I Wrote an Entire Book with AI. This is What Happened.

The Nerdy Novelist
1 Jan 202411:28

TLDRThe speaker shares their experience of writing a Gothic fantasy novel titled 'Heirs of Dracula' using AI, with minimal editing. They highlight that AI didn't save as much time as anticipated but significantly reduced mental effort, aiding in overcoming burnout. They found Claude 2.0 to be the most effective AI model for fiction writing and suggest a new writing approach using tools like Novel Crafter. AI proved helpful in enhancing weak areas while allowing focus on strengths, though the final story was shorter than expected. The speaker expresses emotional satisfaction on completing the book, crediting AI for making the process less daunting.

Takeaways

  • πŸ“š The author utilized AI to complete a book titled 'Heirs of Dracula', which is a Gothic fantasy set in their world.
  • 🎨 A commissioned artwork, not AI-generated, was used for the book cover, showcasing the integration of traditional and AI art.
  • ⏳ Contrary to expectations, AI did not significantly reduce the time spent on writing, but rather saved mental effort.
  • πŸ”₯ AI helped the author overcome burnout and resume writing, highlighting its potential as a mental aid over a time-saving tool.
  • πŸ€– Claude 2.0 was identified as the most effective AI model for fiction writing at the time, though not without its imperfections.
  • πŸ“ The author plans to use tools like Novel Crafter for future writing, focusing on writing sections incrementally for better style consistency.
  • πŸ’ͺ AI proved beneficial in enhancing the author's weaknesses while allowing them to focus on their strengths during the writing and editing process.
  • πŸ“‰ The final word count was lower than anticipated, prompting a reevaluation of the story's pacing and content.
  • 😒 The emotional impact of finishing a full-length novel after a long period of burnout was profound for the author.
  • πŸ“– The book, despite AI assistance, remains the author's own work, with careful editing and selection of AI-generated content.

Q & A

  • What is the title of the book that the speaker completed with the help of AI?

    -The title of the book is 'Heirs of Dracula'.

  • What genre does the speaker describe the book as?

    -The book is described as a Gothic fantasy.

  • What was the speaker's first major takeaway from using AI to write the book?

    -The first major takeaway was that using AI did not save a significant amount of time, but it did save mental effort.

  • Which AI model did the speaker find to be the most effective for writing fiction at the time?

    -The speaker found Claude 2.0 to be the best model for writing fiction at the time.

  • How did the speaker plan to use AI differently for their next book?

    -The speaker plans to write the first 500 words of each chapter themselves and then allow AI to continue from there, to better match their style.

  • What role did AI play in helping the speaker overcome their writing struggles?

    -AI helped the speaker overcome their writing struggles by saving them mental effort and reducing the barrier to entry, especially for those struggling with conditions like ADHD, depression, or autism.

  • How did the final word count of the book compare to the speaker's expectations?

    -The final word count of the book was shorter than expected, coming in at just over 50,000 words instead of the anticipated 75,000.

  • What was the speaker's emotional reaction to finishing the book?

    -The speaker felt emotional and celebrated the accomplishment, as it had been a long time since they had finished a full-length novel due to previous burnout.

  • How did the speaker ensure that the AI's contributions to the book were in line with their own writing style?

    -The speaker heavily edited the AI's contributions and only kept the sections that were either identical to what they would write or better than their own writing.

  • What was the speaker's strategy for handling characters like Sherlock Holmes in the book?

    -The speaker was initially nervous about writing such a beloved character but found that AI could produce excellent dialogue for Sherlock, which required minimal editing.

  • Where will the finished book be available for purchase?

    -The book will be available for purchase at regular places like Amazon and Barnes & Noble where ebooks are sold.

Outlines

00:00

πŸ“š Writing a Book with AI: Experience and Takeaways

The speaker discusses their experience of writing a book titled 'Heirs of Dracula' using AI, with minimal editing required. They share their five key takeaways from the process. The first takeaway is that AI did not save as much time as anticipated, but it saved mental effort, helping the speaker overcome burnout. The speaker also found Claude 2.0 to be the most effective AI model for writing fiction at the time, but noted its imperfections and the need for a better approach, such as using novel crafter for the next book. The speaker emphasizes that AI can be a mental saver, not just a time saver, for writers.

05:01

πŸ€– AI as a Writing Partner: Strengths and Weaknesses

The speaker shares how AI assisted in writing by filling in for their weaknesses and enhancing their strengths. They found that AI could produce high-quality dialogue for complex characters like Sherlock Holmes, but required adjustments for other characters. The speaker also discusses their strategy of writing the first part of each chapter themselves and then letting AI continue, which they believe will better match their writing style. They note that AI helped to raise the baseline quality of their work, allowing them to focus on refining their strengths.

10:02

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The speaker reflects on the final length of their book, which turned out to be shorter than expected. They had anticipated a 75,000-word novel but ended up with just over 50,000 words. The speaker is now considering whether to add more scenes to flesh out the story. They note that the shorter length might be acceptable given the single viewpoint character of the story, but they are still in the process of evaluating the narrative flow and overall content.

