I was planning to change the blurb for the “Swift Escape” for a while now. If you look at the genres where Amazon places it, it falls under tech thriller. This comes from the fact that people who picked up that book normally read this kind of genre. And also from the fact that it is a thriller dealing with a new biological weapon, and spy intrigue, and science mystery, and so on. However. One of the strongest sub-genre it actually should fall into is a romance. And yet, it doesn’t.
This presents an issue, and I’ll explain why:
A reader who loves thrillers will love the intrigue and mystery in “Swift Escape”, but they won’t like intimate romance moments at all (and I know this because of the reviews).
But a romance lover will love the romance bits a lot, but they won’t mind the thriller parts. Romance lovers can roll with thriller, crime, drama, paranormal (especially paranormal!) and history. As long as there is romance and HEA 😉
So basically I am in a wrong genre and that means people don’t see my book.
Why such a big intro?
Because of the ChatGPT.
With the big bang of ChatGPT, I know many authors are re-writing their blurbs with the help of an AI, making it better, making it more salesy. And it makes sense more than one might think. You see, for some unexplainable reason, writers can write a novel of 200,000 words within a few months or years, but then struggle when they need to put down only 200 words for their blurbs. And most of them turn out not to be the best sales pitches either. (Writers are generally horrible sales people)
So, yes, getting help does make sense.
But here’s where I see a problem. Not only in getting AI help with blurbs but in writing books in general (go check the internet and you’ll see there are already many how-to YouTube videos where people explain how to write a book with the help of an AI). And if you check this podcast from TheCreativePenn, you will learn that Tim Boucher published 60 books in the matter of 5 months (https://lostbooks.ca ).
Let me repeat that because I could hardly believe it myself.
From November 2022 to March 2023, he published 60 books.
And then there is a long pause where I’m looking into the distance and I am pretty much stunned and I don’t know how to continue.
I decided some years back that I cannot compete with the “super-writers” who publish a-book-every-month. How do they manage to do that I have zero idea. But good on them.
I can’t .
I know now that I need time for a story to mature in my head first. And then there is lots and lots of research after that. Which needs lots and lots of time. So, yes, my books take minimum two years. Minimum.
But, with the dawn of the ChatGPT, the book-a-month goes out the window too. Now, it will be a-book-a-day. Or perhaps several of them.
Maybe not quite yet – as the AI writing still needs editing step – but soon. Because the AI is getting better by the second.
And now comes my question.
If we give the writing to the AI, what is left for us?
What is left for me?
If we give illustrations not to the artist on DeviantArt but to Midjourney – and let me tell you, the stuff that comes out is mind blowing – what is then left for creative humans to do? Because I always thought if humans can do something really well, creativity is it. A lot of manual and statistical work can and will be taken away. But art?
I will not be able to compete with an AI generated content. Not by a long shot. It will be generated too quickly. Who will wait 2 or 3 years to read my next book?
Now, does that mean I should stop writing?
This AI topic threw me in a deep well, made me question my decisions, my strategies, my books and my future in writing. It made me think a lot about creation and about already created content.
It made me think of art.
What is art?
Creating something out of nothing.
But does AI create something out nothing? No. Or certainly not yet. It uses all the creative work available on the internet and mixes it and jumbles it into a new content. Which of course begs the question of a copyright. If AI uses a photograph, or a painting, or a music composition, or a book, to twist it into something new, the copyright and ideally any kind of royalty payment should go respectively to the original creator.
But it doesn’t.
Hopefully that will be changed with time.
Also, there is a certain fear the unknown.
When radioactivity was first discovered, the people thought it was amazing. You can see your own skeleton, you can check how well a shoe fits your foot by looking at an Xray screen, you can even make jewellery out of a radioactive material. Until it was discovered that it wasn’t so amazing after all.
Technology ahead of ethics.
But then again, when computers just started being made, many people were afraid of it. They feared that it will take their jobs. And it did. But it created many more new ones.
So which of the two extremes is the AI?
Should we be afraid of it?
Or should we embrace it and ride the wave?
I think what terrifies me the most is the fact that all the software engineers who are involved into making AI curcuits say they don’t know what is happening inside. They don’t understand how it actually works. It just does. And that automatically means lack of control. And also lack of consequences.
If a human makes a crime, we place them in jail.
Bad behavior – bad consequence.
Other humans learn.
But what kind of “jail” consequence can we place on an AI when we don’t even know what it is afraid of, or what is it that it doesn’t want?
But I ran away from the conversational AI, our ChatGPT.
Let me get back to the point: the blurb of the “Swift Escape”.
I wanted to write the new blurb, make it more romance-y, make it clear that it is the romance readers who should be interested in this book rather than thriller lovers. And though I am certain I am not the best person to write this sales pitch – a professional copywriter or ChatGPT would do it much better (as I said, I’m a lousy sales person), I still want to do it myself.
Because I love creating, and I find the creative process rewarding.
And so I did it.
And to prove to you that I actually didn’t use ChatCPT, I made a screen video recording as I did it.
If you want to see it, check the link here. And – please don’t mind my grammar mistakes: I am not a native English speaker.
I would love to hear what do you think of ChatGPT and AI in general. Where do you think this will take us?