Thursday, November 19, 2009

I has a s-m-r-t b-o-o-k.

Courtesy of an uberly awesome website that was brought to my attention via the NaNoWriMo Procrastination Station, I was able to input my novel and have it review the text. Using some strange arcane dowsing it could then tell you based on several different tests it ran just how hard to read your novel was. Or rather, what level of education you would need your reader to have before they could grasp what the hell you were talking about.
On average you would want around a 6 to an 8 on the Gunning-Fox Index, wherein it suggests the education level of the individual that could read and appreciate it.(The exact definition is: "Indication of the number of years of formal education that a person requires in order to easily understand the text on the first reading.") A 5's not bad. An 11 means that you're writing for the Wall Street Journal. A 20 or more means you're a government website, although I'm thinking probably that was a joke thrown in by the author. So for the sake of finding out if my work was as simplistic as I thought it was, I tossed the portion I had with me in to the generator and let it run.
Seven seconds later it spat out a wash of numbers at me. And I was really very surprised. For you see, I rated a 10.11 on the Gunning-Fox Index. Further review showed that using something called the Flesh Kincaid Grade level, I rated an 8.42. So basically what it's saying is a really smart 8th grader could grasp this, or someone with 10 years of education.
Considering the books that I was reading when I was in 8th grade, I'm a bit astonished and I'm wondering now if I haven't over written the book a bit. Perhaps there's too much jargon and now it's too difficult to read for the average person? But at the same time I really, really wanted this to be a high concept piece, something where I fleshed out the whole world and all of its marvelous achievements, along with the sudden stop enforced on them, like humanity and its technology hit a wall at 75 miles an hour, recoiled, then realized they needed the very wall they hit to stay safe and only dared peek around it briefly to make sure the boogeyman was not on the other side. THAT is the world I want to portray. And you know... maybe I have. It's not even fully created yet, there are only 30 pages to this dream. It'll all have out in the editing and finishing anyway.

But yeah, I'm proud of my 30+ pages so far. It r SMRT. ^_^

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