In case you didn’t know, writers everywhere are facing a new competitor: AI.
And, as with any big change, there are two distinct camps taking shape and staking a claim on what the future holds.
In one group, scepticism levels are high, the end is most certainly nigh and we (writers) should start planning a career change while we still can.
Whereas others are so enamoured with this new tech that the collective praise is almost cult-like.
In case you’re wondering, I sit somewhere in between the two camps. I’m not an early adopter of AI (although I have tried it), nor do I think writers will become obsolete in the future.
But I do think it’s time to step up our game and bring more to the table than just words. Because, let’s face it, a machine can do that too – and much faster.
A good starting point is by embracing the elements that make us human: creativity, empathy, intuition.
We need to harness our ability to make sense of the world around us and write stories to explain it. We need to showcase our intrinsic understanding of other people.
Basically, highlight all the traits that AI doesn’t have.
This means we have to step out of our comfort zone and push ourselves to be better writers. After all, the only way to win a competition is to be the best.
So what does stepping out of a comfort zone look like?
Here are a some tips from fellow writers to help you get started.
“I've been trying my hand at poetry. As a youngster, poetry was ridiculed by my peers ... that stuck with me so I always assumed it 'wasn't for me'. But I really enjoy writing it ... well outside my comfort zone though (or maybe just the sharing is).”
“I like to take courses on things that supplement not so much my writing itself, but the things I write about. For example, I just did a coding course, so I can expand my skills and use my creative, analytical, and technical knowledge in my client work.”
“I explore different types of writing. Poetry, song writing, sketch writing, limiting word count, reading very broadly. It all helps keep my perspective fresh and keeps the creative beast fuelled.”
“Perhaps introduce a limiting factor, so if you normally write long pieces, restrict your next idea to no more than 500 words or write as a character you have never tried before - the opposite sex, old rather than young, try a new medium - poetry, play, monologue etc.”
From what I’ve seen AI produce so far, I’m not worried about the future of the humble writer. Although a few of us might lose some clients along the way if they choose to pursue low cost over quality.
But if we continue to grow and develop as writers, we will always maintain our advantage.
Have a good month!
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Around the web
🌐 Want to run a business with purpose? Then you need to start with profit, according to an article in Branding Mag.
🌐 Working as a freelance copywriter involves more than being able to write well. You need business skills, a strong work ethic and thick skin. This article by Jonathan Wilcock explains more.
🌐 An AI-generated “interview” with former F1 driver Michael Schumacher was published in a German magazine last week. The editor has since been sacked. A cautionary tale for anyone playing around with AI writing tools.
One last thing …
“Computers are useless. They can only give you answers.”
- Pablo Picasso
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This is excellent, Hayley ... I would add to your list of humanness woven into our writing 'experience'. AI doesn't experience anything ... writers write their truth because they know it, feel it, have lived it.
Great read Hayley (and I love the Pablo Picasso quotation).