πŸŽ‰ Overcoming Burnout: The Emotional Journey

The speaker shares a personal and emotional aspect of their writing journey, highlighting the significance of completing the book after a long period of burnout. They express gratitude towards AI for helping them overcome the fear of the blank page and the physical reaction of pain associated with starting to write. The speaker emphasizes that despite the challenges, the completion of the novel was a significant achievement and a source of happiness.

Mindmap

Keywords

πŸ’‘AI-assisted writing

AI-assisted writing refers to the process of using artificial intelligence tools to generate or assist in the writing process. In the context of the video, the speaker discusses their experience writing a book titled 'Heirs of Dracula' with the help of AI, specifically using it to draft chapters and provide a base for further editing. This concept is central to the video as it explores the efficiency, challenges, and nuances of integrating AI into creative writing, highlighting the balance between machine-generated content and human editing.

πŸ’‘Editing

Editing in the context of this video involves the process of reviewing, revising, and improving AI-generated text to meet the author's standards and intentions. Despite using AI to draft the book, the speaker notes the necessity of substantial editing to refine the AI's output, ensuring that the final manuscript aligns with their creative vision and narrative goals. This illustrates the current limitations of AI in producing ready-to-publish content without human intervention.

πŸ’‘Time efficiency

Time efficiency in the video is discussed in relation to the expectations versus reality of using AI for writing. The speaker anticipated a significant reduction in writing time due to AI's rapid content generation capabilities. However, they found that the time saved in drafting was offset by the extensive editing required, leading to an overall time investment comparable to traditional writing methods. This observation challenges common perceptions of AI as a shortcut to productivity in creative endeavors.

πŸ’‘Mental effort

Mental effort refers to the cognitive load and creative energy invested in writing. The video highlights how AI can reduce the mental effort associated with generating content from scratch, particularly for writers facing challenges like writer's block or burnout. By providing a starting point or ideas to build upon, AI can alleviate the stress and intimidation of facing a blank page, thereby re-engaging writers with the creative process.

πŸ’‘Claude 2.0

Claude 2.0 is mentioned as the AI model used by the speaker to assist in writing their book. It represents a specific version of an AI tool designed for content generation. The speaker's experience with Claude 2.0 and its subsequent version, Claude 2.1, underscores the evolving nature of AI technology and the variable performance between different models or updates, affecting the writing process and output quality.

πŸ’‘Novel Crafter

Novel Crafter is introduced as a potential tool for future writing projects, distinguished from the speaker's previous approach by its ability to work on smaller sections of text at a time. This method suggests a more granular and controlled use of AI in writing, potentially leading to a more seamless integration of AI-generated content with the author's own writing style and reducing the need for extensive revisions.

πŸ’‘Sherlock Holmes

Sherlock Holmes is used as an example of a character within the speaker's book that benefited from AI's content generation. The AI's ability to convincingly mimic the distinctive voice and dialogue of this well-known character illustrates the potential of AI to effectively contribute to aspects of storytelling that may challenge even experienced writers, showcasing AI's capability to enhance narrative elements.

πŸ’‘Word count expectations

Word count expectations refer to the anticipated length of the speaker's book based on their outline and planning. The final manuscript turned out to be shorter than expected, raising considerations about pacing, narrative depth, and content richness in AI-assisted writing projects. This discrepancy prompts reflection on the need to possibly expand or enrich the story further, even after the initial drafting phase is complete.

πŸ’‘Emotional impact

The emotional impact discussed in the video highlights the personal significance and sense of achievement the speaker felt upon completing their novel with AI's assistance. Despite the technological aid, the accomplishment of finishing a book, particularly after a period of burnout, underscores the deeply personal and rewarding nature of the writing process, irrespective of the tools used.

πŸ’‘Publishing

Publishing is mentioned in the context of the speaker's plans to make their AI-assisted book commercially available. This indicates the transition from the writing and editing phases to sharing the work with a broader audience, highlighting the viability of AI-assisted projects in the professional landscape of literature and the evolving perceptions of AI-generated content in the creative industries.

Highlights

Author completed a book named 'Heirs of Dracula' using AI and editing.

The book is a Gothic fantasy set in the author's world.

AI did not save as much time as expected, but it saved mental effort.

AI helped the author overcome burnout and start writing again.

Claude 2.0 was found to be the best model for writing fiction at the time.

The author plans to use Novel Crafter for the next book, writing in sections.

AI filled in for the author's weaknesses while allowing focus on strengths.

The AI wrote dialogue for Sherlock Holmes exceptionally well.

The final story was shorter than expected at just over 50,000 words.

The author's emotional reaction to finishing the book after a long period of burnout.

AI prevented the dread and physical reaction associated with starting from a blank page.

The author's experience shows AI can be a mind saver, not just a time saver.

The author's live stream playlist documents the entire writing process.

The author is pleased with the final product and plans to publish it commercially.

The book was written mostly in live streams, with little additional work outside.

The author found that AI models were not perfect and had their limitations.

The author's approach to writing with AI involved creating story beats and then letting AI write the chapter.