Wednesday, December 27, 2023

Originality over convention

Writing has long been a tightrope walk between adherence to convention and the pursuit of originality. Historically, deviating from established norms could brand you as uneducated, while a lack of originality risked the label of being clich├ęd. This delicate balance has been fundamentally disrupted by the advent of AI in writing, or "wraiting" as I like to call it.

In the pre-AI era, convention held significant value. It was a measure of education and intelligence, a yardstick to judge the clarity and correctness of one's thoughts. However, AI's ability to effortlessly follow these conventions has suddenly diminished their value. Originality has emerged as the sole contender in the arena of writing excellence. 

This seismic shift has understandably ruffled feathers. Many derive a sense of pride and authority from mastering and teaching these conventions. Yet, they now find themselves in a world where these skills are increasingly automated. This change isn't subject to debate or democratic process - it's an unstoppable wave reshaping the landscape.

Ironically, while AI excels in adhering to conventions, it's not inherently original. It can replicate, recombine, and reformat existing ideas, but the spark of true originality still lies uniquely within the human mind. This realization should be a beacon for writers in the AI era. The challenge is no longer about mastering the rules of writing but about pushing the boundaries of creativity and originality.

The implications for education are profound. Traditionally, a significant portion of writing education focused on teaching the rules – grammar, structure, formats. Now, these aspects can be delegated to AI tools. This frees educators to focus more on cultivating creativity, critical thinking, and originality. It's a shift from teaching the mechanics of writing to exploring the depths of imagination and expression.

For those resistant to this change, the path ahead may seem daunting. It involves unlearning the supremacy of convention and embracing a world where originality reigns supreme. However, this change is not a loss but an evolution. It's an opportunity to rediscover the essence of writing as an art form, where the value lies not in the adherence to rules but in the ability to transcend them.

In conclusion, the advent of AI in writing presents an opportunity for a paradigm shift. It's a call to writers and educators alike to redefine what constitutes good writing. As we navigate this new landscape, our focus should shift from convention to creativity, from format to imagination, ensuring that the heart of writing remains a distinctly human endeavor.

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