October 15, 2019

Whalen Publishes Essay on Computer-Generated Creative Writing

Associate Professor Zach Whalen

Zach Whalen, Associate Professor of English, has just published an article in a special issue of The Journal of Creative Writing Studies on “Creative Making as Creative Writing.” His article, “The Many Authors of The Several Houses of Brian, Spencer, Liam, Victoria, Brayden, Vincent, and Alex: Authorship, Agency, and Appropriation,” is an artist’s statement reflecting on how creating a computer-generated book like Whalen’s 2017 work The Several Houses of Brian, Spencer, Liam, Victoria, Brayden, Vincent, and Alex invites readers to reconsider the idea of what it means to be an author. Whalen’s book draws on several different databases to create an essentially infinite variation on the nursery rhyme “This is the House that Jack Built”; these databases contain the work of hundreds of contributors, so Whalen argues in this article that the novel is best considered a collaboration among many instead of the work of a single individual or computer. https://scholarworks.rit.edu/jcws/vol4/iss1/

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