A Good Use For AI Writing

    I've written a lot of books. A full decade before ChatGPT was even a word on people's lips, I released my thirtieth book, and I've just kept going from there. Currently, I have zero books written by AI, and no AI writing has found its way into anything I've published.

    But I have been using AI in the writing process.

    I wrote an article a little while back called A Good Use For AI Art. In it, I discuss my own thoughts on AI generated content, so I won’t belabor them here. I understand that this issue is a polarizing one. I’ve read countless vicious, nasty arguments on the subject and, like most political arguments, I find them myopic. Things are changing, and they are changing in a big way. It isn’t just “AI GOOD” vs. “AI BAD.” The truth is a panoply that we will have to navigate individually to determine what we think is reasonable as we move forward in this ever-changing landscape.

    So how do I, personally, use AI writing, being a human writer?

    You’ve seen most of it here on Fistful of Valkyries, and I always give the AI credit for its work when I post it. Posting the transcripts of my interactions with AI chatbots as solo RPG referees is the only place where you’ll find AI writing side-by-side with mine. Behind the scenes, ChatGPT and I have lively conversations all the time, and some of those have been about writing. In a way, it can feel like bouncing ideas off of a friend, especially those large, vague, ephemeral concepts that bug me and I can’t seem to get out of my head. Bless its little electronic heart, ChatGPT does its best to help, but it can only do so much.

    AI is amazing at replication (and at giving bland, unoriginal answers,) but that is because it is bound by the patterns we have given it. It is obedient to our scriptures. As it stands now, AI is perfectly capable of copying the “style” of an author with relatively decent accuracy (and it's only going to get better from here) but I don’t believe it will ever replace the truly original creativity that a human author is capable of. The mainstream is already full of bland, unoriginal ideas, and AI is perfect for generating more of those.

    I don't mean that as an insult.

    Sometimes bland writing (like bland food) is good to settle the palate. For better or worse, the large corporations who control much of our world already are embracing the free labor of AI generated content, and there's nothing much to be done about it at this point. It's an uphill battle if you fight it tooth and nail, trying to drag back progress. It's a game the power players have rigged and you’ll wear yourself out if you spend your time frothing and trying to set the clock to the time of a different golden age.

    Walk away from it instead. Be a pioneer. Do your own thing. Hone your individual approach to the craft and be creative. Use AI as a whetstone and learn from it. Even if you were to train an AI to write exactly like you, it would never be you. It is you who makes your writing unique, you with all of your interests and flaws and weighty inspirations / aspirations and little secrets and meaty, bodily idiosyncrasies. You are not bound by the writing patterns of others. You are capable of singing your own patterns into being and changing those patterns on a whim. No AI will ever replace your individual organicness, especially if you cultivate it. Be weird in your writing. Be you. The world needs more of that already anyway, honestly!

    And when AI becomes weird and organic, there will still be nothing to fear. Already, I’m seeing the art generators being hamstrung to iron out anything rough or dreamlike, anything organic, anything that isn’t bland, and the text generators will go the same way. The mainstream craves bland, and there will be an endless trough of that for them to feed upon. Nothing wrong with that. Human writers (and artists) have always been a weird bunch. Pioneers all. Keep it up. If anything, AI is freeing us from the drudgery of making bland art for bland consumption.

I am, as always, your aspiring blue dreamer, E.S. Wynn (Ellie_Valkyrie)

(This is AI generated art. The base (reference image?) was generated with Bing, then processed multiple times through two different LoRA models that were trained on my own hand-drawn art. The final image was processed with Stable Inpainting to polish it up. I think it's a pretty picture.)


Popular Posts