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Chronicles from a Caribbean Cubicle

1/25/2007

TextAloud

I have found something good!

As an increasingly frequent writer, my concern about putting out well written material has given me pause for thought. Some recently read, self-published books that I found to be horrific literary adventures, have only added to my concern. Given that I write a blog, I can't very well blame my editor, publisher or proof-reader.

I imagine that I could blame my wife (my unpaid editor)... but doing so would only confirm suspicions that my jackass writings are indeed written by... a jackass.

Well, the good thing I have found will at least let people know that I can, more frequently than not, put together the basics of grammar, punctuation and spelling.

The tool is called TextAloud, and it simply converts written words into words spoken aloud by my computer.

How has this helped?

In the course of my recent writing, I found that the very best way to edit my own writing was to read it out aloud to "hear" how it sounds to the ear. An even better technique was ask my wife to read it.

Both methods, but especially the first, were kinda goofy. I seemed quite capable, with enough effort, to overlook crappy spelling and turn paragraphs of garbage into prose worthy of Rex Nettleford.

Plus, for some strange reason, she tired of it (calling her a monkey once didn't help.)

Now, I have "Anne." She has a mid-West U.S. accent that sounds bizarre when reading bad writing. My bad writing.

When I get tired of her, there is "David," who sounds a bit Southern U.S.

I can purchase others, and may spring for an English voice that may help my writing sound even better!

Of, course, that is not the point. The point here is that Anne and David help me to write with more fluency, greater cohesion, and with a rhythm that is pleasing to the ear. The fact that I can achieve all this with such a simple tool is something good, that might help this jackass get his points across.






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