Paper: Success with Style: Using Writing Style to Predict the Success of Novels

ACL ID D13-1181
Title Success with Style: Using Writing Style to Predict the Success of Novels
Venue Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing
Session Main Conference
Year 2013
Authors

Predicting the success of literary works is a curious question among publishers and aspir- ing writers alike. We examine the quantitative connection, if any, between writing style and successful literature. Based on novels over several different genres, we probe the predic- tive power of statistical stylometry in discrim- inating successful literary works, and identify characteristic stylistic elements that are more prominent in successful writings. Our study reports for the first time that statistical stylom- etry can be surprisingly effective in discrim- inating highly successful literature from less successful counterpart, achieving accuracy up to 84%. Closer analyses lead to several new insights into characteristics of the writing style in successful literature, including findings that...