. And I'm perfectly fine with that.

Next week, I will be going on a trip to Denver, Colorado, for a few days. Then I'm driving to Grand Lake, also in Colorado, where my girlfriend's parents live.

I'm really looking forward to photographing all the beautiful scenery there.

In other news, Forbes recently put a map up online that shows where people are moving to these days. The one below is for Los Angeles, CA. Red lines mean outward movement, black lines mean inward movement (the page/graphic has since been removed).

The story was pretty much the same in nearly all the U.S. cities. Inward movement to New York City is pretty much drenched in black. Yeah. No surprise there, for me anyway. I get it people. I just wonder why I never meet any of you. Not one person I know comes close to 'getting it' in terms of my desire to relocate there. Oh yeah, wait...that's because they've all already moved or are in the process of moving, apparently.

Here's the link for those of you who are curious to see what it shows about other places.

I'm stuck here with everyone else who, for some unfathomable reason, actually like living here in SoFla, where it's always summer.

One of my favorite books has a line that claims, "when you really want something, the whole universe conspires" to make it come true. Now, that's a lovely idea from an awesome fictional story, but it seems that I am apparently the exception to that rule in real life. But, it is a nice thought, and who knows, maybe someday I'll look back and find that it's true.

Well, that's it for today. Signing off, drinking the rest of my espresso, and reminding pushing myself to keep my chin upand keep trying.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Stirring Things Up

This week, I applied for at least 8 jobs that are internal to the company I work for, and at least 4 that were external. I would MUCH prefer to stay with the company I'm with, however.

I have a lot of tenure, knowledge, and experience with my current employer, and it would be great to leverage and expand those experiences in our NY headquarters.

I'm trying to prepare myself and get things in order, just in case by some miracle a do get an offer. I'm a bit worried about:

My car and how to pay off the balance if it's worth less than what I owe. I certainly would not be able to afford the loan payment living in NYC. I figure I can sell it, but I doubt I will get enough for it to clear out the $387.00 monthly payment--but that's if I get an offer anytime soon, which isn't looking very likely. I suppose a personal loan may be in order if I'm lucky enough to get a job within the next few months.

First, last and security deposit. I live paycheck to paycheck, and I have none of the above. Best case scenario, should I get a job anytime soon, is to store my stuff with various family members and find a room or sublet in the city--or whatever else I can find, basically.

I read a good piece in today's New York Times on 'How to Be a Brainy Renter.' I've been reading a lot of these kinds of articles. Education and knowing what to expect seems to be making the process a bit less scary.

Lastly, it appears I've been contacted by an IT company in New Jersey. Now, I realize it's close to Manhattan and all, but then again, it's not really where I truly want to be. This is where it gets tough. Do I settle for this, knowing that if I get the job, I'll probably need to live in NJ? It doesn't appeal to me. It is a lot closer to where I want to be than where I am now, though.

Choices, choices...

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Chipping Away Despite Adversity

So far, the job hunt has been very frustrating. This doesn’t come as much of a surprise, considering the national unemployment rate, but it’s been more difficult than I originally thought. There is a lot competition out there, much of which has an advantage over me in the education department.

Although I am a lifelong learner and literally educate myself daily—even on subjects that are typically taught in Ivy League schools, which is purely a result of curiosity and a thirst for knowledge. But it’s impossible to prove your intellectual heft on a resume without having a certified piece of paper from an over-priced university, which is supposed to be the only proof the world has to determine that you are educated. Mind you, in most cases, it is an impressive achievement that I encourage everyone to attain. I’d just like to see companies give more consideration to people with lots of experience, too.

I admit, I feel this way mostly out of frustration—the result of not finding another job yet.

Just this week, I’ve applied to five jobs within the company I currently work for (my preference), and about ten jobs outside the company. It’s too soon to receive a response from most of them, but I did get a ‘no thanks’ message from one. The silver lining there is that at least I didn’t have to go through a series of interviews only to lose out on the job. Truth is, I’m trying to stay realistic and be ready for lots of rejection.

I am only human, though, so I’m dealing with the inevitable urge to give up. There only a certain amount of disappointment one can handle. I do see it coming when it happens. Yet, somehow I don’t think it will make the blows any easier to take.

It will be interesting to see how I will hold up emotionally speaking, though. How long will I be able to endure the wave of rejections that will almost certainly come my way?

A New Direction

A few months ago, I stopped updating this blog because I wasn't sure how I felt about continuing with it, mostly for one reason: personal privacy.

One of the good traits that *I* think I have, is my preference for being full disclosure about what's on my mind or how I feel when it comes to my personal life. This is good for me in that I feel much more genuine being sort of an open book for the whole world to read.

The bad part is that I have tended to allow even private thoughts or feelings--some of which may have been irrational, which also tend to be fleeting--to be revealed. The biggest issue I had with this is that without providing any context or perspective behind what I was sharing, the words are too open to misinterpretation, speculation, and uninformed assumptions.

Lately, I've been thinking about updating again, but mostly focusing on where I am in pursuing my dream: moving to New York City.

So, going forward, beginning with the next post, this will be the topic of most of my updates. The trials, tribulations of trying to uproot my life, my stability, my comfort, and ultimately putting my happiness, my dreams, and my future all on the line. I don't know if I will ever really be able to make it happen. If I do, it will be the first time I truly had the courage to follow a dream; if I don't make it, hopefully I could at least find consolation in knowing that I tried.