November 2016

Fifty Shades or War and Peace … makes no difference

Blank book pages awaiting words

One of the more misleading headlines of recent times was the one that suggested, for readers, there was no difference between the trashy romance porn of Fifty Shades of Grey and such established classics as Ulysses, War and Peace or Metamorphosis.

This led into a report of a research study that found that all novels are based on one of only six plots.

The University of Vermont academics reached this conclusion – which has long been a staple of fiction-writing courses everywhere – after using “sentiment analysis to examine the “emotional arcs” of 1722 novels.